Your Labor Day Reading Assignment or, How Obama Could Create Jobs & Not Just Destroy Them

[This video was originally released on January 25, 2011. Obama now assures America that he is indeed focused on jobs, jobs, jobs, and will give a speech later this week on that very topic.]

This year's Labor Day is marred by reports of zero job creation, record levels of unemployed teenagers, persistent high unemployment, and more.

Here's some Reason perspective on what's causing this to continue long after the recession officially ended and what to do to get people back to work.

First up, back on August 12, we asked a series of economists, journalists, and commentators to answer the question, "What Would You Do to Improve Job Growth?" 

Here are snippets from some of the dozen-plus responses:

Deirdre McCloskey [economist, University of Illinois, Chicago]

..."Jobs" are deals between workers and employers, and so "creating" them out of unwilling parties is impossible. The state, though, can outlaw deals, and has. So: eliminate the minimum wage for people younger than 25. The resulting boom in jobs for young people will amaze. Maybe it will inspire voters to get the state out of the job-outlawing business. Probably not, so sure are we that the state "protects" by stopping deals between willing parties....

Bryan Caplan [economist, George Mason University]

...Easy: Cut employers’ share of the payroll tax....

Ira Stoll [FutureofCapitalism.org]

...Congress should stop extending unemployment benefits, and better yet, restructure the unemployment insurance program or block-grant it to the states to allow them to experiment with ways of doing so. The idea is to change the program so it creates an incentive for recipients to get a job, rather than an incentive for them to remain unemployed....

Amity Shlaes [author, The Forgotten Man]

...The single thing the U.S. could do to ensure long-term growth, including that of jobs, is to reform our Federal Reserve so that monetary policy is rules-based, not personality-based. Even a return to the gold standard would do, though it is also possible to fashion a monetary regime under which the currency is pegged to a basket of commodities....

Read the whole set here.

[Nick Gillespie talks Obama and jobs on Fox Business' Freedom Watch with Judge Andrew Napolitano on Sept. 1, 2011]

Last week, I wrote about about Obama's coming jobs speech and discussed "Rhetoric, Reality, and the Great Recession." A snippet:

The starting point of any serious discussion about jobs, jobs, jobs should be the brutal fact that government, regardless of who is running it, cannot create positions apart from public-sector jobs. And those in most cases are zombie jobs that can only survive on infusions of fresh cash taken elsewhere from the economy via taxes. That's why state and local payrolls are being cut as federal stimulus dollars dry up....

Given that we're entering the thick of the presidential campaign season, there's a real sense that politics will be in a holding pattern. GOP presidential candidates such as former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman have released jobs programs that take comprehensive looks at how to fix the economy. Apart from any of their particulars, such plans are not near-term fixes and not simply because the people proposing them don't already occupy the White House. There are no short-term, rock-solid fixes. There's only a long, slow slog ahead that may well be about government doing less rather than frenetically doing more. That's a course of action which will require the sort of leadership that has been long absent in Washington.

Whole thing here.

Back in 2010, Reason.tv took a look at California's employment situation and concluded, "More Taxes or More Jobs?: California Shows You Can't Have Both." Take a look as actual business owners talk about the job-creating climate in a state that, just like the federal government, spent massive amounts of money under Republicans and Democrats yet never seemed to have two red cents to rub together at the end of the day.

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  • Luke Ho-Hyung Lee||

    Nick,

    I hope you have a few moment to take a look at this: Job Creation in the Modern Informatio­n Age http://goo.gl/ig0z1

    Sincerely,

    Luke

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    I wonder if after "Snooki-gate", Obama had to assemble the best pop culture advisers to stay up-to-date on the latest trends.

  • ||

  • Ice Nine||

    These are the guys that Obama is supporting, right? Would it be gauche to say, "LOL!"

  • ||

    These are the guys we pissed all over the war powers act to put in power. And since we never put any ground forces in, we really have no way to control them.

  • BradK||

    Not sure what ground forces have to do with it. We've got plenty in Iraq and Afghanistan, yet we don't control shit in either.

    It will be interesting to see if the left-leaning MSM will continue to give BHO a free pass on Libya though. "Everything he does is the absolute best thing!"

  • x,y||

    Still not as bad as his unfettered support for the drug war, which has harmed far more blacks than this.

  • BradK||

    And yet blacks still overwhelmingly support him. Identity politics will always prevail over actual performance.

  • Blacks||

    We demand that the boot on our necks be jet black!!

  • BradK||

    Jus' don't make us polish it!

  • ||

    The headline is showing up, but the story isn't. Are they self-censoring perhaps?

  • Ha Ha.||

    I see that corrupt windbag Rep Maxine Waters is proposing a trillion-dollar jobs program. Doesn't she know they've already tried that and it pushed the economy further into the ditch?

  • ||

    Hey at the stroke of a pen we can create jobs like MAGIC! It's almost as easy as playing "Spot the douchebag in this picture"

  • ||

    In that pictures defense, the girl on the far left in the brown sunglasses is pretty cute.

  • ||

    Possibly. It's rather difficult to tell with the sunglasses covering half her face. Why not just wear a helmet?

  • BakedPenguin||

    If I didn't think she was with the guy with the Royals hat, I'd say the petite girl next to her was cute, too.

  • ||

    The wigger in the oversized baseball cap? Oh wait, that doesn't narrow it down.

  • Amakudari||

    I do like how D-Bag Alpha is wearing a Gaddafi t-shirt, though.

