Dream Jobs

He’s talking jobs now (finally) instead of health care reform gibberish. Makes for good reading in the rags popularly referred to as newspapers, we’ll admit, but exactly what is president Obama proposing to do to create those jobs? Here’s his latest hallucination.

The Journal of Commerce reported that some $ 8 billion of stimulus funding will be directed to the upgrading of our rail systems, and more than half of that will go onto freight corridors to build up inter-city passenger service.

“It took a year and a stubbornly high unemployment rate,” the story goes, “before the Obama administration recast its long-awaited $ 8 billion in rail system grants as part of a jobs strategy.”

A project in Florida will get $ 1.25 billion. One in California will get $ 2.25 billion. Then another $ 1.13 billion buys a “high-speed corridor” extending from Chicago to St. Louis.

These projects won’t amount to a hill of beans, though. Jobs? A few thousand maybe, but nothing permanent. Construction jobs last only until the “infrastructure” project is finished, then it’s back to the unemployment line for the laborers.

The president and his advisors are either hallucinating or they’re deliberately misleading us. This nation doesn’t need a few thousand temporary jobs here and there. We need millions of permanent jobs that have a multiplier effect.

That $ 8 billion may or may not build those railroads mentioned above, but in any event no passengers or goods will ever be transported. It’s a classic example of putting the cart before the horse. We’re unemployed, broke, and have no means of producing anything to transport.

For much less than $ 8 billion, the president could simply arrange to revitalize about a hundred of our shipyards so that U.S. workers could build thousands of much needed container ships – exactly what FDR did to end the Great Depression of the 1930s. We’ve spelled it all out in our earlier commentaries, but in a nutshell, by building our patented container ships –

– – we’d be providing permanent employment for between 40 and 50 million of our fellow Americans;
– – we’d be providing weekly paychecks to those newly employed workers;
– – we’d be demanding products from overseas manufacturers again;
– – we’d even be creating employment opportunities in those overseas manufacturing facilities;
– – we’d be producing U.S.-built container ships to transport those goods to our shores;
– – we’d be providing U.S. seamen to operate those U.S.-built container ships;
– – we’d be dealing with U.S. owners of those U.S.-built container ships;

– and we’d be ending this nation’s headlong rush into another Great Depression.