Thursday, September 8, 2011

Hey, I Don't Want To Brag Even More, But...

After reading the text of The Greatest Speech On Jobs Evah, I have a few observations:
  • He mentions the amount we'll be cutting spending and the deficit. He doesn't mention how much we'll be spending on jobs. I don't think this is an accident. It's a tell. He wants to cut spending, particularly on all those safety net programs that we can't afford. My guess is that he thinks any money not spent blowing up a foreign country is wasted.
  • As Taylor Marsh mentions in that link, he repeats the phrase "pass the bill" like it's a mantra. That's another thing that's important - pass something, anything. We learned that in the health care reform debacle.
  • Re: the $4,000 tax break for hiring someone who has been out of work for more than six months. Are you kidding me? That isn't going to persuade anyone to hire. Hiring anyone more skilled than a burger flipper for a year costs at least ten times that. Are you going to risk that kind of money to keep someone on for however long they have to be there to qualify for the tax break?

    Of course, there's also the little problem that, without demand, employers aren't going to hire anyone. As Obama himself has mentioned previously, U.S. corporations are reportedly sitting on $2 trillion in cash that they just aren't using right now. Cash isn't the problem. Demand is the problem. Demand is a problem because there are no fucking jobs.

    The people who think this is doing anything for the average worker are idiots.
  • He mentions all these things like infrastructure repair that we're supposed to be doing. The amount of money he mentioned the other day wouldn't cover a tenth of what's needed in the next few years. Plus, how are we going to do this, make it so none of us live long enough to qualify for Medicare?
Given how little we can expect on this issue, it's probably about time to try out some slogans for the Obama O-Twelve Campaign.
  • If you think he sucks, you should see the Other Guys
  • For when anything is better than nothing
  • Hey, you're not a racist, are you?
There's not much to work with.

UPDATE: In addition to some of the things I mentioned, Ian Welsh adds this thought:
There are no structural fixes for what is wrong with the economy here. There is nothing to deal with the fact that even if it did work (it won’t) it would cause a run up in commodity prices, especially oil, which would crush the recovery anyway. There is nothing to deal with the fact that most US banks are still bankrupt, except some incentives for Americans to buy houses so securitization can continue. There is nothing to stop employers from calculation the tax rebates as effective raises, and thus not offering raises themselves (which is what they will do.) There is nothing to make any corporation which already doesn’t pay taxes (more than you want to think about) to pay those taxes.

The Short on the President’s “Job Plan”
I'm too tired and disinterested to go back and find where I wrote this about the Obama Administration's past policies at the moment, but none of this is new. Ian's right, none of what the President mentioned will fix any of this., and it's part of the reason the economy needs all that stimulus that it isn't getting.

But that's nothing new.


lawguy said...

Well, look at it this way: Obama has never given a speech where he promised us something and then turned around and did some back room deals to make sure we didn't get it.

The number of people who think this speech is a good/great thing amazes me. If gullibility were a natural resource we could sell we would be out of the recession today.

Cujo359 said...

And unlike most resources, this one is inexhaustible.