  • ||

    All of them?

  • ||

    tap-out clothing is the ultimate douche-bag indicator. sure, if you are an actual MMA fighter and/or in a MMA gym andor sponsored by them, fine

    but EVERY fucking douche bag wears tap out

    it's almost a foolproof douchebag indicator

  • ||

    AMEN.

    I bought ONE T-shirt back in 2004 and glad I threw it away after a year.

  • A Serious Man||

    The same Maxine Waters who, while listening to the Shell CEO explain the concept of supply and demand to her, threatened to nationalize the oil industry.

    I find it difficult to assume ignorance before malice.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v.....re=related

  • Jeffersonian||

    But with Waters, it's really not that hard.

  • BradK||

    I would tend to agree, though Maxine Waters really is this clueless. There are no problems that government can't legislate and regulate us out of.

    "Don't say socialize!!!"

  • ||

    Can't some people be both ignorant and malicious? I'd say that sums her up.

  • oncogenesis||

  • Doktor Kapitalism||

    Seen that one before. How do these people get into office?

    Hint: the average voter knows next to nothing.

  • ||

    And that screen shot is waaayyy too close to being an upskirt of Joy Behar.

    Why do you hate your readers Reason?

  • Achtung Coma Baby||

    I'd eat her pussy.

  • Amakudari||

    This is just gross. I thought the West had moved beyond eating housepets.

  • ||

    Huh? I can't turn away from that perfectly creased pant leg . . .

  • ||

    the brutal fact that government, regardless of who is running it, cannot create positions apart from public-sector jobs.

    ______________________

    Well then that's exactly what we'll do, smart guy. The governmeent needs people to run the facebook pages of administrative agencies, and it needs to pay them $100k a year to do it.

  • sevo||

    And we'll sell our Greek paper to pay for it!

  • ||

    I don't care about Obama. I do care that Andy Murray and Mardy Fish are still in the US Open, though, as I am rooting for them. And I just bought a new racket--normally $180--for $99, and get it today, which makes me happy.

  • ||

    I saw Fish on the first day.

  • ||

    You mean you were at the game in Queens? You're talking about the match against Kamke? I caught a lot of the Roddick/Sock match and the Fish/Anderson match. Both good.

  • ||

    Yup.

  • ||

    Nice. How good were your seats?

    The Stosur/Kirilenko match from yesterday was pretty good too.

  • ||

    Top level of course. Right in the middle though, and I had my binoculars.

  • ||

    My favorite match that I saw live was Kvitova vs. Dulgheru. A 48th-ranked Romanian beat 5th ranked Kvitova. Pretty impressive.

  • ||

    Mardy's playing Tsonga right now, and is already down a set. Come on, Mardy.

  • ||

    Don't worry man, he's got this.

  • ||

    And I just can't see Dolgopolov being able to take Djokovic down. Djokovic is almost fucking unstoppable right now in his career (which is why he's ranked #1).

    I'd really like to see an unusual final, though; something without Djokovic, Nadal, or Federer in it. Murray vs Fish would be cool.

  • ||

    Don't worry man, he's got this.

    No he didn't. So much for Mardy. I hope Andy Murray can do better.

  • PantsFan||

    That ginger? I'm going with the dirty Serb.

  • ||

    Why root for the Brit? Andy Young is still going strong.

  • Joe 6 Pack||

    OK, ladies, enough with the tennis. Are those boys making you wet?

  • ||

    I don't root by nationality, but by who I like. I like Murray; he has a very methodical style. Same for Mardy.

    Djokovic will probably win, though.

  • ||

    Yes, Murray hasn't had a very good year imo.

  • PantsFan||

    Does Andy Murray look more like Chris Martin or Jenson Button?

  • ||

    Chris Martin

  • ||

    And I had to google both those names by the way, britfag.

  • PantsFan||

    you're such a muppet

  • ||

    Obama: GOP must put country ahead of party

    In a preview of the jobs speech he will deliver on Thursday to Congress, Obama said there are numerous roads and bridges that need rebuilding in the U.S., and over 1 million unemployed construction workers who are available to build them. He was speaking on Labor Day, the holiday that celebrates the American worker and marks the traditional end of summer.

    Obama said that with widespread suffering, "the time for Washington games is over" and lawmakers must move quickly to create jobs.

    "But we're not going wait for them," he said at an annual event sponsored by the Metropolitan Detroit AFL-CIO. "We're going to see if we've got some straight shooters in Congress. We're going to see if congressional Republicans will put country before party.

    I guess all those roads and bridges have fallen apart since the $700B stimulus two years ago.

  • fish||

    The lifespan of the roads and bridges was timed so that they expired just in time for "O" to have them rebuilt in order to coincide with his re-election campaign.

    This really isn't so difficult!

  • BigT||

    Couldn't they just dig some holes and re-fill them? All those traffic detours are tiresome.

  • sevo||

    "Obama said that with widespread suffering, "the time for Washington games is over""

    I don't think he knows what that means.

  • Xenocles||

    The Nationals have sucked since before they moved. I agree it's about time for Washington games to end.

  • On behalf of everyone||

    don't forget the Crapitals

  • Xenocles||

    And we already forgot the Wizards.

  • BigT||

    Bring back 'Bullets', which at least accurately reflects the DC scene.

  • ||

    As long as you have Rex Grossman, you have hope.

  • ||

  • Gannicus||

    It can't be asked enough of liberals: "We just spent almost $800 billion in stimulus that was supposed to go to shovel ready infrastructure improvements. What happened to those projects, and if they did not do what was claimed then why should you be trusted with more?"

