Number of unemployed Americans: 13.9 million
Median American salary: $44,389
Cost of a program to hire every unemployed American and pay them for a full year? 617 billion
US defense budget: $664 billion
So, Obama announces that America just isn't prepared for the challenges of the 21st century. We don't have enough Americans trained to respond in the event of floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, fires, terrorist attacks, etc. etc. Too few Americans know CPR and the heimlich maneuver.
And our troops at home and abroad have been pushed to their breaking point.
We need to double the defense budget and re-institute the draft. And the draftees will be the unemployed.
Now, we're not sending 14 million unemployed---many of whom aren't physically capable of military service---overseas.
But the participants will go through a rigorous series of courses. Teaching skills that will help them aid their community in times of trouble and basic skills that will aid them in the work place.
And after the education portion, those capable will participate in the re-building and renovation of America.
We're not coddling anyone. It's going to be intense. But for a solid year, every two weeks, in lieu of an unemployment check, they'll see more than $1500.
Yes, the Republicans will scream about Socialism. That's tough. This program will radically transform crumbling infrastructure, including the infrastructure of the military. It will provide thousands of support staff that could help our troops as they come back from war.
It's a program that will transform America for the better. It will build up the middle class by preparing the unemployed to re-enter it.
It's not free money. But it's real money.