Gov jobs

Well, you didn’t really explain how the government doesn’t create jobs. In fact, you gave a pretty good explanation of how the government does create jobs. I don’t recall my saying that the whole answer was simply the government creating more jobs and spending programs; I merely meant that when Boehner, et al, act like the government doesn’t play a role and doesn’t create jobs is about as disingenuous as you can get. I may have come off sounding like that because hey, the side that says the government sucks and can never do anything worthwhile has plenty of voices going for it already, and I was pointing out, or trying to, that our only hope is to have good government in conjunction with private enterprise.
I want good regulations that protect the commons. If regulations are bad, get rid of them. But if they protect the public health and safety at the expense of short term corporate profit, we need those regulations.
You’re right that there are inefficiencies and we need to work to eliminate those. And I get tired of the strange belief that somehow the market always operates efficiently and that the private sector never has waste. You mention the $45K person to do the $25K job. Fair enough, and the other side of the equation is this; in the Bush wars, we had about one private contractor in the war zone for every US soldier. In past wars the ratio was more like ten to one. And what did we get for this? Well, we paid much more. Many of the Halliburton and Blackwater contractors were paid six figures for jobs that had previously been done by our military at a fraction of the cost (and probably done better). That was just war profiteering, sure. And you can say it was bad government, and I’d agree. And, it showed pretty clearly that simply privatizing things doesn’t automatically make them more efficient or better run. Regulations can be cumbersome, but then so can oil spills and mine disasters.
We absolutely have to help private enterprise create jobs. How about getting rid of all the oil company subsidies and giving them to companies who manufacture solar and wind power? Some of the required smart grid stuff that will have to go with that may have to be done more directly by the government or with the government in conjunction with private business. And government spending to put people to work restarts the economy. That doesn’t mean those people are forever employed by the government. As in the New Deal, millions got put to work by the government, which meant they had money to spend, which helped private business revitalize, which helped the whole economy back to its feet, which eventually led to the end of CCC jobs and the like as they private sector was able to absorb those workers.
That’s how government spending can restart the economy. I don’t really know the theory by which spending cuts and letting corporations sit on their money as they have the past couple years works to get the economy going. And as I’ve pointed out, Europe is a great example of the governments just cutting spending and getting out of the way and letting private industry get the economy going. And it hasn’t worked out so well. So in sum my overall point is that the government has to do something; it is the only entity that can. No, it can’t do it all. It has to spend some, and be a catalyst for business. And the only way to be a catalyst that I know of is to get people to work so they have money to spend, which will give business the incentive to manufacture things because they know they will have customers to buy them.


About JP

We're two guys who met in college, in 1980. We've stayed in touch, and like to talk politics, current events, music and religion. JP is nore liberal than Sid, but not in every way. We figure that dialogue stimulates ideas, moderates perspective, and is in general friendly. These are things we need badly in these dangerous times. The blog name is taken from a song by Bruce Cockburn.
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