The President's Jobs Plan
Robert B. Reich
In response to last week's awful jobs report -- unemployment rising to 9.2 percent in June, with only 18,000 new jobs (125,000 are needed each month just to keep up with the growth in the potential labor force) -- what did the president do?
That, apparently, is his jobs plan.
To call it inadequate would be a gross understatement.
Here's what the president should have said:
This job recession shows no sign of ending. It isn't a temporary jobless recovery. It can no longer be blamed on supply-side disruptions from
No, this is something else -- and it's going to be with us for years unless
We've been wasting time in a game of chicken over raising the debt ceiling.
It's pure extortion. Republicans want you to believe the deficit is responsible for the bad economy. The truth is the reverse. When the private sector cannot and will not spend enough to get the economy going, the public sector must step into the breach and spend more.
My first priority is to get Americans back to work. I'm proposing a jobs plan that will do that.
First, we'll exempt the first
Second, we'll re-create the
Young people who can't find jobs will reclaim and improve our national parklands, restore urban parks and public spaces, recycle products and materials, and insulate public buildings and homes.
Third, we'll enlarge the Earned Income Tax Credit so lower-income Americans have more purchasing power.
Fourth, we'll lend money to cash-strapped state and local governments so they can rehire teachers, firefighters, police officers, and others providing needed public services. This isn't a bailout. When the economy improves, normal scheduled federal outlays to these states and locales will drop by an amount necessary to recover the loans.
Fifth, we'll amend the bankruptcy laws so struggling homeowners can declare bankruptcy on their primary residence. This will give them more bargaining leverage with their lenders to reorganize their mortgage loans. Why should the owners of commercial property and second homes be allowed to include these assets in bankruptcy but not regular homeowners?
Sixth, we'll extend unemployment benefits to millions of Americans who have lost part-time jobs. They'll get partial benefits proportional to the time they put in on the job.
Yes, most of these measures will require more public spending in the short term. But unless we get this economy moving now, the long-term deficit problem will only grow worse.
I'm also aware some in
But I am eager to take them on. Average Americans are hurting, and their pain is not going away.
We bailed out
My most important goal is restoring jobs and wages. Those who oppose me must explain why doing nothing is preferable.
- It's Back! The Misery Index Rides Again
- The President's Jobs Plan
- Budget Debate Has Troublesome Historical Underpinnings
- 4 Bright Spots for the American Economy
- Job Growth Dismal, Unemployment Hits 9.2 Percent in June
- Why Small Businesses Aren't Fueling Job Creation in This Recovery
- Public Sector Job Cuts Threaten Economic Recovery
- Handling Big Contradictions
- How the Crippled Housing Market Affects Job Seekers
- Think Startups are Fueling the Recovery? Not So Much
- Tax Havens: Shady Deals
- As The 'Mancession' Peters Out, The 'Race-Cession' Is Still Going Strong
- Obama Trains Spotlight on Flailing Economy
- Strategic Petroleum Reserve Release Could Give Brief Economic Stimulus
- What to Watch for As QE2 Ends
- How Health Care Can Save or Sink America
- Crude Predicament: The Era of Volatile Oil Prices
- Financial Rebalancing Act: Stop Worrying About Global Flow of Capital
- Globalization and Unemployment
- Why the Jobs Situation Is Worse Than It Looks
- Gas Prices Fall for Fifth Consecutive Week
- 6 Ways to Fix the Housing Market
- Momentum Grows for Payroll Tax Cut
- GOP's War on Workers' Rights Undermines the Economy
- The Department of Food Subsidies
- Federal Reserve Forecasts Weaker Growth for 2011 and 2012
- Half Of Americans Suffering While Rich Prosper
- Existing Home Sales Fall 3.8% in May To Lowest Rate in Six Months
- Savings in American Banks Reach Record $1.45 Trillion in May
- Executive Pay Rise Cause Of Widening Income Gap In United States
- Our Aging World and How It Drives U.S. Economy
- The President Shouldn't Go Over to the Supply Side
- Is 'Made In America' Making a Comeback?
- Most States' GDP Shows Economic Growth, But Causes Vary
- Left Unchecked Debt Problem Could Have Serious Consequences
- Strategic Default: Does It Make Sense for Troubled Homeowners?
