Hat tip to Zero Hedge, which notes a real oddity about it:
…After last month the data for April food stamp recipients indicated the we may, just may, be reaching an inflection point in the foodstamp participation following a mere 60 thousand jump in those receiving Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), today’s just released data confirmed that the BLS and BEA may have had a hand or two when determining this latest data series. Because the just announced jump in foodstamp usage of over 1.1 million entirely out of the blue…
…But wait, there’s more. Digging into the numbers reveals something pecuiliar: virtually the entire surge in monthly SNAP participation is due to one state alone: Alabama, which saw those living on foodstamps jump from 868K to 1.762MM…
The fact that this many people are on food stamps is bad…but the indication of data manipulation is worse. I ask the question: Is the Obama Administration fudging the data to make the economic picture look better, and only correcting the data when it becomes so bad there’s no way around it?
It isn’t just here – almost invariably, each week the previous week’s first time claims for unemployment are revised upwards. Almost invariably, when new unemployment rate data is released there is a reduction in labor-force participation. Both of these actions tend to help Obama. Experts I’ve read indicate that if labor force participation was in line with what we’ve seen over the past ten years, the unemployment rate would be above 11%. Imagine for a moment what the political picture would look like here in August of 2011 if unemployment was officially at 11% and figured to go higher all through the rest of the year…there would be a stampede for the exits away from Obama. He’d be a lame duck…Democrats would just be trying to protect themselves, and a genuine (as opposed to fringe) primary challenger to Obama would become possible.
The political facts of life are that even if unemployment is above 7% in November of 2012, it will be hard for Obama to secure re-election. Every point higher magnifies Obama’s difficulty…and getting above 10% makes it just about impossible for Obama to win, even if we nominated a Paul/Huntsman ticket. I’m really starting to smell a rat here…a manipulation of data in order to make it appear that things aren’t that bad, thus giving Obama his chance to win. The data can be adjusted towards reality after the election…and whether Obama has won or lost won’t matter at that point.
Congress should investigate this. This is what “oversight” is for: to ensure that the Executive Branch is carrying out its duties in accordance with law. We need to know if we’re being lied to for Obama’s political benefit.