Posts Tagged ‘jobs bill’
October 24th, 2011 at 10:40 am
Ramirez Cartoon – The Obama Jobs Plan: Old vs. New
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Below is one of the latest cartoons from two-time Pulitzer Prize-winner Michael Ramirez.

View more of Michael Ramirez’s cartoons on CFIF’s website here.

September 15th, 2011 at 9:23 am
Ramirez Cartoon: Obama Jobs Plan…Deposit Money Here
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Below is one of the latest cartoons from two-time Pulitzer Prize-winner Michael Ramirez.

View more of Michael Ramirez’s cartoons on CFIF’s website here.

March 3rd, 2010 at 12:13 pm
Yelling “Jobs!” in a Crowded Senate Chamber

Today’s Washington Times has a morosely humorous article discussing the current fetish for “jobs creation” bills in Congress.  From confiscating beachfront property to establishing a non-profit government entity to promote travel, nearly every bill in Congress is being fitted into a jobs frame that makes it difficult to oppose on its claims.  But not, of course, on the substance.

For that, we need look no farther than the end of the liberty-loving economics student’s book shelf for a copy of Henry Hazlitt’s “Economics in One Lesson.”  After explaining why full employment is only and always the means to achieving the proper goal of full production, Hazlitt takes aim at the predecessors of our latter day misguided politicos:

Yet our legislators do not present Full Production bills in Congress but Full Employment bills.   Even committees of businessmen recommend ‘a President’s Commission on Full Employment,’ not on Full Production, or even on Full Employment and Full Production.  Everywhere the means is erected into the end, and the end itself is forgotten.”

So too, is the credibility of any member of Congress who thinks that the answer to spurring economic growth comes from anything other than lower, simpler taxes.

February 24th, 2010 at 1:11 am
Why Son of Stimulus is a Bad Idea
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With five Republicans voting for cloture in the Senate– Olympia Snowe, Susan Collins, Kit Bond, George Voinovich, and (surprise!) Scott Brown — we should expect the Congress to pass its new “jobs bill” this week (in reality, this is like a 100-calorie pack version of the stimulus).

It’s not surprising that some Republicans are feeling the pressure to get behind this legislation. The perennial temptation in times of economic crisis is to get behind anything that seems like it could make a difference. This is not that piece of legislation.

Let’s start with the basics: At $15 billion, this package could be financed with what’s between the cushions of the sofas in the Oval Office. But that’s still $15 billion in new debt that can’t be justified without a commensurate kick to the economy. This package can’t deliver that kick.

The big hooks for Republicans are going to be the exemption from payroll taxes for new employees through the rest of the year and the $1,000 tax credit for new employees who are retained for a year. These provisions will have positive economic effects, but they will be very subtle. Because this bill only aims to jumpstart the employment side of the market without addressing broader economic conditions, it will make it slightly cheaper to hire new employees, but won’t create enough economic activity to justify employers adding many new hires to their payrolls. As with the similar plan that was tried during the Carter years, this most likely means that the majority of the benefits will go to hires that would have been made with or without the package. Given the limited time horizon of the bill, we should also expect its net effects to be similar to “Cash for Clunkers” — that is, just moving up hiring decisions instead of changing the fundamentals behind them.

The other provisions are no more impressive. This package will subsidize further borrowing by local and state governments, which only continues the sugar-high spending that simply can’t be sustained even in the best of economic times. And while infrastructure spending is certainly a legitimate function of government, it’s hard to sell as a strategy for increasing employment. After all, the mark of good infrastructure development — quick, efficient construction — is fundamentally at odds with the idea of creating jobs that are meant to endure for the long-term.

This certainly isn’t the worst piece of legislation to come out of the Age of Obama, but it also isn’t much more than a placebo. Until Washington begins to focus on shrinking the size of government, however, we shouldn’t expect the prescription to change much.

December 14th, 2009 at 4:31 pm
Job Growth Coming… So Let’s Pass Another “Stimulus?”
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The Obma White House has long followed the idea that there’s no problem that the federal government shouldn’t fix.

Now, it’s telling us that there’s no improvement that the federal government shouldn’t fix, either.

That appeared to be the message from White House Council of Economic Advisors Chairman Christina Romer and National Economic Council Chairman Lawrence Summers, both of whom made the rounds on yesterday’s Sunday talk shows.  In his comments to George Stephanopoulos on ABC’s This Week, Mr. Summers said that, “most professional forecasters are now looking for a return to job growth by spring.”  And appearing on NBC’s Meet the Press, Ms. Romer predicted “positive job growth sometime in the first quarter.”

But as noted by The Wall Street Journal today, we must ignore federal deficits in favor of more “stimulus” spending.  According to both Summers and Romer, shifting focus to the deficit instead of spending even more during a period of record deficits would be “suicide.”

So let’s get this straight:  Obama’s first “stimulus” was supposed to cap unemployment at 8%.  It’s now at 10%.  But despite the fact that the White House expects job growth to return in the next quarter, it wants to spend even more to “stimulate?”

One is left to wonder whether the Obama Era more closely resembles a work of Orwell or merely an issue of The Onion.

December 3rd, 2009 at 4:54 pm
Job-ing the System

Today President Obama hosts a “jobs summit” at the White House, and apparently he’s looking for ideas. Unfortunately, the folks in Congress have one in the shape of a second stimulus package – this time to be packaged and sold as a “jobs bill.” And just what’s in a “jobs bill”? Make work projects, short-term subsidies, and tax gimmicks all designed to give businesses an incentive to hire people they can’t afford without a government check. Like the first stimulus package, this kind of fix merely prolongs and deepens the problems facing businesses; namely uncertainty about the future.

If the president is truly interested in getting ideas about how to create more jobs, he should read John Stossel and meditate on this pearl of wisdom:

When government sets simple rules that everyone understands and then gets out of the way, free people create jobs.

Granted, we might lose some middle men. But until the tax system is simplified and the government stops intervening in the free market, people may get jobs, but they won’t have the kind of stability they – or their employers – need to get back to work.