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    "We're engaging in experimentation, like FDR! We don't quibble about FDR just because his economic policies didn't work, do we? No, he's among the most popular presidents ever!"

  • ||

    Oh, I quibble. And then some.

    One day I'll have to post the picture of me pretending to beat the shit out of FDR's wheelchair statue in DC. Guess I'm lucky the Park Police didn't give me the dance mob treatment.

  • ScottyB||

    It wasn't a stimulus at all. It was a patch- its real intent was to prevent mass public-sector layoffs in the face of crumbling local, state and federal budgets. The thought was that we could keep these folks (teachers, bureacrats, firemen, etc.) in their jobs and spending money for a while so that unemployment and the economy wouldn't crash for the next 12 months. They assumed (wrongly) that the economy and private sector would improve enough in those 12 months so that when the public jobs started shrinking (as they are now), those losses would be more than offset in private sector hiring.

    A good plan in theory, although (a) it turned out to be overly optimistic, and (b) it was "sold" as one thing and not what it really was.

  • Roger Murdock||

    Speaking to the AFL-CIO in Detroit about how to create jobs . Um, blind leading deaf, dumb, blind and club-footed.

  • ||

  • A fan||

    Maybe he wants to see Dad.

  • ||

    Awesome comment at the BIG! RED! BOLD! story over on Drudge right now:

    They see the writing on the wall and like a trapped and wounded animal, all they know is to froth at the mouth and bite. And like any rabid or trapped animal, it's days are numbered.

  • Gannicus||

    I guess the new civility thing was supposed to end as the campaign ramps up.

  • Violence-Loving POTUS||

    Head- and window-busting lovers of old-fashioned ultra-violence: Barack's Red Guards.

  • Hey, Barry||

    Why don't you sign up some of your head-busting union folks for military duty in Africa and the Mideast? Sounds like they're patriotic Americans ready to get it on.

  • ||

    I wonder what the Teamsters position on the 2nd amendment is.

  • BakedPenguin||

    I'm pretty sure they want to be on the "pointing" end.

  • BakedPenguin||

    Shit! "Aiming" end. Joke fail.

  • Michael||

    It's still funny. You win.

  • Liberty 4 me but not 4 thee||

    One thing that Libertarians seem to share with Republicans and Democrats right now is the notion that, for some unstated reason, the "correct" government policy will, perforce, result in perpetual and uninterrupted "full employment," and that our society will not have to deal with the problem of mass unemployment and underemployment if only the "correct" government policy can be enacted. Employment problems are conceptualized as nothing but government-policy problems, completely denuded of all extrinsic causes.

    These are, to put it tactfully, "faith-based" assumptions. Democrats think we can stimulate our way to full employment; Republicans think we can tax-cut our way to full employment; Libertarians think we can deregulate our way to full employment. It ain't necessarily so.

    In a free economy, much goes to waste. Factories sit abandoned. Crops go to seed in the field. Unsold food sits on the shelf, then rots in dumpsters. And the same is true of workers. Competent employees ready and willing to work may just sit untapped because the people with the resources to hire them have too little use for them.

    This idea that the government has some kind of magical full-employment button, but refuses to push it, because it is so perversely infatuated with taxes, or regulation, or austerity, is arrant nonsense.

  • ||

    Libertarians think we can deregulate our way to full employment.

    I don't. But I think it could go a long way toward bringing employment up. And I guess relaxing immigration laws is a deregulation of sorts, but that would fly in the face of your "full employment" strawman.

    Competent employees ready and willing to work may just sit untapped because the people with the resources to hire them have too little use for them.

    In a free market no one is forced to hire anyone for any reason. And nothing would be stomping those people "ready and willing to work" from starting their own business.

    This idea that the government has some kind of magical full-employment button, but refuses to push it, because it is so perversely infatuated with taxes, or regulation, or austerity, is arrant nonsense.

    Got no dog in that sled.

  • Liberty 4 me but not 4 thee||

    weird

  • ||

    Why do you respond to the retard?

  • ||

    Because...some human-like creatures out there actually think that way?

  • ||

    That's un-possible. I mean, they'd have to be retards. We're doing all we can, but some of these retards are extremely clever.

  • ||

    And unfortunately the concept of Peak Retard is a myth. Do bad we can't burn them for firewood.

  • R||

    Isn't "clever retard" an oxymoron?

    Or is it just a retard that out retards other retards?

    A negative cleverness, perhaps? |cleverness|

    hmmm....

  • ||

    Of course; it's a quote from a Strangers With Candy episode. That's why it's funny.

  • ||

    So basically it's "look he got kicked in the balls heh heh" for the Perrier crowd.

  • Copernicus||

    Definition:

    retard verb

    to make something slower

    Ex: A rise in interest rates would severely retard economic growth.

    (Definition of retard verb from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary)

    Even if I were retarded by 50% I would be "cleverer" than all of you.

  • Copernicus||

    Definition:

    retard verb

    to make something slower

    Ex: A rise in interest rates would severely retard economic growth.

    (Definition of retard verb from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary)

    Even if I were retarded by 50% I would be "cleverer" than all of you.

  • ||

    I was very offended when we covered retarded potentials in electricity & magnetism my senior year.

  • ||

    To show we're not afraid of retardedness.

  • ||

    Oh, you're clearly not afraid of it, Commodore.

  • ||

    D-

  • ||

    Cite any libertarian saying that we can get full employment.

