Monday, July 11, 2011

Who represents the unemployed in the deficit ceiling talks?

With all the uproar in DC over the debt ceiling there is little talk about jobs.  The 14 million unemployed Americans have no seat on the negotiating table.  They have no lobbyists, they have no yachts or corporate jets to loan out to supreme court justices or no large campaign contributions for legislators.  Last year during the elections we heard nothing but jobs jobs from the republicans.   This is the 7th consecutive month the republicans have controlled the house and the 7th consecutive month that they have introduced or passed 0 jobs bills.  Of course, its silly to expect the party that's concerned about tax breaks for corporate jet owners to do something about jobs.  That's why some people call the republican party the RepubliCon party because they con the voters so well.  Instead of working to provide opportunities to workers the republicans have been working to restrict rights of voters, women, and unions.  It's very unamerican of the republicans who voted for two wars, two large "stimulative" tax cuts and a prescription drug bill to suddenly announce they don't want to pay for their 8 year spending spree.  Eric Cantor, voted for the Bush tax cuts to the rich, the two wars, and the prescription drug bill which cost trillions of dollars.  Now he is saying that we need to cut spending and he doesn't want to pay our debt?  That sounds like a freeloader, free rider or mooch to me, I'll take all this stuff but I'm not paying for it.  Perhaps, the republicans are fussing over the debt ceiling in an attempt to distract us from the unemployment issue.  The unemployed do have a voice in Nobel prize winner Paul Krugman
Paul Krugman:  "No, We Can't? or Won't?"Paul Krugman, Laureate of the Sveriges Riksban...                           Image via Wikipedia
"a destructive passivity has overtaken our discourse. Turn on your TV and you’ll see some self-satisfied pundit declaring that nothing much can be done about the economy’s short-run problems (reminder: this 'short run' is now in its fourth year), that we should focus on the long run instead. This gets things exactly wrong. The truth is that creating jobs in a depressed economy is something government could and should be doing. Yes, there are huge political obstacles to action — notably, the fact that the House is controlled by a party that benefits from the economy’s weakness. But political gridlock should not be conflated with economic reality. Our failure to create jobs is a choice, not a necessity — a choice rationalized by an ever-shifting set of excuses."

 This chart shows the current recovery against all the other recessions since 1948.   Doesn't look like much of a recovery to me.  During the 8 years of the Bush administration funding for infrastructure spending was as hard to find as Bush's WMD's.  We have a back log of bridges, highways, sewers, water lines and gas lines that need upgrading.  Interest rates are low, wages are low and we have millions of unemployed ready to get America back in shape.  The only thing missing is the will of our political leaders.
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