Official government statistics are make-believe. The government makes inflation and unemployment disappear by how it defines inflation and unemployment, and it makes the economy grow by how it defines Gross Domestic Product. The definitional basis determines the statistical result.
For example, in his report on the official GDP revisions released July 31, John Williams (shadowstats.com) writes that “academic theories, often with strong political biases, have been used to alter the GDP model over the years, resulting in “Pollyanna Creep,” where changes made to the series invariably have had the effect of upping near-term economic growth.” In other words, definitional changes produce economic growth whether or not the economy produces economic growth.
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