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If the Federal government spent $200 billion each year (borrowed at nearly 0% interest) for the next five years on (sorely needed) infrastructure projects, that would employ 4 million people at an average salary of $50,000 for the next five years.  This would create even more jobs indirectly.  The unemployment rate would presumably drop to about 5% which would increase tax revenues tremendously.  

Is Obama pushing for this?  If not, is it because it wouldn't pass through the house?

The widespread concern of annual deficits pushing a trillion dollars is legitimate imho.  If that borrowing was going toward improving the economy that's the most important thing isn't it? (We can't go on adding such debt indefinitely.)  

By borrowing a fraction more per year and spending it directly on infrastructure I believe we'd put the economy back close to it's potential output, and then we would be able to fix the national debt problem from a position of strength.

Even if this is politically impossible at the moment, why doesn't Obama explain that this is a good solution to the problem by trying to get the mainstream media, and economic experts, to pressure the House into supporting such a stimulus?

If you have a sense why this isn't happening, please let me know.

It makes no sense.

Thanks

Poll

It is to Obama's political advantage to fight for this

75%15 votes
5%1 votes
20%4 votes

| 20 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  Two words. Neoliberal economics. (4+ / 0-)

    Two more words. Tim Geithner.

    look for my eSci diary series Thursday evening.

    by FishOutofWater on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 03:27:27 PM PST

  •  May want to redo your math on this one (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FG, Argyrios, 207wickedgood

    $200B/yr only creates 4 million jobs at $50K each if you assume that:

    1. Infrastructure work can be done at zero materials cost
    2. Infrastructure work can be done with zero equipment procurement, operating, and maintenance costs
    3. All these jobs can be identified, planned, and contracted out with zero admin costs.
    4. Nobody gets hurt and has to be paid benefits while another worker takes their place and needs to get paid

    You also have the problem these these workers and these jobs are not all just sitting there ready to get going on the project and just needs funding.  It hindered previous stimulus spending projects as well.

    •  Equipment procurement creates jobs (0+ / 0-)

      Someone has to produce the equipment.  Administrative costs are largely labor.  Ditto operation and maintenance.

      The $50,000 per worker would only cover wages.  I'm not sure what the net cost of a worker would be - if the unemployment rate dropped, there would be fewer people on food stamps, Medicaid, etc.

      Either way, the net employment gain would be in the millions.

      No one could make a greater mistake than he who did nothing because he could do only a little. - Edmund Burke

      by AdirondackForeverWild on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 03:51:57 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Multiplier for infrastructure is 2 to 2.5 (0+ / 0-)

      200 billion spent would create from 4 to 5 million jobs.

      FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

      by Roger Fox on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 05:16:51 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  We really don't want to go to a surplus... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Roger Fox, Odysseus

    unless the economic growth appears to be headed into overheating/inflationary territory. Because we have a chronic trade deficit, it is mathematically impossible for there to be growth in private wealth in conjunction with the government running a surplus. The current deficit is not a serious problem. Neither is the size of the debt.

    Just another faggity fag socialist fuckstick homosinner!

    by Ian S on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 04:13:02 PM PST

  •  You have the right idea, but lack (4+ / 0-)

    information and/or experience.

    First, you assume the President Obama has any interest in changing the course of this nation, he doesn't. He has clearly and consistently demonstrated this since before his first inauguration. He is a dyed-in-the-wool corporate conservative, you have only to look at his most prominent and influential staff and cabinet appointments for this to be self-evident.

    Second, this nation needs between $2T - $7T in infrastructure investment right now, today, just to maintain what is already inadequate. We have hundreds of thousands of miles of crumbling roads, thousands of bridges that have already been closed, a 19th century rail system, and an air traffic system designed in the 1950s.

    Third, over the last three decades or so we have seen the so-called financial industry expand from less than 5% of total national profits in 1980 to more than 50% while virtually every other productive economic sector in this nation has been devastated.

    There is no effort at all, zero, none, being put forth to alter or alleviate the collapse of the U.S. by either party in Washington D.C. So, to ask whether there is some political advantage in pursuing an insignificant investment in a failing infrastructure is like asking if it is a good idea to fasten your seatbelt on an airplane that has lost both wings and is plummeting to earth at terminal velocity.

    "Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities." - Voltaire

    by Greyhound on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 04:13:12 PM PST

  •  22 to 28 million people looking (0+ / 0-)

    for full time year round work. Last I looked U6 was 14.7% thats 22 million people.

    If we bring back the tax shelters lost in the 86 Tax Reform Act, that would be 1.5% to 2% of GDP invested in the US, along with 5-6% spent in infrastructure.....

    Would be as much as 8% of GDP, or about a trillion dollars. That would create between 20 million and 25 million jobs.

    SO you have the right idea, but need to match the scale of the solution to the scale of the problem. And dont worry about a surplus, as noted in another comment.

    FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

    by Roger Fox on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 05:26:29 PM PST

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