Archives for posts with tag: jobs

Yesterday, your humble correspondent called a medical provider and asked for some supplies to be sent to chez Cranky. He was told that there would be a several-day delay: due to all of the newly-insured people that were getting medical care, they were having to order more supplies, and hire more help to meet demand. I replied that I understood,and thanked the harried woman on the other end of the phone.

After hanging up, a victory yell was heard by everyone on earshot: because, you see, this was proof that the Affordable Care Act is working. Here’s why:
Number A: lots of newly-insured people are getting life-saving medical care.
Letter 2: people are getting jobs to help provide care to the newly insured.
Thirdly: companies that make medical supplies will likewise have to add more staff, and order more raw materials, which means more jobs further down the supply chain.
Finally: all these increases will result in price reductions due to economies of scale.

The ACA is a long way from perfection, I grant you: but it also takes us a long way towards better health care for us all.

Proven by this example, and millions of others just like it, across the country. Thanks, Mister President.

Mr. Blunt and Cranky

AllisonWilliam Allison kept this sign for 50 years. In 1963, he was 42 and participated in the March on Washington for Jobs and Justice. Now he’s 92 and did it again. With the same sign.

On the one hand, it’s depressing that such marches are still necessary, and the sign is still 100% relevant, a half century later. On the other, it’s uplifting to see someone with that much courage and determination.

Either way, it is a lesson to us all: when we feel like giving up on a cause, a task or a dream, look at Mr. Allison and realize that it is possible to keep fighting for what you believe in. Even when the struggle started long before you were born, and will continue after you will pass away. If we truly believe in something, we have to give it that kind of consistent devotion and unwavering commitment – and it can be done. He is living proof.

Let’s all take a breath, nut up, and keep working for what we believe in, love, and cherish. The only way to win is to keep showing up. And the only guaranteed way to lose is to give up.

Mr. Blunt and Cranky

The March on Washington was actually called the Great March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. Lots of people forget this and go with the short name, and that is a mistake. A big mistake.

What the organizers understood (and that too many of us have forgotten) is that civil rights and economic rights are two halves of the same whole: you cannot have one without the other. If you have all sorts of civil rights, but are living in a box under a bridge, are you really free? Of course not. You are trapped.

If you are stuck working at a Wal-Mart and are still needing food stamps to feed your kids and cannot organize to get better wages, are you free? Of course not. You are in a trap.

Millions of Americans are chained in these traps of low-wage and no-wage lives. They are told that they are free, but often have few if any choices. And if you have no choices, you have no freedom.

When we think about the speeches, the images, and the stories of the marchers during the anniversary of the March, let us also remember that Jobs and Freedom were the purpose of the event. And that both are always at risk, and must always be defended against those who would take them away.

Mr. Blunt and Cranky

This week’s Crown O’ Polished Turds goes to Ohio’s Guv-bot, Little Johnny Kasich (a German name meaning “a case full of sickness”). You see, one of his first acts as Governor was to steal a load of taxpayer money and hand it to a clandestine crowd of cronies under the guise of a “job creation” scheme called “JobsOhio”.

Oh, and you don’t need to know where the money went, or how it was used. Trust the Kasich, who made his fortune from the very same financial collapse that took away our money. It’s all secret, but who would have trouble trusting the millionaire buddies of our millionaire governor? (Never mind that Lehman Brothers collapsed while he was managing director thereof, while he kept his own money.) Trust the Kasich.

Ahh, but sadly, not everyone trusts Little Prince John: he lashed out at people who have the gall to question the unaudited handover of taxpayer cash to a shadowy group of greedheads. Indeed, he accused the questioners of wanting to wreck the economy . A thief accusing his detractors of having sinister motives? That is one ballsy LSoS.

And then, just to show everybody he is committed to his plan of looting the public till and dumping our hard-earned into the offshore accounts of his pals, Kasich announced a plan to divert even more of our money to charter-school cronies of his. Once again, free money thrown over the wall to people who do not have to account for results, or even how they spent our money.

Yep, The Kasich is a liar as well as a thief: a most deserving recipient of this week’s honor.

Mr. B & C

If someone were to tell you that they heard something once someplace, and scribbled a curved line on a napkin, would you risk your family’s safety and security on that quick little offhand doodle? Of course not. But that is exactly what the Voodoo Economics politicians have done to our entire nation.