  • mustard||

    At least minorities had full employment in the South before the Civil War. It's kind of sad that the Republicans have been even worse than plantation owners for them.

  • tarran||

    I thought that without the Republicans willingness to slaughter hundreds of thousands of southerners there'd still be slavery? Was I wrong?

  • BakedPenguin||

    Henry Hazlitt, in Economics In One Lesson. I don't remember the exact quote, but it was something to the effect of '...if the goal is to have full employment, that's easy. Just stop all these trains carrying cargo across the country. Imagine the number of jobs if people were to carry that same cargo on their backs.'

  • oncogenesis||

    This idea that the government has some kind of magical full-employment button, but refuses to push it, because it is so perversely infatuated with taxes, or regulation, or austerity, is arrant nonsense.

    Strawman.

  • ||

    No morning links? How am I supposed to know what's going on in the world?

  • Doktor Kapitalism||

    Google News. That way you're not flying blind on the weekends.

  • Mop Guy||

    Another comment thread, another bucketful of spooge.

    At least I got full employment.

  • On behalf of everyone||

    The new civility:
    Biden At AFL-CIO Rally: "You Are The Only Folks Keeping The Barbarians From the Gates"
    http://www.hapblog.com/2011/09.....-only.html

  • BakedPenguin||

  • ScottyB||

    IMO, we need to decouple health insurance frm employment. By doing so, we:
    remove HUGE costs from the business sector,
    remove even HUGER costs from small business,
    make employees more likely to switch jobs and/or move to pursue opportunities,
    take away a major disincentive from starting one's own business,
    and take away a major disincentive for small businesses to hire.

    A nationalized helath program is better than what we have now, although I would prefer a fully private-sector, free-market approach (with the feds only involvement MAYBE as a reinsurer)

  • A fan||

    "A nationalized helath program is better than what we have now"

    ...because then our lords and masters in DC will literally have you by the balls!

  • hmm||

    Nuke DC from orbit. It's the only way to be sure.

  • BakedPenguin||

    The Onion on Libya.

  • ||

    We laugh because it's funny, we cry because it's true.

  • CE||

    Jobs? Obama has actively worked to destroy jobs. He has raided peaceful and profitable businesses from medical marijuana dispensaries to raw milk producers to guitar makers. Throw in mandates for health care and other benefits for businesses over a certain size, and no wonder no one is hiring.

  • Atanarjuat||

    The moratorium on Gulf of Mexico oil drilling was a big one too.

  • CE||

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09.....ction.html

    Krugman not paying attention:

    Although you’d never know it listening to the ranters, the past year has actually been a pretty good test of the theory that slashing government spending actually creates jobs.

    Except that no spending has been slashed yet, and none is scheduled to be slashed.

  • Tony||

    Um, you're wrong. Much of the stimulus spending has been expiring, which is why states are having to lay off teachers and firefighters. Total federal spending is projected to be lower in the next two years. If spending is still high, it's not because of government stimulus efforts, it's because more people are slipping into income levels needing government assistance.

  • ||

    Ah, so not having a stimulus every year constitutes "slashing spending".

  • Tony||

    It was spending (which created jobs), that's now been slashed, and jobs losses are up. It's really not hard to follow: government pays people to work, therefore people work. You want to obfuscate that simple math with a catch-all argument that spending is arbitrarily high, and employment is low, therefore spending doesn't work. Well, what is it being spent on, and who says your arbitrary choice of "too much" spending is actually enough to work?

  • hmm ||

    Um, most of the spending as a percentage of GDP arguments aren't arbitrary at all? The theories/arguments are derived from watching past economies and systems. What is arbitrary is magically saying that government spending is clearly the reason jobs existed and that if true such a policy of government taxing or borrowing and then spending to employ people is a viable long run (or short run) model.

    There isn't a whole lot of simple math in the economics you're trying to argue. Actually the not so simple math and huge assumptions are what make your increase "G" to boost GDP argument work. On the surface the accounting identity itself is simple, but of course to make it actually work takes a little more work and digging.

  • ||

    this is like when politicians say "X program is getting CUT" when the RATE of increase is lowered.

    iow, program X gets a 5% increase a year, but congress changes it to 3% for next year.

    that's a "cut"

  • Tony||

    Tulpa's is arbitrary. And I'm not magically saying anything. The data are there. One of the simplest being that public sector jobs are counted in employment figures. I'm sure you're interested; libertarians clearly aren't, as they don't deal in math, but theory. To the extent that complex factors interfere, real-world facts prove them to be minor in comparison to the effect of unemployment on GDP.

  • Jordan||

    One of the simplest being that public sector jobs are counted in employment figures.

    Which is meaningless. The government could employ everyone and that figure would be the envy of the world.

  • Tony||

    What's your point?

  • Tony||

    Government paychecks aren't real money?

  • hmm ||

    They are coerced money with more leakage than private sector paychecks.

  • ||

    Government paychecks aren't real money?

    No, they won't be real money if the govt is cutting a paycheck for everyone in the country.

  • sevo||

    "The data are there."
    Yes, the data shows you don't have a clue, shithead.

  • Jordan||

    Paying people and generating wealth are 2 entirely different things. Ask a Zimbabwean.

  • Atanarjuat||

    (which created jobs)

    The stimulus created lots of jobs eh?
    From 2009:
    Obama's Stimulus Plan: Failing by Its Own Measure

  • hmm (Obamanomicatrician)||

    Exactly!!!

