Leftists believe one should never let a crisis go to waste. Socialist Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont certainly isn’t going to let the Ferguson riots pass by without using them as theater to push a big “jobs” bill – you know, the kind of “stimulus” spending that has been conspicuously failing to stimulate healthy job growth for years. The Hill has details of Sanders’ spend-a-palooza:
“If we are going to address the issue of crime in low-income areas and in African-American communities, it might be a good idea that instead of putting military style equipment into police departments in those areas, we start investing in jobs for the young people there who desperately need them,” Sanders said.
His comments came after an unarmed black teen, Michael Brown, was shot and killed by a police officer in Ferguson, Mo. Sanders said, in the St. Louis area, almost half of young black men are unemployed.
“Not only do we have to take a stand to end the violence that is being committed against young Americans, we also must recognize that there is an economic crisis facing our nation’s youth, particularly young African-Americans,” Sanders wrote in a letter to colleagues asking for co-sponsors of his new bill, the Employ Young Americans Now Act.
Sanders’s bill would authorize the Department of Labor to immediately give $4 billion to states and localities to employ 1 million young Americans between the ages of 16 and 24. The youth unemployment rate is currently more than 20 percent and nearly 35 percent for young African Americans.
The bill would also award $1.5 billion in competitive grants to provide work-based training to low- and moderate-income youth and disadvantaged young adults.
“If we are going to reduce youth violence and instill hope and a bright future for the young people in this country, we have got to provide them with the jobs and the skills they need to move up the economic ladder,” Sanders wrote.
We have the most expensive public education system ever conceived – run wholly and entirely by the Democrat Party and its most powerful special interest group, the teachers’ unions, for decades – but we still need billions of dollars more in training to prepare young people for the workforce. That would be the same shriveled workforce Democrats can’t wait to flood with millions of amnestied illegal aliens. But don’t you dare suggest the money we’ve been pouring into the ed-union black hole for all these years might not have been well -spent.
Jobs are not a gift the government “provides” by spending billions of forcibly confiscated dollars. Jobs flow naturally from the pursuit of opportunity – a pursuit the Left does everything in its power to make more difficult. Six years of Obama produced the hideous workforce faced by young people, particularly young minority workers. The end of Obamanomics is what we desperately need, not a gigantic new program that treats jobs as a welfare benefit, with the customary 90 cents on the dollar skimmed off for Big Government overhead.
The story I mentioned earlier about the booming coyote smuggling industry is outrageous in its details, but perfectly logical in principle: an opportunity to provide a service was created, and a thriving competitive market arose to meet a real need. The need in question happens to be illegal penetration of the U.S. border, but it’s still an example of how removing the regulatory barriers to an opportunity seen as desirable by consumers and providers stimulates both the primary business and peripheral industries. Too bad no one on the Left is likely to apply those lessons to something more productive and agreeable to U.S. law.