Supply-Side Economic s (the notion that we should shovel extra money to rich folks in order to create prosperity for all) is a purely theoretical notion, and one with no data or historical basis to support it.  This specious doctrine has crashed our economy and resulted in an unprecedented looting of wealth from the American majority:  the biggest Reverse-Robin Hood scam ever perpetrated.  Somewhere in Hades, the Sheriff of Nottingham is cringing with envy.

The Beltway Banditos have taken this unproven notion and, over the past three decades, behaved as if it were a proven fact. It is not a fact, and never was. It was nothing more than a scribble on a mouth wipe, based upon a few cherry-picked quotes from historical Middle Eastern and European scholars. It had never been tried in isolation and had no long-term track record of success (such success as was attributed in the past has been questioned, to put it mildly). Now that is has been attempted, the idea that cutting taxes for rich folk will lead to overall economic gains has been proven NOT to work.

On a purely personal level, Mr. Blunt and Cranky loves tax cuts. But he is fully aware that from the 40’s through the early 70’s, our nation’s economic and tax policies fueled its most productive expansion ever,  in terms of infrastructure, personal liberty, and overall economic and social prosperity.  Said expansion started to wane as the supply-siders took over, slowed further, and is deader than a doorknob at present. Hell, we are sliding backwards, watching the achievements of the last century crumble around our ears.

This writer heard Mr. Laffer on the news this morning: in response to criticism, he stated that economists who disagreed with him “spent too much time looking at data”. He also said that data was good, but you had to “interpret” it. Put another way, the fool lives in a dream world, an ivory tower, a think tank; somewhere NOT connected with reality.  If the data says your idea is not working, then anyone who has spent any time on Planet Reality will reexamine their idea. But not Mr. Laffer and his mindless Supply-Side Lemming Brigade.

If anybody could provide a real-world example in which this laughable notion had actually worked, maybe we could give it more time. But no one has provided such an example, because Supply Side has never worked for more than a few years. Not once. Not ever. Not in recorded history. It is a pipe dream that has become dogma, and hard though it may be, it is time to stop huffing on the Laffer pipe, expel the Laffing Gas, and return to the common-sense economic policies that have been proven to work throughout history.

Mr. B & C

There has been a wee bit of a kerfuffle in the media on the difference between “outsourcing” and “offshoring”, said kerfuffle obscuring the basic point.  So Mr. Blunt and Cranky will attempt to de-kerfufflify the terminology:

Outsourcing is when you used to do the job, and then gave it someone else’s company to do for you.  Outsourcing can send a job overseas, to another state, or even keep it in the same building.  It does not necessarily involve international job migration. (Mr. B & C works as a consultant, and has had jobs “outsourced” to him for years now, for instance. Almost always in the U.S.)

Offshoring is the actual migration of jobs from your country to another: call center jobs going to Ireland or India, manufacturing jobs going to Mexico or China, etc. This is what people get arsed about, rightly or wrongly. (Note that offshoring is not always a bad thing. Sometimes it can actually preserve American jobs, strange though that may seem.) Offshoring is what happened after NAFTA and other TAs (and various tax policies) were imposed that made it profitable to de-job Americans.

This is the basic point behind the word games: American jobs were taken away, and sent to people in other countries to do.

There is a difference between the two candidates for Prexy in their views of offshoring: Romney favors it, and Obama kinda sorta doesn’t, mostly maybe. We can see their views expressed in their tax policy proposals: Romney and his party promote tax benefits to companies that send jobs to other counties (Romney also showed his support for offshoring via his company’s private-sector activities). Obama and some of his party are beginning to feel that we should not be doing so, and are shifting some of their policies to encourage the return of jobs to the United States.

If we want jobs to be created in America (“inshoring” is the new buzzword: and no, this blogger is not making that up), we should adjust tax policy so as to encourage it. This is largely the role of Congress, which of late is so busy with inter-party squabbling that they can’t even do the few things that they agree on. The President can set a tone and encourage such policy, and even take some limited action via the Executive Branch, of course, so it does matter which schmuck you vote for. Romney and his party will try to send more jobs away, while Obama and his party will try to keep some of them here. How you vote will to some extent determine which way the jobs will flow. Note, however, that where jobs go is mostly dictated by market conditions.

Mr. B & C