  • Liberty 4 me but not 4 thee||

    state
    and
    local
    governments
    have
    been
    cutting
    spending
    even
    as
    the
    federal
    government
    offered
    some
    stimulus
    directly
    to
    them
    --
    does
    writing
    vertically
    help
    this
    bucket
    of
    bozos
    absorb
    the
    concept
    of
    differences
    in
    spending
    at
    different
    levels
    of
    government
    or
    is
    it
    just
    hopeless?

  • tarran||

    No, dude, it just identifies you as a retard. And fortunately, we have ways of removing the retards so that we can focus the more meaningful commentary.

  • Dave c||

    Is there a Safari version of that thing?

  • ||

    WTH. I was just working on a Python script to do some of those exact things.

    Mine does re-order posts in chronological order though. It doesn't look nearly as nice though.

  • ||

    Also it lets you ignore people based on regexps (buh-bye Jo[hn]n[y] [L[o]n]g[t[o]r[s]o]). Just have to get it to work with Firefox et al now.

  • A fan||

    Y
    o
    u

    d
    o
    u
    c
    h
    e
    b
    a
    g
    !
    !
    !
    !

    M
    i
    s
    s

    t
    h
    i
    s
    ?

    http://reason.com/blog/2011/09.....al-governm

  • sevo||

    Guys!
    Trolls, starvation, etc.

  • Michael||

    I have a suspicion that today's troll posse is comprised of urban, liberal white kids who are more enlightened than thou but wouldn't know an honest day's pay from a "living wage" if it bit them in the ass.

    Take your pansy-ass cynicism to Rainbo or whatever fucking shitty art school bar you waste oxygen in before I start beating you clowns to within an inch of your lives at random.

  • ||

    It's one guy. One obsessive, mentally defective guy!

  • Michael||

    It may be just one guy, but it's the all-too-common brazen condescension that sets me off. Anyway, it's too late. The next ironically bespectacled hipster I run across is getting a complimentary knuckle sandwich.

  • Tony||

    the brutal fact that government, regardless of who is running it, cannot create positions apart from public-sector jobs.

    Brutal truism there. First, what's wrong with public sector jobs? Are they tainted? Not subject enough to the "efficiencies" of a unionless, outsourced private market? And if you're worried about the unsupported nature of government jobs, think about it: as long as there is a government and taxation, those jobs can exist if we want them to. By your own formulation about the inability of government to make policy to create private-sector jobs, public-sector jobs seem like the only option. You can bellyache about taking money out of more productive sectors of the economy, but there's plenty of money in our economy, it's just not being spend on employing people. So what's so much more productive and important going on? Is there something about the market status quo that is appealing to you?

    Because it seems that government policy can create jobs, just as long as it's your policy. Good for lowering expectations though, because I don't think you believe that anyway.

  • Jordan||

    You still haven't figured out the difference between wealth and money.

  • Tony||

    You still haven't figured out the difference between an argument and being a diction nazi. What's your point? Didn't have one?

  • Jordan||

    My point is that you think paying people to sit around and dig holes and fill them back in will improve our standard of living.

  • Jordan||

    Let me know if you need me to use smaller words.

  • Tony||

    What about paying them to fight fires and crime and teach children? Or building stuff we need. There's plenty to do before we have to resort to unproductive work.

    So are teachers and firefighters the equivalent of people who dig and fill in holes?

    Or do you have some other issue with public sector work? Not cut-throat enough like the good virtuous private sector?

  • sevo||

    "Not cut-throat enough like the good virtuous private sector?"
    Shithead, you should be paid not one penny more than the cheapest possible source of whatever it is you provide.
    Cutthroat? Dunno, shithead, do you lay around all day?

  • Tony||

    But it's been done other ways before, so why do we all have to buy into your lowest common denominator hellscape?

  • sevo||

    "why do we all have to buy into your lowest common denominator hellscape?"
    Why does shithead have to post lies?

  • Tony||

    You did just say every American worker should have to compete with starving peasant children in 3rd world countries, did you not?

  • Merdre||

    You, you got what I need but you say he's just a friend
    And you say he's just a friend, oh baby
    You, you got what I need but you say he's just a friend
    But you say he's just a friend, oh baby
    You, you got what I need but you say he's just a friend
    But you say he's just a friend

  • sevo||

    "First, what's wrong with public sector jobs? Are they tainted?"
    They produce no wealth, shithead.

  • tarran||

    Actually, that's not completely correct.

    Take the court system. A functioning court system, as opposed to no system for resolving disputes through argument - leaving only violence as the only option - does create wealth in that it makes saving for the future and engaging in risky business ventures a rational act.

    Now, one could argue that government courts are slow, cumbersome, have horrible customer service, and are thus horribly inefficient. This is my view.

    Even though the government courts are much worse than those systems which would arise in a free market where they could not compel their customers to do business only with them, even though they produce less wealth than their private counterparts would, that does not mean they do not add wealth to society.

  • sevo||

    "Take the court system. A functioning court system, as opposed to no system for resolving disputes through argument - leaving only violence as the only option - does create wealth in that it makes saving for the future and engaging in risky business ventures a rational act."
    Nope.
    The act itself produces no wealth.
    Through the enforcement of contract, it simply prevents the loss of wealth.
    To steal from Bastiat, it prevents the broken window. We need it, since there are foul people, but it is at best nothing other than a prevention of loss.

