Unemployment Benefits? Sure! Economic Growth? Forget About It

“We cannot allow one vote to stand in the way of supporting these Americans as they struggle to find work,” White House press secretary Jay Carney said in a statement, in defense of extending unemployment benefits yet again. “Both sides of the aisle have worked together to prevent this kind of hardship in the past, and neglecting to do so now is unacceptable — especially given the high long-term unemployment rate.”

Most people assume that it’s mean (and therefore wrong) for the federal government not to extend federal unemployment benefits; and that it’s likewise nice (and therefore right) to extend them.

Notice that in his statement, Carney acknowledges that high unemployment persists. Does he care to consider why? Is it possible that the policies of the last 5 years, as well as the previous years, have not worked? Should we consider something different?

Incredibly, nobody seems to ask or even consider these questions.

If it’s mean not to extend unemployment benefits, isn’t it equally mean not to lift the many burdens the federal government places on the private sector? With fewer burdens, more companies would hire. There would be more jobs. Employees would find themselves in an employees’ market, rather than an employer’s market, because the supply of jobs would increase relative to the number of people available to fill them. This would drive up salaries, benefits and the number of jobs available.

I don’t understand why it’s considered nice of the federal government to make millions more dependent on the federal dole. But it’s somehow not nice, or even mean, to lift burdens off of business.

For example, the income tax could be massively reduced — or eliminated and phased out, so far as I’m concerned. Ditto for the capital gains tax, and ditto for corporate taxes. Most of the federal regulatory agencies could be cut, and most of them eventually phased out. Of course fraud and contract violations would continue to be against the law, and we’d retain a court system for enforcing those. But the government would stop setting policies for businesses and instead leave it to customers and service/product providers to work it out in the marketplace. And of course Obamacare should be immediately and permanently repealed. And yes, Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security should be gradually privatized and eventually go away (they will eventually go bust anyway, as the numbers tell us.)

Such reforms would have the impact of allowing businesses — you know, the people who provide all the jobs — the opportunity to actually breathe. Yes, such reforms are significant course reversals of what we’ve been doing. But what we’ve been doing has not been working. Under Obama, we’ve done even more of it, and it’s working even less well. Government is not the solution, never has and never will be. It’s almost entirely the problem.

I wish more Americans would consider these alternatives. Instead, we mindlessly go along and keep expecting different results from the same old policies.

Massive, expansive government taxation and regulation did not begin with Obama. But he has accelerated it, and under his watch — by the admission of his own spokesman — nothing has improved. Hence, the supposed need for more unemployment extensions. But why isn’t anyone talking about the problems causing the continued high unemployment in the first place?!

It’s unhealthy and wrong to give people power and then refuse to hold them accountable. That’s what a majority of us have done with Obama. We should keep throwing all the bums out of office — in both parties — until or unless we start to get elected leaders who actually lift the burdens off the private sector instead of continually adding to them.

We have to face facts. All wealth comes from the private sector. All wealth must be created. Government does not create a penny of wealth. There’s no such magic. Even if you’re happy that government transfers private money to some pet program that you like, it still doesn’t mean that government created that money. Someone had to first create it, before government could take it (or borrow it against future productivity.)

If it’s jobs you want, and less unemployment, then you have to stand up for the only system that is capable of delivering it: unhampered capitalism. The sooner people wake up to this fact, the sooner we’ll be on our way to economic and material prosperity on an undreamed of scale.

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