Monday, April 18th, 2011

Let's Do the Math on 'The Beached White Male'

Not just two white men are without jobs, though they're the nice anecdotal evidence for the cover of Newsweek, which announced "The Beached White Male." Oh, you do not say: "Through the first quarter of 2011, nearly 600,000 college-educated white men ages 35 to 64 were unemployed." Oh but wait, do not make fun: "It might be tempting to snark at these former fat cats suffering lean times. But when Beached White Males suffer, so do their wives and children." (There are about 52 million married white men in the U.S., by the way.) But it's still safe to say this thesis doesn't have anything to do with numbers in the real world.

There are about 154 million Americans in the civilian labor force. About 140 million of them are employed. About 114 million of those employed are white people. White men who are older than 16 have 61 million of the jobs. So white men have 43% of all jobs, while white men make up about 36% of the U.S. population. White women 16 and older have about 53 million of the jobs (37%—about proportionate). That's already 114 million of the jobs (81% of all civilian jobs), leaving just 26 million jobs.

So there are about 15 million black people with civilian jobs in the U.S. (out of about 40 million black people in total), leaving 11 million jobs for the Asians and "Hispanics" and the "everyone else"—and the Asians have like 7 million of those.

33 Comments / Post A Comment

Moff (#28)

Well, sure. But most of us only know white people.

some of my best friends are white people!

KarenUhOh (#19)

I think the job-creating capitalists have set sail on a voyage to put many harpoons through the blubber of expensive Moby Dick.

heroofthebeach (#2,280)

Never mind that it's not even true, I always find this kind of panic confusing, because it's like the complaint is that if we're going to have unemployment, there should definitely be more of it among women and minorities, which is just insane. And it's bad for women to have higher employment than men because those men have wives, you know? So actually the women suffer too!

And also the part where they don't remember that people have been saying this shit since the end of World War 2.

caw_caw (#5,641)

Am I old if I remember when Newsweek wasn't an antibiotic resistant germ?

deepomega (#1,720)

The definition of "beached" is "not in a position of overwhelming superiorty." See also: "persecution of christians".

DoctorDisaster (#1,970)

"The war on the wealthy."

DoctorDisaster (#1,970)

But I am white and male and want something to whine about! SO NOT SERVICEY.

City_Dater (#2,500)


This is why it's so much fun to be a woman and/or a minority — we don't have any Good Old Days we missed to get us all angsty. ;)

keisertroll (#1,117)

The irony here is that most Beached White Males were just fired from Newsweek.

caw_caw (#5,641)

@keisertroll Zing!

Personally, I interpret the Beached White Male as a symbol of evil, God, or an indifferent universe.

MichelleDean (#7,041)

But I'm sure these white men never felt entitled to those jobs, and their feelings are really the important thing to consider, here. White men need to be more supportive of each other, I'm saying.

keisertroll (#1,117)

Why can't the Beached White Male be a hot young guy who thinks I'm cute? AMIRITE?!!!

carpetblogger (#306)

@keisertroll why would you want an unemployed boyfriend? Ew.

keisertroll (#1,117)

@carpetblogger Company at the unemployment line.

keisertroll (#1,117)

Plus more time for sex.

DoctorDisaster (#1,970)

Choire, where did you get the data on race, gender, and employment? I feel a sudden urge to make some pie charts.

DoctorDisaster (#1,970)

Never mind, FOUND IT.

Matt (#26)

Kept reading this as 'The Bleached White Male', thought it was gonna be about Johnny Winter.

sox (#652)

@Matt I did the same thing, but I thought it was maybe somehow about white collar men who have to…bleach their shirts? Don't you love how your brain is like pac man, it just goes around til it finds a way?

hman (#53)

Life's a beach.

SidAndFinancy (#4,328)

The Daily Beached

Morbo (#1,288)

It never occurs to them they were overpaid.

It doesn't really dawn on them to do something else productive.