  • Tony||

    So courts (and police) are a necessary evil in a world where a totally free market would COMPLETELY FAIL TO FUNCTION without them. Call it producing or loss prevention, it's still wealth, and on top of that, it's allocated according to a government plan (it says what stuff is yours and what stuff is his). Wealth is essentially the exploitation of natural resources (God's welfare), so if people can find more efficient ways to divide that up, great, just don't claim it's something that violates the first law of thermodynamics.

  • tarran||

    Actually, non-governmental court systems function just fine. They are ruthlessly supressed by nation states since they tend to undermine state authority.

    See, for example, the English crown's attack on the Brehonic legal system.

    The numerous and decentralized legal systems of the late middle ages are all but extinct, and people living in the 20th century are largely unaware that such systems existed and functioned alongside each other, and so assume that such a regime must not be possible.

  • Tony||

    But I bet you can't find in history a system of laws that doesn't contain an element of coercion.

  • sevo||

    "But I bet you can't find in history a system of laws that doesn't contain an element of coercion."
    And I'll bet shithead thinks that supports shithead's statements.

  • tarran||

    300 years ago, I couldn't give an example of a society that didn't practice slavery. That does not mean that such a society is unpossible.

    The more libertarian societies, though, such as the Irish that were beyond the pale and followed Brehonic law, and the medeival Icelandic all-things were pretty close.

    Those systems predate classical liberalism's humanist awakening by a large number of years, and so did contain a number of elements that we would find barbaric.

    However, the internet has permitted some interesting companies offering arbitration services to open their doors, and I think that the governments' monopoly court system will begin to decline much like the postal service was killed by electronic mail, faxes and Federal Express and by Abolitionist hero and proto-anarchist Lysander Spooner.

  • sevo||

    "So courts (and police) are a necessary evil in a world where a totally free market would COMPLETELY FAIL TO FUNCTION without them."
    So shithead posts one more stupid assertion.
    What a surprise!

  • ||

    there is nothing wrong with public sector jobs that actually deal with the delivery of a service that taxpayers pay for. There is everything wrong with such jobs that are built on patronage, inefficient, and staffed by incompetents who believe themselves entitled to our paying for their pensions and other benefits.

  • sevo||

    "there is nothing wrong with public sector jobs that actually deal with the delivery of a service that taxpayers pay for."
    Even those, I would argue, are the sort of things for which we tolerate the government inefficiencies.

  • Tony||

    Inefficient compared to what? The private sector is totally inefficient at providing for national defense (or universal healthcare or education, etc.), so that's the very reasons government steps in. No, our bloated war machine isn't efficient as war machines go, but then it's only become more costly the more privatized it's become.

  • sevo||

    "The private sector is totally inefficient at providing for national defense"
    Yes, and that's the reason we tolerate $400 toilet seats, shithead

    "or universal healthcare or education, etc.), so that's the very reasons government steps in"
    Lie, and lie, shithead.

  • Tony||

    Why do so many productive heroes seem like total wastes of oxygen?

  • sevo||

    Why does shithead post such nonsense?

  • ||

    THREADJACK!!!

    lol .

    this dept. has NO policy against drinking and then driving... a POLICE CRUISER

    i just gotta say... wtf

    ST. LOUIS, Mo. - The St. Louis County Police is facing questions from the community after a man - upset after he was ticketed by an off-duty police officer - recorded that officer drinking and then driving his patrol car.

    After being ticketed on August 20, Luke Lamb encountered the officer later that evening drinking at a mixed martial arts event. He filmed the officer, then confronted him in the parking lot outside the bar, at which point the officer drove away.

    A County Police spokesperson told KDSK.com that there is no written policy against what the officer did, so long as his BAC is under the legal limit. The department's "Countywide Resident Officer Program" allows officers to take their patrol cars home and drive them off-duty.

    Watch the video below, and voice your opinion in the comments below - is it appropriate for an off-duty officer to drink in public while driving his patrol?

    http://www.policeone.com/off-d.....questions/

  • tarran||

    I haven't read the article, and I am going to comment. ;)

    What the hell is the problem with this? As old Bobby Peel pointed out police are merely civilians. If he wasn't in a squad car, would he be breaking the law? So why is his getting into a squad car make it a problem?

    Many Americans have a pants-wetting, hysterical attitude towards alcohol that leaves me utterly bemused.

  • Amakudari||

    Same here. If you're allowed to take a cruiser home and there's not a policy against drinking -- any amount -- then driving one, you're going to have cops drive it home after a beer or two, right?

    I can understand how some departments would have those rules to avoid exactly the kind of situation in the article. But it's not a crime if they don't.

  • ||

    Soooo, because I'm bored and before the power cuts out again I'll relate this little tale that's only tangentially related to this post.

    Where I live (Yuma, AZ) its raining like crazy, the first thunderstorm we've had in 2 years (damn near the only rain we've had at all this year). It started 30-45 minutes ago.

    The National Weather Service has just put out an advisory letting us know that its raining like crazy - 20 minutes after it started.

    What would we do without these guys?

  • ||

    ...Congress should stop extending unemployment benefits, and better yet, restructure the unemployment insurance program or block-grant it to the states to allow them to experiment with ways of doing so. The idea is to change the program so it creates an incentive for recipients to get a job, rather than an incentive for them to remain unemployed....

    Is there any data to back this up? I don't know a ton of people who are unemployed, but the few I do know would kill for a job. Worrying about perceived disincentives seems premature if the jobs aren't there in the first place.

  • tarran||

    They may be willing to kill for a job, but still holding out for a job in their old industry.

