Every politician who will be on the stump from now until the election in November will be talking about the need for jobs in the United States.
The problem with this is they don’t know how to create any jobs. Most of the nation’s manufacturing base has been moved to foreign countries where wages are lower. The loss of these jobs has left a huge void in the economy that so far we have not been able to fill. You simply can’t replace the benefits provided the nation by good jobs with those paying $7.25 an hour.
There doesn’t seem to be any sector of the economy capable of replacing the lost benefits—consumer buying power, tax revenues to local, state and federal governments and a higher standard of living for everyone. These are the advantages of high paying industrial jobs.
More than five million of these jobs were lost in the last decade. Manufacturing accounted for 25 percent of the nation’s jobs 40 years ago; today it provides only about eight percent. According to the Associated Press, 81 percent of the 630,000 jobs created in 2010 are low-paying service sector jobs.
So the task isn’t only creating jobs, but creating good jobs.
The Republicans say jobs will be created if the Bush tax cuts–enacted in by congress in 2001 for a 10-year period—are extended beyond their expiration date of December 31 this year. Hogwash. Tax cuts do not create jobs, and they haven’t done much else except line the pockets of the wealthy since 2001.
Unemployment was at four percent when the Bush tax cuts were enacted; it is now almost 10 percent. The nation’s poverty rate in 2008, the last year such statistics were available, was 13.2 percent. It is now the highest it has been in about 15 years. Food stamp usage was 1.2 million in 2001; it is now up to 36 million.
Before he was bumped unceremoniously out of the governor’s race, Scott McInnis had a one-word billboard. JOBS, it said boldly, as if he could provide them at the snap of his fingers if we elected him. What a load of stuff.
Democrats, too, spout a lot of nonsense when it comes to creating jobs. They struggle with members of their own party even to extend unemployment benefits to jobless workers. How can they be expected to develop a program to create jobs? It appears they may never be able to do anything to correct the deficiencies of the various international trade agreements that have been so devastating to our workforce.
And with two wars going on, a huge deficit challenging the Obama administration and an opposition party that will not cooperate, Democrats can’t establish any kind of public works program, such as President Roosevelt did in the Depression, to put people to work. Nobody outside of Washington has any confidence in the insider retreads that advise the president on economic issues. They don’t seem to have a clue.
Listen to what will be a litany from the candidates in this election season about how they will create jobs. But don’t believe a world of it if they won’t tell you how they will do it and what kind of jobs they will be.