Mnuchin Calls 3.3 MILLION Newly Unemployed Americans 'Irrelevant.' He Probably Could Have Put That Better If He Wasn't Literal Marie Antoinette
It's really, really bad.
The new unemployment numbers are out, and they'll knock the wind right out of you. THREE POINT THREE MILLION. That's the number of Americans who applied for unemployment last week. Here, have a graphic from CNN.
That red line isn't the border, just to make this image look prettier; it's the number the Department of Labor released this morning. And it doesn't include gig workers, people who are self-employed, and students. No Uber drivers, no hairdressers, no personal trainers, no house cleaners, no dog walkers, and no off-the-books childcare. So even though this number quadruples the old record sent in 1982, it is probably a massive undercount because of who it leaves out.
The official unemployment rate was 3.5 percent last month. Now it's probably 5.5 percent. And as ugly as that is, it's likely to get worse as employees drain their accrued sick and vacation time on the way to the unemployment office. There are thousands of companies out there grappling with the lost business and trying to work out who they'll have to cut to stay afloat.
Hey, remember that hilarious time in January when Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said that coronavirus would be awesome for the American economy because all those dead Chinese people would "accelerate the return of jobs to North America" and lead to a rebirth of manufacturing?
"Every American's heart has to go out to the victims of the coronavirus, so I don't want to talk about a victory lap over a very unfortunate, very malignant disease," Ross told Fox Business. "But the fact is, it does give businesses yet another thing to consider when they go through their review of their supply chain."
And speaking of the dumbest fucking assholes in the world who are inexplicably in charge of our country, check out Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, a billionaire like his buddy Wilbur, explaining how jobless numbers "are not relevant."
DAVID FABER, CNBC: Secretary Mnuchin, we knew the jobless claims number was not going to be a good one, but I am curious as to what your thoughts were when you saw that 3.283 million number this morning.
MNUCHIN: You know, to be honest with you, I just think these numbers right now are not relevant. And you know, whether they're bigger or smaller in the short term, you know, I mean obviously, there are people who have jobless claims, and again the good thing about this bill is the president is protecting those people.
How exactly is Donald Trump "protecting those people"? He's still suing to take away their healthcare under the Affordable Care Act, which would allow insurers to treat lung damage from coronavirus as a pre-existing condition when we get to the other side of this nightmare. He hasn't used the Defense Production Act to ensure fast, cheap supply of medical equipment, because the federal government isn't a shipping clerk, dammit! Instead, states have been forced to bid against each other in a desperate attempt to protect their own health workers as they treat "those people" in their hospitals.
"Those people" are probably glad that the tax deadline has been moved to July 15. Big MAGA thumbs up for that. Although they'd probably have traded it for a pandemic response which wasn't COMPLETELY FUCKING INCOMPETENT.
Anyway, "those people," the irrelevant ones who filed unemployment claims and the ones who didn't qualify, are probably super grateful that Donald Trump is going to drag his flabby ass away from the television long enough to sign that stimulus bill once the House passes it. And hey, another reason to be grateful, the stock market went up this morning because those employment numbers weren't WORSE. Don't we all feel #Blessed?
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Liz Dye lives in Baltimore with her wonderful husband and a houseful of teenagers. When she isn't being mad about a thing on the internet, she's hiding in plain sight in the carpool line. She's the one wearing yoga pants glaring at her phone.