Put America Back to Work

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The latest attempt of our government to offer tax incentives to employers who expand their workforce is being met with the same yawns that previous unsuccessful new hire tax breaks have received. Is it time to try something new? Here are a few suggestions.

  • Start paying interns. Who decided we could exploit our unemployed college graduates by making them work for free in exchange for "a line on the resume?" C'mon folks ‒ this is worse than hiring third-world workers for pennies on the dollar.
  • Support local businesses. The next time you start to buy something on the Internet, forget about the convenience of ordering without leaving your easy chair; go out and see if it can be found at a local retailer instead.
  • Implement a national sales tax to replace all or at least part of the income tax. Exempt the necessities so that those who can only afford food and clothing can still get by. It's not that I advocate oppressive taxes for the impoverished, I just advocate a system where everyone has a stake. Currently, half of our citizens pay no income tax. Their only stake in the economy is to vote/hope for expanded government benefits which can cripple the system and alienate the welfare recipients from the taxpayers. We don't have to cut the benefits, just make everybody contribute a bit to the greater good.

As long as I'm ranting about the current tax and benefits structure, let's also talk about payback. Benefits for those who are incapable of functioning make sense. Everyone else needs to think of government benefits not as a gift, but as an exchange for community service, military service, government jobs, and helping less capable friends and neighbors. C'mon benefits recipients ‒ let's get busy with paying it forward. When benefits recipients start doing the jobs that state and federal government workers do, we can cut the government workforce and the related cost. The poor still get their benefits, but the society as a whole gets a benefit too.

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I wholeheartedly agree with your comments, especially the part about benefit recipients paying it forward....with one exception.  If we make benefits recipients do the work that it currently being done by government workers, then pretty soon we have displaced government workers becoming benefits recipients. 

Here's a slight change to your proposal:  have benefits recipients do work that is not currently being done.  Maybe community/charitable service.  Or, linking this to your other article about Obama's proposals to create new jobs:  place benefit recipients into a "day labor" pool.  Small and/or struggling businesses could access their services on a day-to-day basis for low or no cost,  The good ones might eventually get hired by those very small businesses the government seeks to help. 
Talk about a trifecta! 
 win (new jobs created)
 win (government assistance to small biz at no additional cost to either)
 win (people leaving assistance programs or at least being productive while in them)
 

So you are saying that government workers can be replaced by "everyone else".  So my degrees and experience mean nothing?  I enjoy serving the citizens of my City and I think they get a pretty darn good worker in return.  These people have issues and is why they are not in the workforce, do really want that person who does not want to work processing your tax return or whatever other government job out there?  A change in policy is what is needed, not another program that hands out my job to the next problem person.

Sometimes I am that 47% that does not pay any USA income tax. That does not mean I am a freeloader or on welfare. I am not on welfare. I did not pay 2011 income tax because my income was too low for tax. I lost money on Shearson Lehman investments. But my capital loss write off is limited to $1,500 even though about $8,000 left my wallet. So who is freeloading off of who? The CEO who makes 113 to 400 times the average wage even though he is not 113-400 times smarter than the average worker? The SL executives who paid themselves nice bonuses while Ma and I lose thousands? The corporate raiders of little peoples' pension plans? Those CEOS and executives damaged and drained the economy more than these so-called yahoos getting welfare checks, in my opinion. If these executives and their minions continue to drain the economy than more middle class people might end up on welfare. And those people who broke immigration laws and underpaid the illegal immigrants should get arrested for slavery. I thought slavery was illegal.