atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,
atomic_fungus
atomic_fungus

#1850: Jobless claims rose 17,000 last week

That's what I'm taking from this article on unemployment.

...now check me on this: we were told last week that the economy lost only 11,000 jobs in all of November. So in the last week, we've lost 6,000 more jobs than we lost in all of November? Is that right?

So, what--if 17,000 is a "surge" caused by agencies being closed part of Thanksgiving week, what's a "normal" week like in this economy? Is it like, perhaps, 11,000 jobs lost? Nowhere does the article compare this figure to prior weekly figures, except by saying that job losses were lower in the the last five weeks.

WTF is going on here?

The other day, I heard Limbaugh say in passing that the 11,000 figure for November was, in fact, for the last week of November, but he didn't elaborate. No one else has picked up on this, and I seem to be the only person in the dextrosphere who is wondering publicly WTF is going on with the unemployment figures.

This newest tidbit of information would seem to back that up, though. Otherwise, we're expected to believe the following:
Sep: 32,500/week
Oct: 27,750/week
Nov: 2,750/week
Dec: 17,000/week
Why would November's figures be so much lower than the surrounding months? Might the Department of Labor have changed the way they count seasonal employees? Might some other statistical trick be in play here?

The press is utterly useless; they're protecting their guy by being completely uncritical of the numbers coming from his labor department. But I'd expect the conservatives, at least, to be saying something about this.

* * *

Here we have "the" ten dumbest green gadgets, and I'm going to comment on them myself a bit.

#1: Hand-cranked electric razor. The green theory for this nonsense is that your electric razor consumes far too much power, and it's better to charge a battery by cranking than it is to plug it in.

Power saved: 200 watt-hour/day, maybe. $0.02 worth of electricity, and you'll spend tons of money on non-green wrist braces to treat your carpal tunnel.

#2: Tweet-a-watt. This doesn't actually save any power or the environment; this is a kit which allows you to web-enable your "Kill-a-watt" meter.

This actually has the benefit of saving negative energy, as the "Kill-a-watt" meter draws power when it's in use. TV plus meter equals more power used than the TV alone. (Web-enabling it makes this even worse.)

#3: All-In-One Recycling Center. Spend $270 for this stupid thing. It doesn't actually save the environment and it makes separating your recyclables even more inconvenient than it already is.

#4: Water-Powered Clock. This is not a "water-powered clock". This is a clock which uses a weak solution of lemon juice as an electrolyte, and the lemon juice solution must be periodically changed.

Unless you're growing the lemons in your back yard, this thing isn't going to save the planet, because the lemon juice you buy at the grocery store is delivered by a stinky diesel truck.

#5: Solar Link Radio. This product does a yeoman's service of demonstrating the inherent inefficiency of solar power: it takes a day's worth of sun to power a few hours' worth of operation, which is why it also features a hand crank. Emphasizing its solar powered nature, it's not waterproof; well, WTF, you're not going to try to use a solar-powered radio in the rain anyway, right?

#6: Fuel-Saving Device. This is an electronic driving coach; it tells you how to accelerate and slow down in the most economical fashion possible. This is good: Yet Another Stupid Gadget which distracts drivers from their A-number-one task, driving the goddamned car.

#7: Solar Powered Coasters. Because, damn it, the coasters you have to plug into the wall are just power hogs. I'm pretty sure that plug-in-light-up-color-changing coasters are the reason global warming and pollution have become the problems they are today.

#8: Solar Powered Badge. It's a solar panel for charging your iPod. You wear it on your coat, and it announces to the world, "I am an elite dork!"

#9: Self-winding wristwatch. It's a new day in the world, everyone, for we now have watches which need no batteries! It's an eco-friendly miracle!

#10: Energy Curtain. ...glow in the dark curtains? I'm sure it has to be more complicated than that.

I'm sure I could find many more "eco-products" which are just as stupid and non-green as these are. Most of this crap doesn't stand up to detailed inspection and none of it does squat towards saving the environment. Not even infinitesimally.

* * *

Swine flu shot has some serious side-effects. Apparently the occurence of Guillain-Barre Syndrome among vaccine recipients is nontrivial.

Look: if the prevention has the potential to be far worse than the disease being prevented, it makes no sense to take the preventative.

* * *

ObamaJobs:
Every serious person should welcome the president's proposals to lift the dormant economy and reduce unemployment. Not because every serious person would agree with them but because they are a clear test of how a left-wing government would run the American economy.

If this works, hats off to them and we become France. If not, Americans may finally dump left-wing economics into the ash heap of history, starting next November and then in the next presidential election, which can't come soon enough.
Unfortunately, Yet Another Example of the failures of Keynesian economics and socialist policy won't deter these morons.

What was that saying about doing the same thing and expecting different results?

* * *

Two weeks to Christmas. Two weeks. And only three until the end of the year.

I must be enjoying myself.
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