Am I officially unemployed?

October 14, 2008

For statistical purposes and for purposes on unemployment insurance, a “unemployed” person is defined as a person who is
1) not employed,
2) actively seeking employment
3) able to work

For at least three months. So I am officially unemployed. Sweet

But what type of unemployed am I?

Graduate unemployment

Educated unemployment or underemployment is due to a mismatch between the aspirations of graduates and employment opportunities available to them. If the only benefit of a degree is improved workplace productivity, this represents a wasteful investment of scarce resources. Large sums of money have consequently been invested in educating unemployed or underemployed graduates which could otherwise have been invested in job-creating productive programmes.


Oh well. Here is a post on the pros and cons of the unemployment benefits I may have to go on soon.

It sucks that I can not tell the different between these two arguments from that post, the first by the blog’s writer:


there’s some real evidence that the bad incentive structure extensions creates does a non-trivial amount to undercut the stimulus effect. It’s still a better idea that, say, “tax cuts for rich people!” but it’s worse than a lot of other ideas. Basically, we should be spending money to put people to work doing something useful — infrastructure! — not giving them money that’s conditions on their continued idleness.

versus these from the comments section:

Is Matt buying into the rightwing argument that people on unemployment would rather slack on a paltry $1200 a month (or less) than go back to work? People who make that argument never tried to live on $1200 a month (at least not since they were in college and had parents paying all the really big bills) or they would know it for the howling nonsense it is.

and another

But, more to the point, in the midst of an economic downturn the drag isn’t that people aren’t accepting jobs it’s that a positive feedback loop of cost cutting and reduced economic activity has taken hold. Unemployment benefits are more likely to be spent than most other income transfers, including tax cuts for middle class or rich people. Further there is a case to be made that allowing people more time to search for employment aids them in finding a job better suited to their skills and therefore will be more productive.

and another…

even in boom times, aligning work supply and demand is no mean feat, in large measure due to all the structural disincentives (like home ownership, child situated in school, etc.) that militate against relocating (something harder for a young person without family obligations like matthew to understand). and these ain’t boom times.

at some point, you need to be off unemployment and either employed or actually on welfare, but extending unemployment benefits is a simple, low-cost stimulative measure.

I have a minor in economics and all of these sound pretty good to me.

Lesson being: I am dumb and I need to read more about economics.

Blog lessons:

1. A commenter from yglesias’ blog, Calderon Says:
October 13th, 2008 at 5:52 pm My modest plea for today is that (which applies to nearly all bloggers, so not meaning to single you out) is that when bloggers say that “research indicates,” “evidence shows,” or they just assert some non-obvious fact, that they please include a citation so the readers can look it up.

2. I dont like the word press writing interface-it feels very cramped. I will have to keep an eye out for what other people use for blogs. On the other hand, I like how you can get easy data about each of the post, things are easy to edit, and manage. So overall not bad, but I would be surprised if there were not some better programs out there.

  • Assignment: find best blog programs

3. I need a better system for copy and paste, as well as for referencing. Everything is getting too messy to fast.

  • Assignment: lynda lessons, see if I can figure some of this stuff out

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