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In October of 2006 America’s population reached 300,000,000. Every 11 seconds another American is born, arrives, comes home, or otherwise becomes a statistic. Net? A baby is born every seven seconds, a migrant arrives every 31 seconds, but someone somewhere in the nation dies every 13 seconds. As the average life span of an American lengthens, that “net increase” may decrease to nine or 10 seconds.

Unemployment, we are told by the Department of Labor Statistics (which is supposed to keep track of such trivia), is somewhere under five percent, fluctuating up or down a tenth of a percentage point with the seasons. If at least a third of those 300 million people are either under 17 or over 70, then there would be around 200 million people eligible to be employed. (The Census Bureau says that 21 percent of us are under age 14, and 12 percent over 65, hence roughly one third are outside the normal employment age.) Four percent of that would be 8 million unemployed persons, for whatever reason.

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