Monday, August 27, 2012
On the Failed Job Creation Front, Obama Has Completely Run Out of Ideas
Unemployment is the millstone around President Obama’s neck in the 2012 election campaign. Attentive voters understand he is offering excuses — a worse-than-expected economy, financial crises requiring longer recoveries, bad luck of tsunamis, droughts, and the Euro — not solutions. Obama cannot deliver solutions because a real jobs program contradicts his core principles, alienates his base, and infuriates his crony contributors. He can only promise more of the failed policies –stimulus and tinkering — of his first three and a half years
Obama’s last foray into job creation was his American Jobs Act (AJA) submitted to Congress on September 12, 2011. Labeled “Stimulus 2” by its critics, Obama’s shopworn list of remedies, promised to “put more people back to work and put more money in the pockets of working Americans….without adding a dime to the deficit.” The AJA’s temporary tax credits to businesses that hire, extension of the payroll tax holiday, and more money for teachers and infrastructure stalled in both Houses and had to be taken up piecemeal. The payroll tax holiday extension passed Congress. Small businesses decided his tax credits for hiring were not worth the trouble.
A deafening silence followed. Obama’s vaunted Jobs Task Force has not met for more than a half year. Obama is out of ideas. He can only offer excuses, criticize those offering new solutions, and divert attention from the worst recovery in history with chatter about the rich not paying their fair share and his opponent’s tax returns.
One year ago, on the eve of the President’s jobs address, I wrote Why Obama Cannot Support a Real Jobs Program. In this piece, I showed what a real jobs program looks like and how it largely would have increased jobs, to use Obama’s AJA message, “without adding a dime to the deficit.” Here is the substance of what I wrote then as advice to the President:
go to forbes.com