I feel for these guys, like I do for anyone else that loses a job. Well ,except for the guy that quit in 2009 with nothing else lined up. That was some kind of idiocy that only happens in the movies.

Does this issue also draw the obligatory corollary to this phenomenon and the popularity of Mad Man?

LondonLee (#922)

Something else productive? You mean another job, or maybe blogging or fixing up old bicycles?

brianvan (#149)

When we're talking about 140 million jobs out there, we're not really talking about all white-collar corner-office stuff.

If anything, middle class Americans, regardless of color, were the ones who were left beached when all the blue-collar jobs disappeared. 600,000 college-educated upper-middle-class white men without white-collar jobs are a piddling little demographic compared to all the rest of the people who have been left out of the economy.

The only depressing aspect of the "beached male" story is that, indeed, we have at least 600,000 college-graduated, substantially experienced workers in this country, of any race or gender, who are not just career-stalled or underemployed or part-time employed or unwillingly freelancing or in any other Labor Department-skipped classification of career futility… they're straight-up unemployed and searching. The total is at least 1.5 million with minorities and women included. That's downright gangrenous for our economy! Or our education system! Or probably both.

bretwalde (#11,278)

Not that I'm discounting the overblown nature of this "crisis", but why are you comparing employment numbers to total population? Wouldn't it make more sense to compare employment to labor force totals, so that you don't include people who choose not to seek work?

For instance, according to the DOL, in March 2011 there were about 166,581 persons (total of civilian labor force for each group below, all numbers in thousands) age 20+ either seeking work or employed (i.e., participating in the civilian workforce). Of that total:

64,890 were white males (38.95%)

54,900 were white females (32.96%)

17,705 were African-Americans (10.63%)

7,410 were Asians (4.45%)

21,677 were Hispanics (13.01%)

So comparing to your percentile of which groups what percentage of jobs, yes, white men are still overemployed based strictly off of their participation in the labor force; but then, so are white women (37% of job-holders versus 33% of the labor force). The issue is, of course, far more complex than all of this, but I think it helps to compare data of the same general type.

Uncle Elmer (#11,304)

Women are competing for jobs but are not creating them. Other than providing a mass market for their vanity products, they are not forging new industries or technologies. They are marginalizing that small percentage of men who passionately innovate, destroy, and create ideas and take the risks to drive them to actualization

Though men shank me and insult me, only men provide me with opportunity. Women can only insult me and deprive me of opportunity. Only men, and only a small fraction of them, take the risks that create industry and opportunity. Women can only serve as mere functionaries in man-created structures. When an organization becomes feminized, priority shifts from efficient and profitable production of goods and services to development of labarynthine rules for the comfort and security of women. Ossification and organizational death are inevitable.

Uncle Elmer (#11,304)

Men have shanked me and kicked me in the teeth, but only men have given me opportunity and employment. No woman can or will provide me or any man employment, yet all western women feel entitled to help and opportunities from men, even as they drive men out of the workplace.

It leads to a nasty conclusion : workplace women are your enemy. They cannot help you but can and will hurt you. Do not look at them, do not talk to them. Extend your hand to men when possible and fight your male rivals honorably. If you are in a situation where you must fight a female remember that she can use any tactic and you will be crucified for merely standing your ground. Walk away from it.

Uncle Elmer (#11,304)

Government studies that make dubious observations on gender differences are produced by self-serving feminist bureaucrats who have no concept about the reality of making a profit in the competitive business world. These imbeciles want the federal government to demolish profitable business structures that evolved over decades in the corporate shark-tank in favor of comfort and security for women and their lifestyle choices. Females want to inhabit man-created business structures as if those structures existed before man appeared on the veldt. They are clueless, and what's more don't care. They just want to have their cake and to eat it too. When you have pushed the last man out of the corporation it will collapse under its own dead weight.

ArtisDead (#12,792)

As a beached white male I am amazed at how long it's taking to absolutely dry out completely and I blame global warming for the occasional dousing of a wave or two I get during sporadic high tides which have kept me alive for such an intolerably long time.

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