On the Obama “Jobs” bill

Jon Hendry of the New Mexico Federation of Labor recently defended the Obama “Jobs” bill in the Albuquerque Journal. His rhetoric repeated several supposed justifications for more federal spending that don’t hold up under closer scrutiny:

Claim 1: Obama’s “Jobs Bill” will rebuild our infrastructure. Of course, that was the justification for the original $800 billion “stimulus.” How much of it was used on infrastructure? Not much as the chart below illustrates. Essentials like infrastructure are often used to sell more spending and waste. And, not all infrastructure is created equal:

Claim 2: We need to “revive manufacturing”: the fact is that US manufacturing is producing more economic value than ever. Sure, we could do even better, but protectionism is not the answer. Ironically, the recently-passed free trade agreements could indeed be a major boon for US manufacturing.

Claim 3: We must provide the funds to end state and local government layoffs that cut essential public services: I’m not sure what “essential” services have been cut and who the “we” is. At least in New Mexico, I can’t point to any major layoffs by governments.

Claim 4: Our elected leaders should extend unemployment benefits and work much harder to keep homeowners in their homes: Extending unemployment benefits will lead to people staying unemployed for longer periods of time. People need to stay in the work force to keep their skills sharp though there are some specific, free market ideas for making the jobs market better. In terms of working to keep homeowners in their homes, this is a reasonable idea depending on the specifics.

Rather than raising taxes on some in order to foist another “stimulus” on the American economy, Obama and Congress need to cut spending and regulations to put the economy back on a firm footing. The signing of these trade agreements is the best thing to happen to the US economy since Obama became President. Hopefully he builds on that.

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3 Replies to “On the Obama “Jobs” bill”

  1. what jobs that is pure bs all jobs are being outsourced to other coumtries as for the dumbutt he is another bail out shill every thing that nobama has said are lies he has been told to bankrupt this country and he is doing a real job of that it time to replace the left right paradighn they are being bought and paid for by the foreign banksters to turn this country into another third world country MAY YAHWH CURSE YOU FOR THAT this was a free country once but that is a fairy tail to start with now

  2. Balance has a certain beauty when it’s achieved, and 50:50 votes looked absolutely gorgeous late yesterday.

    One aspect of the economy that continues to be overlooked, and publicized, along with the overall structural deficiencies, is the temporary nature of the jobs that continue to be proposed (i.e., temporary funding, or Stimulus 1.0, 2.0, or the proposed 3.0, results in strictly temporary jobs, which in turn delays addressing the more permanent problems that got us here).

    Without the incentive to fix the overall structure of the resulting temporary jobs’ costs (i.e., no more TEMPORARY funding), a true recovery cannot be made. And without a true recovery, economic growth cannot begin to be achieved. We’ve dumped a lot of temporary funding resources into this economy over the past few years, but we have yet to make any serious attempt at re-aligning the economic incentives needed in order to motivate the economic returns required from those funds in order to acheive econoomic growth. What we have achieved, at this point, is nothing more than “income smoothing”.

    Economic growth, a rising tide, which lifts all boats, results from aggregate efficiencies and broad-based contributions that produce overall net gains from the entire system. It’s certainly true that productive efficiencies have been incentivized, via fear and uncertainty, however, broad-based contributions (i.e., as many men and women as possible working in the production of valuable goods and services that return in a profit—private sector) continues to be disincentized by existing and potential regulatory mandates and penalties.

    It doesn’t matter if we pump two trillion dollars into the economy if the resulting spending of that same two trillion results in zero gain or even worse, a potential loss, two or more years down the road…and that’s essentially the promise of the current regulatory structure, and its mandates, to private employers…The message to businesses (large and small): take the risk, hire the labor, and lose your shirt…and that doesn’t work!

    The current structures and incentives/disincentives are systemically insolvent, and expanded. Stopping the continued overexpansion of systematic failure incentives is a good first step; however, it’s just one step of many more that will need to be taken by an entire country. Overlay the total debt burden, and it becomes very clear that any recovery period will be difficult, long lasting, and will require systematic changes and difficult choices going forward. However, it can and will be done…eventually…just as soon as it’s the country’s, and its polititians’ last available option. There is no easy, or temporary, way out.

  3. Who ran the jobs overseas ?? and why . The unions demanding more pay,benefits etc for LESS production . Too much feather bedding on union jobs , Obama dumping billions into Solar = Photovoltaic manufacturing plants Ha Ha NO way they can compete with China ,but results in payoff for funds given to Osamas campaign. Billions to produce an electric car in Finland ??? Al Gore is involved freeloading . USA dolars for foreign workers ?? LOL.

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