|NYT Headline: World to end tomorrow, women and minorities hardest hit.|
Dr. J. would like to expound upon ‘Puter’s ‘Putertastic ‘Polemic posted earlier today.
|Hey, even if it isn’t as good as your last job, it’s good enough! Get back to work.|
Dr. J. was catching a little Fox and Friends before heading off to work in single digit ‘Puter-weather when he saw economics professor Dr. Peter Morici interviewed about the extension of unemployment benefits.
Unduly long unemployment benefits in an economy the President says is picking up steam encourages many unemployed to postpone serious employment searches. From Wall Street to Main Street, white collar professionals have delayed accepting lower pay and changing occupations by running down savings and collecting maximum unemployment benefits of about $300 a week.
Most could easily earn multiples of those amounts even by accepting positions at somewhat lower status than their old jobs. It takes a rather twisted view of social justice to raise taxes on the working poor to pay professionals not to work but that is exactly what federally-financed extended unemployment benefits do.
Now while the rub between the House and the White House appears to be over how it is paid for (cutting somewhere vs. putting it on the credit card), Peter made the point that federal unemployment insurance (via the payroll tax) comes out of one’s first $12,000 of earnings, and thus it is a regressive tax where the least among the working-us, are paying a disproportionately high amount of their income towards federal unemployment insurance. Similarly, many of the folks who require
99 weeks two years of unemployment checks from Uncle Sam are probably folks who are not taking jobs ‘beneath their station’ while being willing to accept what amounts to minimum wage for not working. By extension, extending unemployment benefits to ‘more than two years‘ from ‘two years’ continues to hurt the ‘working poor’ at the behest of the protractedly unemployed, creating a non-working class among us. We aren’t talking about not giving two years of unemployment benefits to the newly unemployed, which is a post for another day, but extending the benefits for the now chronically unemployed.
The carrot and the stick are clearly being used with the wrong mules.