Trailing the pack

During the latter years of the Obama administration, it was a fairly common trope on the political right to assume that anything put out by the Bureau of Labor Statistics had been cooked to a fare-the-well by a corps of faceless operatives, loyal to the Bureau first and the President second and the American people somewhere around fifty-fourth.

Which is not to say that the Trump administration did a great deal to change those apparent priorities. In fact, it might simply be that the Bureau, in our data-hungry age, is still just barely beyond the abacus. For example:

The BLS website uses JavaScript to bring you various features. JavaScript is a software technology needed on most web pages for buttons, online forms, and other content to work properly. Important: Disabling JavaScript will cause some sites to not work properly. Click on the name of your browser to view instructions for enabling JavaScript.

And here are the choices you get:

Browsers recommended by the Bureau of Labor Statistics

Netscape, fercrissake? And version 7, released in 2002, at that?

More dramatic, perhaps: Firefox 1.5.x. The current stable release is 55.0.3.

And near the bottom of the page, this revelation:

Last Modified Date: August 14, 2008

Well, thank you, George W. Bush.

(Via Ellie Kesselman.)


  1. McG »

    3 September 2017 · 5:57 pm

    There wasn’t a column for BlackBerry, so the O Administration had no interest in maintaining it.

  2. fillyjonk »

    3 September 2017 · 6:49 pm

    You can search for the site on Altavista.

  3. Roger Green »

    4 September 2017 · 5:23 am

    As a librarian, this really bugs me. I’ve noticed, e.g., that I must download Census data in Firefox, because Chrome downloads but I can’t find it. And this is true on a state level too – some downloads ONLY work in Internet Explorer.

  4. ETat »

    4 September 2017 · 6:01 am

    Hey, Roger, where have you been? Noticed you stayed away for a while. Hope you weren’t sick.

  5. Roger O Green »

    5 September 2017 · 11:34 am

    I had a root canal on Thursday. that wasn’t the problem. It was the PAIN before the root canal that was doing me in for 2 weeks.

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