by Paul R. Hollrah –
East coast, west coast, north, south, or in between, it makes no difference. Wherever liberals and Democrats govern, people suffer and everything goes downhill. Think Detroit.
Don’t believe it? Just ask yourself, what is it that California, Illinois, and New York have in common?
Well, for starters, all three states have liberal Democrat governors. And were it not for the fact that the State of New York has a Republican-controlled Senate… and we have no idea how conservative they are… all three states would have legislatures dominated by Democrats.
One wonders how long it will take for low-information voters – those who twice elected Barack Obama and Joe Biden, as well as all the Democrats in the Congress and in the state legislatures – to figure out exactly what it is that’s causing them so much misery.
Will it finally occur to them that it is the economic policies of the Obama administration that has caused the US labor force… those working or actively looking for work… to decline by 663,000 in the month of March alone? The US Bureau of Labor Statistics now reports that US labor force participation is now at 63.3 percent, the lowest since 1979. And will they ever wonder why the states with Republican governors and Republican legislatures… states such as Indiana, Ohio, Oklahoma, Texas, and many more… are prospering because Republicans understand what it takes to create a favorable job-creating business climate?
For example, the unemployment rate in California is officially at 9.6 percent. However, when we include the long term unemployed, those who’ve exhausted their benefits, the discouraged who’ve stopped looking for jobs and have dropped out of the labor force, and those who work part time while they search for full time jobs, the unemployment rate is well over 20 percent, and growing.
In Illinois, the country’s second-worst economic basket case, the unemployment rate stood at 9.5 percent in February 2013, while the national average was 7.7 percent.
On January 12, 2011, Investors Business Journal reported that the State of Illinois faced a budget deficit of $15 billion, “equivalent to more than half the state’s general fund.” According to the report, “(Illinois) officials warned that state government might not be able to pay its employees. It certainly would fall further behind in paying the businesses, charities, and schools that provide services on the state’s behalf.”
In response to that economic tsunami, the Governor of Illinois, Democrat Pat Quinn, and the Illinois legislature, controlled by Democrats (35-24 in the Senate and 64-54 in the House), developed a response that only a bunch of Democrats would see as a viable solution. In the midst of a major national recession they increased personal income taxes by 66% and corporate taxes by 46%, increases that were expected to produce an additional $6.8 billion per year… assuming, of course, that every employer then in Illinois would remain in Illinois.
And in New York, according to the New York Department of Labor, “The final January 2013 private sector job count for New York State was validated and revised upward to 7,418,500, an all-time high. Included in this number are approximately 300,000 jobs added to New York’s economy since the start of Governor Cuomo’s administration, making New York one of only seven states to have regained all jobs lost during the recession. ..”
Sounds good, but is it? While there may be some positive news in the New York figures, liberal Democrat Andrew Cuomo just couldn’t stand to see the employment figures in his state improve. In recent days he has signed into law an increase in the minimum wage from $7.25 per hour to $9.00 per hour.
Dr. Walter J. Wessels of North Carolina State University, a leading expert in labor-management relations, has found that for every 10 percent increase in the minimum wage, the overall number of jobs available decreases by as much as 2 percent. What this means, in simple arithmetic, is that Governor Cuomo has just signed the death warrant for 357,000 jobs… 57,000 more jobs than he says he’s created during his time in office.
The impact on entry-level jobs is even greater. For each 10 percent increase in the minimum wage, Dr. Wessels finds a decrease in minimum wage jobs of from 4 to 5 percent. In New York City, for example, a city with a large percentage of minority residents, the Employment Policies Institute has found that teen unemployment was already at 35.6 percent before Cuomo signed the minimum wage increase into law. With the increase in the minimum wage, the number of jobs available for teens and entry-level workers will decrease by as much as 10.8 percent, while the total number of private sector jobs available in New York will decrease by 4.8 percent.
According to the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics, the national unemployment rate for 16- to 19- year-olds stood at 23.7 percent in June. Governor Cuomo is pushing for a 50 percent teen unemployment rate in his state. And he has presidential ambitions?
But Cuomo has staunch allies in Congress and the White House. For example, from the time he first set foot in the U.S. Senate until the present day, Barack Obama has voted for three major increases in the minimum wage. After gaining control of Congress in 2006, Democrats pushed through a forty percent increase in the federal minimum wage, from $5.15 per hour to $7.25 per hour. And although the effort was strongly opposed by congressional Republicans… on the grounds that such unwarranted increases would have a stifling effect on an already faltering economy… Democrats attached the minimum wage increases to Iraq War funding bills and President Bush was forced to either sign them or shortchange our troops in the field.
While Obama is fond of pointing to what he claims are 2.5-3.6 million jobs saved by his $800 billion stimulus boondoggle, he clearly does not wish to take credit for the number of jobs that were lost or never created due to uneconomic increases in the minimum wage… entry level jobs that allow teens and high school graduates to enter the workforce or to save money for college. Simple arithmetic tells us that a 40 percent increase in the minimum wage would result in the loss of as many as 12.3 million jobs in a civilian workforce of some 154.5 million over a three year period.
Even states such as Michigan and Wisconsin, having survived the poison pill policies of Democrat governors, Democratic legislatures, and organized labor, have finally elected Republican governors and Republican legislatures. Both states are now experiencing a dramatic turnaround.
Twenty months before the 2014 General Election, Barack Obama spends half his time lobbying against 2nd Amendment rights and half his time lobbying low information voters to return the House of Representatives to Democrat control. We must do everything in our power to bring about the exact opposite. It is imperative that, in 2014, Republicans not only extend their House majority, but take back control of the Senate, as well. It’s exactly what Obama deserves.
In a recent public statement, Obama has endorsed the idea that American children need to be taught more of the economic facts of life, beginning at an early age. It’s all pure propaganda, designed for consumption by low-information voters. The fact is, an educated public that understands the economic essentials of everyday life is the last thing that Barack Obama and other Democrats want. They know that a voter who understands basic economics is almost certain to be a Republican voter.
It proves once again that nearly every problem we have as a nation can be traced back to the poor quality of public education. There may be some things that Obama and congressional Democrats would like to fix. The ability of the American people to equate economic outcomes to the impact of higher taxes, government spending, and government regulation is not one of them. | April 5, 2013