“WHAT ABOUT JOBS??”
On May 30th Robert Weiner wrote:
“The nation’s media are transfixed with obsessive coverage of Hillary Clinton’s role in the talking points on the Benghazi deaths, IRS oversight of Tea Party groups’ tax deductions, and the Justice Department’s demand for AP’s phone records concerning leaks on Yemeni terrorists. In addition, the press properly wants to know about Syria, sex abuse in the military, drones, and Guantanamo.
“Meanwhile, WHAT ABOUT JOBS? That’s the real problem that will define our future success as a country for the rest of this century, and it is a question Rep. John Conyers is asking. The silence has been deafening. At the President’s news conference, which we attended this week and last week, there was not a single question from the media about jobs.
“Despite the Dow reaching all-time highs, the number of jobs available has seen no such luck. ‘Are we still in the midst of a jobless recovery?’ asked MSNBC’s Chuck Todd on ‘Andrea Mitchell Reports.’ According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, unemployment is at 7.5%. Though that is the lowest it has been in the last four years, the U.S. post-World War II norm is about 5% unemployment and has often been at 4% or under. Michigan’s unemployment rate is a staggering 8.5%. Michigan tops the list for African Americans who are unemployed at 18.7%.
“What are the major factors contributing to the slow recovery of jobs in the US? Outsourcing is at the top of the list. Shipping jobs overseas for cheaper labor hinders the opportunity for job growth. Moreover, based on recent tragic events in Bangladesh’s and China’s factories, keeping jobs onshore would save lives, since companies would be regulated under U.S. standards. Unfortunately, major companies would prefer to increase their profit margins rather than make jobs now shipped overseas available for Americans who need them. Yet, U.S. company profits are not at issue – they are at all time records. It’s our jobs – the factor which helps most American families – that are at low numbers …
“Conyers is pressing the issue. At his weekly jobs strategy meeting, where he pulls in national, Michigan and Detroit organizations and leaders, he said that every time he sees the president, he tells him, ‘Jobs should be the number one concern. Full employment is the single most important issue on the agenda. Jobs are the way the economy will improve, and government emphasizing employment is the way for families to come out of poverty and joblessness.’ End the debt by jobs and productivity, not by cutting programs, says Conyers. ‘When jobs go up, crime goes down. Alcohol and drug use also go down,’ he added.
“Once again, the debt ceiling rears its ugly head. Jobs do not seem to be at the top of the agenda of those in Congress – they are focused on the deficit, tax cuts, and program cuts, a spiral which we and Europe have seen in the past and makes everything worse.
“We need JOBS, not austerity.” –