The recession is over and you're still jobless

Job hunters fill out applications
Job hunters fill out applications

It was with great giddiness that the word spread throughout the land yesterday: The recession is over! The recession is over! One half-expected Paul Revere to dismount at the end of the news report.

The National Bureau of Economic Research deemed the 18-month recession officially ended in June 2009. There are only a few pesky problems with that declaration: What to do with those 14.9 million or so people who still don't have jobs (more if you count those who have given up looking out of futility)? Or the foreclosure plague that has wiped out entire communities? Or the fact that food banks are stressed to the breaking point with hungry families? Or that more than a few people can't remember what the inside of a shopping mall looks like and panic when they misplace a grocery coupon?