Jobs

SOTU Reviews & Reactions

sotu 2012We've heard many a great speech from President Obama before. Last night's State of the Union was no exception. Here at The Economic Populist we say show me the money. We've heard soaring rhetoric from President Obama too many times, yet behind the words, deeds are either opposite or M.I.A.

Still, Obama gave a lot of lip service to U.S. manufacturing and jobs. To even get U.S. manufacturing on the national policy radar is a feat in and of itself. The actual SOTU transcript is on the White House site with a flurry of videos, social media and round tables to boot. Can't say this administration suffers from a lack of word generation!

That said, we all take President Obama at this point with a strong grain of salt. We've been so disappointed already.

Economic Policy Institute Economist Robert Scott noted China's currency manipulation was sorely absent from SOTU. Yet also noted the administration's hands are often tied by Congress:

Kudos to him for continuing to highlight this important issue, but he failed to mention the main cause of our manufacturing woes in the first place: currency manipulation.

The Obligatory Economic Predictions for 2012

labrea tar pitA new year, a new day and a flurry of economic and financial predictions. Who are we to buck the trend? Yet, buck the trend we shall. While many news articles claim jobs will appear in 2012 and the economy is on the mend, uh, we don't think so. What we have is America stuck in a Labrea tar pit of bad policy and a never ending middle class head shrink.

 

China's Tails I Win Heads You Lose Economic Strategy Plays

The U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission has issued their new, comprehensive annual report on China for 2011. The 414 page report (large pdf), is a comprehensive, with details on trade, economics, currency manipulation, development strategy, military actions and human rights abuses.

Corporations Want Instant Ready Disposable Workers, Not Employees

The Wall Street Journal finally said what most working people know, there is no worker, or skills or talent shortage in America. The real problem is employers, their arcane human resources policies, and the demand for instant ready workers like some sort of ready to eat microwave meal.

disposableworkers, cartoonist unknown

Any Jobs Bill Must Have Buy American and Hire America Mandatory Requirements

arra signPaul Krugman shows the 2009 economic stimulus was not enough.  We've shown as have many others, tax cuts for the rich do not create jobs.   Yet, many criticized the $787 Billion Stimulus bill as spending, loaded with political favors and misdirected funds.  For example, 84% of the green jobs went offshore and build America bonds were yet another gift for Goldman Sachs.

The problem with the original stimulus wasn't that it wasn't big enough.  It was not smart enough.  What we need is true domestic stimulus.  If you're going to spend our money to stimulate our economy, stop shipping our dough to China instead.
buy american
Is this possible?  Can one stop the offshore outsourcing of jobs, especially jobs created with our hard earned taxpayer dollars?  Is there anything that can be done which actually goes to American workers?   Why yes there is.  First and foremost, all stimulus funding should have two mandatory requirements, Buy American and Hire America.  If a government is enacting Keynesian economic stimulus, they must keep that spending within the domestic economy they wish to stimulate.  The last thing America's workers need is stimulating China's economy and generating more jobs for them.

The Blood Bath on Wall Street Is the Blood of Main Street

All hail the credit rating agencies. The Dow is tanking, at the time of this post down over 630 points, probably getting hit with margin calls. Gold is over $1700 an ounce. Oil is down $3 dollars a barrel as investors hunt for a place to hide. Currency exchange rates are bouncing. Panic is clear due to high market volumes and the fear index, otherwise known as the VIX, surged 40% in a day.

 

Tradable Jobs

The Council of Foreign Relations has released a new study with the benign title, The Evolving Structure of the American Economy and the Employment Challenge. Contained within are some horrifying statistics for American workers. From 1990 to 2008, all of the job growth was in non-tradable jobs. In other words, your suspicions are true, any job that could be offshore outsourced....was offshore outsourced. You were traded for a cheaper offshore counterpart.

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