    I had a prospective client I was talking to who was in pretty bad shape. He was a computer programmer. He got laid off during the dot com bust. His retirement got thinned out to a shadow of its former glory (most emotional traders tend to buy high and sell low :().

    He got a job as a website designer working with static html. Got laid off.

    Got another job, introductory drupal developer. Got laid off.

    He has no savings. At the time, he had 9 months unemployment left. He was still looking for programming/IT jobs. He wasn't looking for jobs like "truck driver" or "waiter" or "check-out clerk at a grocery store".

    He told me he'd do that when he was down to three months on the clock.

    Only when the unemployment runs out, and the alternative is loss of home, car, inability to put food on the table do people exit their comfort zones, swallow their pride and do something that heretofore was beneath them or too weird.

    It's not that he is unwilling to work, he was holding out, quite rationally, for work that would probably pay better than an entry level in a position outside his expertise.

  • Tony||

    Underemployment is itself a problem. If twice as many people work for half the pay, what have you solved?

  • sevo||

    "If twice as many people work for half the pay, what have you solved?"

    The taxpayers aren't paying them to sit on their butts, shithead.

  • tarran||

    You have redistributed labor in to areas where the demand is the highest...

    You increase production of wealth to satisfy people's material needs...

    You reduce the costs of producing goods and services...

    Supply curves shift downwards.

    Resulting in a lower market clearing price for various goods and services and increased availability.

    The lower prices allow people to live on less income or save more easily.

  • tarran||

    Of course, if your goal is higher wages, the only way to do that is for firms to increase marginal productivity of workers.

    The only way to do that is through investments in capital goods that increase productivity.

    To produce these investments, you need
    a) increased savings
    b) a reduction in the various risks that cause investments to fail.

    For the up and coming politician, that means
    a) reducing taxes to allow people to save more.
    b) reducing spending of borrowed money (which crowds out private investment)
    c) reducing regulatory uncertainty - particularly in the form of legislating from the hip.

    Do those things, and the purchasing power of the ordinary worker would shoot up. Do the opposite and either wages fall, or you get massive unemployment.

  • sevo||

    "Is there any data to back this up?"
    http://big.assets.huffingtonpost.com/jpmorgan.pdf
    Since it's a PDF, I can't give you a pull quote, and of course all the correlation/causation arguments apply.

  • Tex||

    If lions had killed 48,000+ Americans in the past thirty years, there would not be a lion left alive on this planet. The U.S. Air Force would napalm jungles and drop daisycutters on zoos. People would shoot any lion on sight and it would be legal to put out traps for lions in public places where they had been responsible for the deaths of humans. Genetic engineers would design viruses to render lions sterile and then spray entire peninsulas which were identified as regions populated by lions. Politicians would run on strategic planks promising a "world without lions" where humans could live secure and peaceably. The most popular saying in the United States would be "the only good lion is a dead lion." Within a few short years, lions would only exist as stuffed displays in museums and in picture books.

    What we have now is a game preserve where lions are legally entitled to stalk and eat human beings, with government action to protect their rights to do so. Anyone who objects is simply a "lion-hater" who prefers humans over lions in a species-specific bigotry that cannot be tolerated.

    August 31, 2011
    A Violent Racist Game Claims More Victims
    By John T. Bennett
    www.americanthinker.com/2011/0.....ctims.html

  • ||

    nice. troll-o-meter: OFF THE FUCKING CHARTS!!!

    w000h00!

  • call it a lowball estimate ||

    Workplace bosses, who are four times more likely to be psychopathic than the general population, climb the career ladder by charming their superiors

    www.dailymail.co.uk/news/artic.....speak.html

  • lion hater||

    The Only Creatures Left Playing The Market Are Computers

    That's right, folks. Read it and weep.

    In place of an economy, we have a handful of computers creating a Potemkin village simulating economic activity.

    The end comes and it is Pythonesque.

    http://www.market-ticker.org/akcs-www?post=193037

  • -||

    Read it and weep.

    Nah.

  • ||

    meanwhile, there is this thing called untapped energy reserves. Why does America insist on NOT taking advantage of the resources literally under its feet? The energy sector pays pretty well, is not taxpayer-funded, and creates wealth.

  • Jordan Rivers||

    My point is that you think paying bosses to sit around and be psychopathic will improve our standard of living.

  • Danneskjold||

    There is nothing wrong with psychopathic bosses who actually deal with the delivery of an assfucking that their employees deserve. There is everything wrong with such executive jobs that are built on patronage, inefficient, and staffed by incompetents who believe themselves entitled to our paying for their pensions and other benefits.

  • C. Dundee||

    Jobs? The American capitalist has actively worked to destroy jobs. He has raided peaceful and profitable businesses from growing squash to berry gatherers to peace pipe makers. Throw in mandates for privation property land entitlement and other benefits for the privileged of a certain color, and no wonder no one is having any more fun.

  • Rufus Banger||

    eliminate the minimum wage for people younger than 25

    25 months, that is.

    Seriously, mandate a "living wage" for just towing the lion and be done with it.

  • Deregulate, deTITLEment||

    Relaxing privation property Land entitlement laws is a deregulation of sorts.

    Competent non-Poodles ready and willing to hunt and gather may just sit untapped because the people who grabbed the resources have too little use for them.

    In a free society, no one is forced to stay off tracts of Land for any reason. And nothing would be stomping those people "ready and willing to move about freely" from aiming their own arrows or planting some squash over there.

