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Ear to the Ground

600,000 New Jobs for the Summer

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Posted on Jun 8, 2009
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With U.S. unemployment now at 9.4 percent, President Obama unveiled a plan Monday to provide more than 600,000 new jobs this summer, paid for under the $787 billion economic stimulus package. The initiative will create jobs by dolling up military facilities, improving roads and hiring teachers and some 125,000 teenagers for the summer.

The Los Angeles Times:

President Obama today promised to deliver more than 600,000 new jobs this summer with accelerated spending of some of the $787-billion economic stimulus that Congress approved at his urging earlier this year.

The boost in employment will not offset the job losses of recent months—with more than 1.6 million jobs shaved from the economy since Congress approved the stimulus plan in February. Unemployment last month reached 9.4%, the highest since 1983.

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By Cathy, June 9, 2009 at 7:57 am Link to this comment

As Jon Stewart showed on the Obama banner:  “Change you can believe in.”  Then the fine print:  But we didn’t say we would.

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By jimijazz, June 8, 2009 at 1:58 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

As usual with Obama - read the fine print.

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By ardee, June 8, 2009 at 12:58 pm Link to this comment

As I read this article I thought of the remark about lipstick on a pig. Thats what this job creation program is , temporary solutions when a permanent fix is required. Folks who have lost their careers are not going to be saved by stop gap summer employment or temporary minimum wage jobs.

We are a nation bereft of leadership.

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By matti, June 8, 2009 at 12:35 pm Link to this comment

Ugh.

The bright spot I see is the work on National Parks. But even that may be fairly dim because I’m guessing most of these “parks” are really just tourist-trap “monuments” and that the few which are actual forests and other “park”-like places will be managed just as stupidly as they have been for the last half-century. Only now…with more! Yippee.

The “summer jobs” things just makes me want to smash my head against a brick wall until I can be stupid enough to “think” it makes sense and join my fellow Citizens in brainwashed pseudo-life.

When will people in this country start to understand some of the basic tenets of a well-functioning and socially-decent capitalist system?

125,000 more teenagers on the job this summer will not make the employment situation better, it will make it WORSE!

You know how when you lose your cubicle-slave job and you have to find something quick to pay the bills, and close to your suburban tract-house because your car’s been re-possessed? And you know how when you do it’s always some lame “service economy” lower-caste burger-flippin’, shelf-stocking, or register-jockeying job? And you know how you can never get one that pays you a decent wage, works you regular hours, or allows you to form associations with you fellow workers to achieve these things?

That’s because there are MILLIONS of teen-age kids still living at home who are available to work those jobs and with whom you are in a race towards the bottom.

They think the federal minimum-wage IS a lot of money, they’re mommas still cook their meals and wash their clothes for eff’s sake. They don’t care about funky, part-time hours, they’re still in secondary school, they CAN’T work a 9-5 full time job. They don’t care that they can’t unionize or struggle for a more fair cut of the profits, they only took the job to buy a kickin’ stereo system for their Honda CRX in the hope that its thumpin’ bass will finally convince that girl they like to cut’em some action.

We DO NOT have a “kids slacking off in the summer” employment problem in this country, we have a “adults layed-off who need to feed and house kids” employment problem. Making up 125,000 new jobs for teens in the Department of Labor won’t just “not help” our REAL employment problem, it will make it WORSE.

At the very least, these jobs should be offered to un-employed adults before they are relegated to these children.

If the Administration REALLY wanted to solve the eployment problem, and by that I don’t just mean the current one but the chronic one, then they would outlaw teen-age workers -with some exceptions such as farm work, family need, emanicpated teens etc.- not hire more. If they combined this with a guarantee of a spare but not-destitute retirement at age 55 and a reduction of the “work-week” to 35 hours, they might just fix the problem, not just for now, but for good.

I won’t hold my breath though.

-matti.

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