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View Diary: Today’s Jobs Report and the Need for Jobs “Made in the USA” (22 comments)

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  •  Former Administration Economist Jared Bernstein (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    gchaucer2, MikeTheLiberal

    suggested in a post earlier today that a good and doable way to boost the economy would be a "full-year, full-bore payroll tax holiday, both on the employer and the employee side" like the one proposed by the Rivlin-Domenici commission.  As Bernstein explains:

    Why this idea?  It’s of significant magnitude, the first name of the commission that proposed it is “bipartisan,” it cuts labor costs to employers and boosts paychecks of workers, who will spend the money, generating useful second round effects.

    Now clearly a big increase in infrastructure spending and a WPA-like program, as Robert Reich has suggested, as well as more aid to state governments drowning in red ink, would be better, but that doesn't appear to have any chance of passing Congress.

    But can a payroll tax holiday along the lines of what Bernstein mentioned realistically pass Congress?  

    "I used to try to get things done by saying `please'. That didn't work and now I'm a dynamiter. I dynamite `em out of my path." - Huey Long

    by puakev on Fri Jun 03, 2011 at 12:57:17 PM PDT

    •  payroll tax (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      puakev

      Its hard to predict how this current Congress will react to any legislation, we've definitely seen our fair share of unexpected bills and votes this session.  However, a payroll tax holiday is something that would seem to have appeal to many Members on both sides of the aisle, and has been shown by economists, including Mr. Bernstein, as an effective policy tool.  At this point, it would be another tool this Congress would be wise to consider.

      •  Thanks for the response (0+ / 0-)

        I wish more of your colleagues were as sensible as you are.

        "I used to try to get things done by saying `please'. That didn't work and now I'm a dynamiter. I dynamite `em out of my path." - Huey Long

        by puakev on Fri Jun 03, 2011 at 01:16:16 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  cutting taxes is not the answer (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Brooke In Seattle

        U.S. manufacturers are paying low taxes now.  The U.S. needs to invest in wind, solar and other renewable energy and quit sending $'s overseas.  We need to invest in infrastructure and put people to work.  I can't understand why we continue to sell war and destruction while our people struggle, suffer, and die.  Family Values , my ass.  We won't even help our own who are in need.   We have to stop letting the corporate powers profit at the expense of the majority of our people.  

        •  I agree that investment is the best way (0+ / 0-)

          to get the economy going again, but frankly that has no chance at all of passing Congress at this point.  I believe the President and Democrats should keep making the case publicly for such investments.  But that's mostly to present an alternative vision to the Republicans' savage budget-cutting in next year's elections.  In other words,

          As for what this Congress might realistically do to help the economy in the next year and a half, I think a "full-year, full-bore" payroll tax holiday along the lines Bernstein suggested may just fit the bill.

          "I used to try to get things done by saying `please'. That didn't work and now I'm a dynamiter. I dynamite `em out of my path." - Huey Long

          by puakev on Fri Jun 03, 2011 at 01:57:52 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  How does cutting the payroll tax (0+ / 0-)

      create jobs for the long-term unemployed?

      We get no first- or second-round effects from this.

      I haven't had a job in years. I may not ever work again because I am over 50 and have two college degrees, so employers don't want to pay what I'm worth or pay for my health insurance.

      We need a JOBS program that takes all comers -- giving preference to those unemployed a year or longer -- not another tax cutting program that may put some money in YOUR pocket, but does nothing to actually create jobs for those who desperately need them.

      "The difference between the right word and the almost-right word is like the difference between lightning and the lightning bug." -- Mark Twain

      by Brooke In Seattle on Fri Jun 03, 2011 at 02:45:48 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I happen to agree with you (0+ / 0-)

        but such a jobs program is not going to pass with this Congress.  Thus I'm looking at a one-year payroll tax holiday, which is something that not only Bernstein but other progressive economists like Robert Reich have supported, and most importantly is something that may have a chance of passing.

        I'm all for making the case for a jobs program along the lines you discuss, but that will never come to pass unless Democrats take back the House and hold onto the Senate.  In fact making the case for a jobs program is one of the best things Democrats could do to make Democratic control of Congress a reality once more.

        Of course, Democratic control alone won't guarantee the passage of an ambitious jobs program, especially if regaining the majority involves a new influx of Blue Dog Democrats.  Thus it is incumbent on us to elect better Democrats and to build popular support for a big jobs program.

        It would be nice if our political leaders made a strong public case as well, but frankly they go whereever the political passions of the moment appear to be going.  From 2009-2010, those passions were coming from the Tea Partiers railing on about cutting spending, and not surprisingly our political debate this year has been about cutting spending.  Now, if somehow public support for a jobs program were to become loud and overwhelming enough, that would make our politicians more likely to pursue such action.  

        "I used to try to get things done by saying `please'. That didn't work and now I'm a dynamiter. I dynamite `em out of my path." - Huey Long

        by puakev on Fri Jun 03, 2011 at 03:03:54 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

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