Accuracy in Media

A new analysis shows states that have ended enhanced and extended unemployment benefits have seen unemployment decline faster than states that have continued the payments, according to the Wall Street Journal.

“The number of unemployment benefit recipients is falling at a faster rate in Missouri and 21 other states canceling enhanced and extended payments this month,” said the Wall Street Journal, “suggesting that ending the aid could push more people to take jobs.”

The decline is in line with predictions made back in May by AIM.org, when progressive organizations said that the too-generous unemployment benefits had no effect on labor shortages around the country and that ending unemployment was a cruel decision driven by politics and not economics.

“While some employers may be struggling to hire for one reason or another right now, economists say generous unemployment benefits are not the cause,” said the HuffPost. HuffPost is a division of Buzzfeed, and has been going even further, left-progressive since Buzzfeed acquired them last fall.

While HuffPost cited a study done the previous July to support its contention that unemployment benefits do not affect the labor market, that study was very narrowly based, during a period of intense COVID anxiety in the summer of 2020.

The study cited by HuffPost also contradicted previous studies that we cited at AIM.org that show that unemployment benefits tend to drive up the unemployment rate.

In 2014, the Federal Reserve Bank found that extended benefits during the recession period 2008-2012 kept unemployment 0.5% higher in the aggregate.

That may not seem like a lot, but that’s 800,000 people out of work, multiplied by 4 years, multiplied by an average wage of $50,000 annually.

It’s a lot of money.

“You’re starting to see a response to these programs ending,” Aneta Markowska, Jefferies’ chief financial economist said in the new report according to the Journal. In recent months “employers were having to compete with the government handing out money, and that makes it very hard to attract workers.”

Unsurprisingly, Vox.com found that at the root of the recently discontinued unemployment benefits by mostly GOP-controlled states was …racism.

“At the root of all this is this narrative that Americans have to be forced to go to work, and it is completely and totally rooted in structural racism,” Rebecca Dixon, executive director of the National Employment Law Project (NELP) told Vox in May. “Because who was being forced to work in the 1800s? Black people.”

Got it? What’s happening today is always because of slavery, according to Dixon.

According to data by the Federal Reserve Bank, Black unemployment has declined from 9.6% to 9.1% from March to May 2021 a 5.2% reduction, versus an overall decline of 6% to 5.8%, or 3.3% during the same period.

The Wall Street Journal did not report on Black unemployment in the states that ceased extended benefits since those benefits ceased in the middle of June.




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