The U.S. unemployment numbers for February 2006 are here. The national rate was 4.8%. (HT: Gindy)
Germany's numbers for the same time period, here. Their rate was 12.2%.
France's rate has been around ten percent for some time according to Bloomberg, it is now around 9.6%.
Spain hovers around the 10% range and was there for 2004 and 2005. In addition to that, let's look at what this site says about where unemployment was in Spain, at this time last year:
Despite the recent, positive performance of the Spanish economy, the country will face many economic challenges in the coming years. As mentioned above, Spain's unemployment rate has dropped significantly in the past 8 years, but it still remains well above the Eurozone average of 8.8%.
Dropped significantly and still double digit? And still above the EU average? With this statement and this statement alone, it would easily seem that Continental Europe accepts and tolerates a much higher rate of unemployment, than the leftist union bosses of the U.S. are able to endure.
Now, let's look at some real interesting data, shall we?
Back to Germany. By looking at this table, one can plainly see that the former West Germany had a much lower rate than its counterpart in the east, for the year 2004. These numbers seem to indicate that the former East Germany has rates, near the rates experienced here in America during the Great Depression, when the rate was around 25%. At 20.1%, a fifth of the workforce currently does not a job, compared to a quarter for the depression-era U.S.
The same can be said for other former Soviet satellites. Poland checks in April of last year, at 17.9%, while Slovakia for the same period was at 15.6%. Reference is here.
With all of this said, you can now plainly see that in comparison to other developed western nations and former communist states, the U.S. has one of the better rates. And if you compare the current 4.8% rate with rates from the past, you can also see that whenever the rates were in the 4% range, the nation was considered have a booming economy. And such is the case today.
But not only that, if you look at the nations where unions are much more powerful than here, you see that having a strong union does not guarantee a low jobless rate, by any stretch of the imagination. In fact, it would appear that unions want a high jobless rates, so they can sell their significance and relevance to those that have jobs and fear they may lose them.
In summary, those people that claim the U.S. needs jobs more than anything else, are union bosses and those whose pockets are lined by them. There are jobs to be had, but there are just not enough jobs that the union leaders can collect dues from and pay their huge salaries and fund their cushy lifestyle. (That's precisely why the unions are going after Wal-Mart.) But more than that, always remember this, a union never created a job that wasn't dependent on another's. Unions do not create jobs in and of themselves, except for the leeches that run them. Businesses create jobs. Businesses pay the salaries. Unions take, businesses give.
Unions are parasites and the hosts are businesses and workers.