  • Attila the Huh||

    Huh?

  • sevo||

    Troll.
    No feed.

  • warteagle||

    Meanwhile, there is this thing called gardening the soil. Why does America insist on NOT taking advantage of the nurturing the fertile resources literally under its feet? The healthy food sector tastes pretty well, is not taxpayer-funded, and creates wealth.

  • Genie Bra||

    It features woven everlast technology, which means there are no uncomfortable hooks, wires or adjustable straps. This special material instantly conforms to your body's contour and doesn't lose shape, giving you a natural lift with soft, full-coverage lift cups. Also, the bra's wide comfort lift band gives you the support you need while preventing rolls and bulges.

  • Frailcisco d'Andaconia||

    It can't be asked enough of capitalist: "We just spent almost $800 billion your advertised shit that was supposed to make us happy. What happened to those promises, and if they did not do what was claimed then why should you be trusted with more?"

    "We're engaging in experimentation, like Hank Readen! We don't quibble about Hank Rearden just because his economic policies are fictional, do we? No, he's among the most popular fictional characters ever!"

  • Genie Bra||

    if you order today, you will get 2 nude, 2 white, and 2 black genie bras

  • utterly bemused||

    Many fibertarians have a pants-wetting, hysterical attitude towards Non-State sociopolitical typology that leaves me utterly bemused.

  • Jordan Rivers||

    You still haven't figured out the difference between the original affluent society and affluenza.

  • Adam Bomb||

    Nuke DC Dem Cities from orbit. It's the only way to be sure.

  • silva||

    I see that corrupt windbag Crapitalists are proposing a trillion-dollar work-for-them jobs program. Don't they know they've already tried that and it pushed the ecology further into the ditch?

    Hey at the stroke of a pen we can create Privation Property Land enTITLEment like MAGIC! It's almost as easy as Lebensraum.

  • Gabbo||

    all the children in Springfield are SOBs

  • shevo||

    Yes, and that's the reason fibertarians tolerate $400,000 toilet seats in executive bathrooms, shithead.

  • ||

    “Hanngush, that’s not a bad idea.” Smith said. “Illegal, of course, but under the circumstances I think our friends in Gyndonocia would understand. Set an immediate course for Pangar Nine. Have Nabbboq redirect power from the quadrothrusters to the hypo-conductor plates if needed. Mont, come with me and let’s get a quick inventory of what we have to offer the Pangarians.”

    Before the crew could leave the bridge, however, a blast rocked the ship. Smith was thrown forward, catching himself on a Pyllinam monitor.

    “What the hell?” Smith exclaimed. “That wasn’t from a Lnormill ray! It felt more like a quadro-helium redax beam or something!”

    “Captain!” Hanngush had made his way over to the front Bulard panel. “The vorostratus scope indicates that we are under attack by a Henuliort Juy-Ast ship using twin golluck sprayers!”

    Smith ran over to take a look for himself. Sure enough, readouts indicated an Irru class Tarmo fighter, carrying the markings of the Booklumghum Federation of Mo-Yu-Tyheng. The very same warship that was responsible for multiple harynings at the battle of Darnsforz. Only the Yeeefu’s anti-xos cannons could possibly stop them.

    Smith knew that the Nonix was in serious trouble.

  • hevo||

    the brutal fact that government, regardless of who is running it, cannot create privation property apart from big-government stolen Land enTitlement.

  • Genie Bra||

    Look at those knockers

  • God Sevo the Queen!||

    God Sevo the Queen! Shithead.
    God Shevo the Queen! Shavhead.
    God Shave the Queen! Sevohead.

  • Merdre||

    Robert Fisk asks a question about a question he never gets around to asking - or answering. http://www.independent.co.uk/o.....48438.html

  • ||

    Our Admin in Server,
    hallowed be your name.
    Your matrix come,
    your code be done,
    on client-side as it is on Server-side.
    Give us this day our daily comments,
    and forgive us our rants,
    as we also have forgiven our ranters.
    And lead us not into responding,
    but deliver us from troll.

  • Captain Trips||

    Another winner of a thread, I see.

  • ||

    Just had to fix one word, now it's perfect.

  • sevo||

    Trolls and calories. Watch out.

  • ||

    Maybe we're trying to make them die an untimely obesity-related death.

  • Captain Trips||

    It is sad that this is the wittiest repartee on the thread.

  • ||

    Our Admin in Server,
    hallowed be your name.
    Your web-page come,
    your code be done,
    on client-side as it is on Server-side.
    Give us this day our daily comments,
    and forgive us our rants,
    as we also have forgiven our ranters.
    And lead us not into responding,
    but deliver us from troll.

  • Merdre||

    These hipsters want you.

  • ||

  • Merdre||

    you use windows? you philistine.

  • ||

    you use a mac? you hipster douche.

  • Captain Trips||

    He uses Linux, and is a kernel-compiling moron. Get it right.

  • ||

    All the cool kids are using OS/2 Warp.

  • tarran||

    You laugh, but OS/2 was a kick ass operating system for its day. Much better from a user experience perspective than Win9x.

    I got to play with it in 2002, and was impressed.

  • Sidd Finch||

    [peeks in, runs away]

  • Mr. FIFY||

  • ||

    These Reason comment sections have really gone downhill lately. This is just terrible.

  • ||

    OK, how worthless is the spam filter when it can't even block people from doing the vertical text thing like shitstain up there.

  • Amakudari||

    And it does that while preventing Wikipedia links.

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