On Labor Day, Paul Krugman reminds us that after 9 months of government layoffs & zero jobs bills from the GOP-controlled House, the Great Recession’s unemployment picture remains as bleak as ever:
Although you’d never know it listening to the ranters, the past year has actually been a pretty good test of the theory that slashing government spending actually creates jobs. The deficit obsession has blocked a much-needed second round of federal stimulus, and with stimulus spending, such as it was, fading out, we’re experiencing de facto fiscal austerity. State and local governments, in particular, faced with the loss of federal aid, have been sharply cutting many programs and have been laying off a lot of workers, mostly schoolteachers.
And somehow the private sector hasn’t responded to these layoffs by rejoicing at the sight of a shrinking government and embarking on a hiring spree.
Krugman says on job creation, Republicans “will oppose anything Mr. Obama proposes, even if it would clearly help the economy – or maybe I should say, especially if it would help the economy, since high unemployment helps them politically.” But hey, as long as Republicans can admit publicly their goal is to destroy government rather than create jobs & the media won’t call them on it, what’s their motivation to act anything but cynically? And it gives GOP politicians like Gov. Bob McDonnell lots of chances to try for photo ops at food banks!