- Back Toward a Double Dip
- Something We Can Say With Certitude: The Economy Stinks!
- 5 Reasons to Be Optimistic About the Economy
- Breaking Down the Debt-Ceiling Debate
- Jobs Report Shows Market Still Sputtering
- Recent Glut Of Discouraging Economic Indicators
- Why Home Prices Are Double Dipping
- Washington Plays Chicken With the Market
- A World of Three Reserve Currencies -- Good or Bad?
- Eliot Spitzer's 10 Rules To Fixing the Economy and Corporate Mismanagement
- How Bad Is the Pension Problem?
- Spending Caps Have a Mixed History Dealing with the Deficit
- No Reason to Cheer Drop in Jobless Claims
- Will the Banks be Held Accountable?
- The Case for and Against The TARP Bailout
- To Fix the Budget Deficit Raise Corporate Taxes
- The Battle for the Soul of the GOP
- Why Washington Should Pay Attention to the Economy Here and Now
- Unemployment Jeopardizing U.S. Economic Recovery
- What a Weak Dollar Means for Consumers
- Why Copper Is the Metal to Watch
- On Gas Prices Obama Should Lead or Get Out of the Way
- Putting $4 Gas In Perspective
- Why Congress Cannot Fix Your Gas Prices Pain
- Dear Class of 2011: Good Luck You're Really Going to Need It
- Should You Worry About Stagflation?
- If 'America Can Do Whatever We Set Our Mind To,' How Come ...
- Wall Street Lobbyists Trying to Sway Tea Party
- The Wageless Recovery
- 9 Things We Learned From the Fed's First Press Conference
- National Debt Crisis Is an Existential Threat
- Standard and Poors Forecast Ammunition in Debt Ceiling Debate
- United States Budget: Money Worries
- China No. 1 in Five Years? Not so Soon
- 5 Economies Worse Off Than the United States
- Beware the Middle Ground of the Great Budget Debate
- What Standard & Poor's U.S. Outlook Downgrade Means
- Medicare Isn't the Problem, It's the Solution
- 5 Numbers That Could Rattle the Recovery
- Why the World Caught a Cold When the U.S. Housing Market Sneezed
- Why We Must Raise Taxes on the Rich
- Reaganomics? Meet 'Ryan-omics'
- The Frightening Truth About the Economy
- 7 Problems That Could Derail the Global Economic Recovery
- How the National Debt Affects You
- March Jobs Report Brings Good News -- Finally
- Spreading Wealth the Right Way
- 3 Reasons the U.S. Economy Remains in a Coma
- The Biggest Lies About Jobs
- Why Higher Unemployment Might Not Be a Bad Thing
- Not Raising the Debt Ceiling Would Worsen the Fiscal Situation
- We Can't Be Serious About the Debt Ceiling Until We Fix Spending
- It's BACK! The Return of Stagflation
- Federal Budget: Why Triangulation Won't Work
- Quitting Fear Inc
- Republican Obsession with Spending Cuts will Kill Jobs
- What Happens After Quantative Easing 2 Ends?
- What You Really Pay for at the Pump
- Brighter Job Outlook for Class of 2011
- Jobs Report Shows Growth, But Nothing to Shout About
- The Real News on Jobs
- The Democrats' Lame Response to the Republican Shakedown
- The Slow Decline of North America
- 'So Be It' Economics
- St. Louis Mayor Discusses Economy, Education, and Future of Cities
- The Incredible Shrinking Budget Debate
- The Wages of Infamy
- A G-Zero World: New Economic Club Will Produce Conflict Not Cooperation
- The Post-Washington Consensus
- Currency Wars: Then and Now
- Currencies Are Not the Problem
- Far East and Middle East: A Study in Contrasts?
- After Obama, the Deluge
- Obama Tax Proposal Would Only Hurt American Energy Competitiveness
- The Great Jobs Recession Goes On
- America's Corporate Recovery Is More Fragile Than You Think
- Impending Debate Over Spending Cuts Has Nothing to Do With Reviving Economy
- Pruning Farm Subsidies
- The Wealth Gap Around the World
- Obama's Budget Falls Short of Deficit Panel Recommendations
Available at Amazon.com:
The President's Jobs Plan | Politics
(c) 2011 TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.