For years now, it has been widely known that government departments like to skew their figures to show themselves in a positive light or to hide facts that would put them under the spotlight. This is also true with the unemployment figures that are released each month.
The New York Post published an exclusive article Monday that reported during the final months of the 2012 presidential election campaign, the jobless rate was manipulated and fabricated and the United States Census Bureau knew it. The decline went from 8.1 percent in August to 7.8 percent in September and it surprised everyone in Washington and on Wall Street.
At the time, General Electric CEO Jack Welch claimed on Twitter that the numbers were faked:
“Unbelievable jobs numbers..these Chicago guys will do anything..can’t debate so change numbers,” Welch tweeted. He later conceded that he did not have any evidence to suggest the data was tainted.
Soon after Welch made the comments, Labor Secretary Hilda Solis told CNN that the remarks are “insulting.”
“This is a methodology that’s been used for decades. And it is insulting when you hear people just cavalierly say that somehow we’re manipulating numbers,” stated Solis.
According to the knowledgeable and so-called reliable source, surveyors in charge of conducting household surveys were encouraged to fake surveys and fill in data gaps where there was a shortfall in the number of study participants.
This news doesn’t just date back to last year’s election but rather all the way back to 2010.
The news publication obtained documents that disclosed an employee named Julius Buckmon who was caught fabricating data that went into the unemployment report. Buckmon told the Post that he was told by those in higher positions than him to produce fake information, which essentially created people and gave them jobs.
“It was a phone conversation — I forget the exact words — but it was, ‘Go ahead and fabricate it’ to make it what it was,” Buckmon said.
When the incident occurred, the Census Bureau never made it public nor did it contact the Labor Department that the data was falsified. “Yes, absolutely they should have told us,” said a Labor spokesman. “It would be normal procedure to notify us if there is a problem with data collection.”
It seems that the former Labor Secretary should issue an apology to those who have questioned the job numbers in the past.