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Record number of Americans are not in the labor force

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
March 8th, 2013
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

The Department of Labor now says that a record number of people are "not in the labor force." The number represents how many Americans are no longer contributing to the wealth of the nation by labor.

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - There are 314 million Americans in the country and almost 90 million of them are now "not in the labor force" according to the Department of Labor. This is about 28 percent of the adult population.

The number does not include children or those on disability. It does include those who have retired, retired early, or who have stopped looking for work, also known as "discouraged workers."

Another 24 percent of the population is children, under 18 years of age.

Of those working, many at the bottom who are drawing minimum wage are either underemployed, or paid so little that they receive aid payments. Many more of the employed pay no taxes because their income is so low or they are able to take advantage of credits which reduces their taxable income to zero.

The end result is that the entire nation is being funded and supported by less than half of the population.

This places an increasing economic burden on those who are working and paying taxes.

It is understood that many, including the retired and children, cannot do much to contribute to the economy - the elderly having already done their fair share and children not yet expected to do so. However, there are millions of Americans of working age who have quit looking for work, or simply cannot obtain work for various reasons. These are not the truly disabled or legitimately unemployed, but rather the discouraged and unwilling.

The number of these dependents remains obscured because no agency can agree on who should be counted, but the number is significant. As the trend continues, we can expect increasing challenges in balancing our national budget and an increasing tax burden for those who do work and produce wealth.

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