Tag Archives: unemployment

CEI Podcast for January 2, 2014: Rethinking Unemployment Insurance

vnemployment line
Have a listen here.

With unemployment still painfully high more than five years after the financial crisis, Senior Fellow in Labor Policy Aloysius Hogan thinks that re-extending unemployment insurance would only make the problem worse.

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CEI Podcast for June 15, 2011: Do ATMs Kill Jobs?

 

 

Have a listen here.

In a recent NBC interview, President Obama blamed ATMs for taking away bank tellers’ jobs, and computerized airline check-in kiosks for eliminating aviation jobs. Communications Coordinator Lee Doren points out that innovation doesn’t affect the number of jobs so much as the types of jobs. Accomplishing more while using less labor is actually the key to prosperity. People looking for an explanation for today’s high unemployment need to look elsewhere.

CEI Podcast – October 7, 2010: Trade, Jobs, and Korea

Have a listen here.

CEI Adjunct Fellow Fran Smith talks about the EU-Korea free trade agreement that takes effect next year, and why the US-Korea FTA stalled, to the economy’s detriment. Fran also talks about NAFTA’s impact on jobs, and why imports are a good thing.

Expensive Jobs

Through June, the government spent about $620 billion of stimulus money. The Obama administration claims that the spending has saved or created 2.3 to 2.8 million jobs.

For the sake of argument, let’s assume those job creation numbers are true. In fact, let’s pick the rosiest number — 2.8 million jobs.

At a price of $620 billion, that comes out to $221,428.57 per job. Startlingly inefficient.

Now consider that that $620 billion had to come from somewhere else. Some of that money came from taxes. That leaves less money left over for consumers and businesses to spend. Some of the stimulus money was borrowed. That leaves less capital for private companies borrow.

The private sector tends to spend less than the government to create a job. Since stimulus spending is spending more money to create fewer jobs than the private sector, it is actually causing net harm to the job market.

In place of the spending stimulus, I humbly offer a deregulatory stimulus. CEI VP Wayne Crews and I offer some specific proposals here.

Unintended Consequences of Unemployment Benefits

This letter of mine ran in today’s New York Times in response to Paul Krugman’s July 4 column.

To the Editor:

Paul Krugman is at a loss to explain why some people oppose extending unemployment benefits. One reason people hold such an opinion is that when government subsidizes something, there tends to be more of it.

The more government subsidizes unemployment, the more people will indulge in it for longer periods of time.

Ryan Young
Washington, July 6, 2010

The writer is a journalism fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute.

Will the Jobs Bill Create Any Jobs?

Over at the American Spectator, I explain why it won’t, but a deregulatory stimulus would. Main points:

-Anything that Washington giveth, it must first taketh away from somewhere else. The jobs bill is a zero-sum game.

-When government borrows more, less investment capital is left over for the productive sector.

-Taxes will have to be raised later to pay for today’s increased borrowing.

-Deregulation is a better approach. The biggest obstacles to job creation and economic growth are all in Washington.

Senate Passes $18,000,000,000 Spending Bill: Will it Create Jobs?

The Senate just passed an $18 billion spending bill. Since the House already passed it, the legislation is now headed to President Obama’s desk to await his signature and become law.

The hope is that the spending will create jobs. If you’re reading this blog, then you probably know enough about economics to know that isn’t what will actually happen. Remember: anything that Washington giveth, it must first taketh away from somewhere else. It’s a zero-sum game. All those new jobs that politicians will be touting for the cameras will have come at the expense of other jobs elsewhere. On net, they’re not creating a thing.

Take the payroll tax break for small businesses that’s in the bill. Yes, those small businesses benefit. Maybe the money they save will even be used to hire more workers. That’s easy enough to see. But that money had to come from somewhere. That is harder to see. Too hard for the Senate to see, at the very least.

The reason is this: the government is foregoing some payroll tax revenue. But since it isn’t cutting spending to match, it has to borrow more. And there’s only so much investment capital to go around. Because Washington is borrowing more, less is left over for private investment opportunities. At the very least, companies will have to offer investors higher interest rates to lure them away from government bonds.

That makes getting loans more expensive. And when something gets more expensive, there tends to be less of it. Because of today’s bill, about $18 billion less capital will be available for the private sector to create jobs.

The legislation the Senate passed today is no jobs bill, at least on net. It is a spending bill. It doesn’t create jobs, it only redirects them.