The Bureau of Labor Statistics releases unemployment and workforce figures each month based upon household surveys. The latest report showed that only 62.8% of Americans remained in the workforce. This is 36-year low for the nation.
This number does not include those institutionalized, i.e. in prison, or those in the military.
The number is also deceptive as it includes those who are unemployed and still seeking a job as still being in the “workforce.”
An analysis of the numbers released by the government shows that only a shocking 58% of Americans actually hold a job.
Our analysis includes the 2.3 million Americans currently in prison as 53% are serving time for non-violent offenses.
Including those incarcerated, 251,144,000 Americans have the potential to continue to serve in the workforce.
Of those, 103,857,000 do not hold jobs due to unemployment, incarceration or having simply chosen not to work due to family or personal reasons.
The balance, 147,287,000 Americans are doing all of the work.
However, 4,312,000 of Americans work for the federal government and another 5.2 million work for state governments.
The harsh reality for the American Economy is that 137,775,000 people hold jobs that contribute to the national work product.
Only 54.8% of Americans hold jobs that provide value to the economy.
While federalists will argue that government employees add value to the economy, the balance of the benefit is yet to be proved.
In the meantime, those 137.7 million Americans are providing the federal government with the ability to collect $5.7 trillion in total revenue in 2014.
(Note that this article has been updated to correct percentage errors.)