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Keystone XL, energy policy and the job-creation shuffle

Severin Borenstein, professor of business | February 18, 2015

Renewable energy proponents and advocates of the Keystone pipeline finally agree on something: that the right way to count “job creation” is to focus narrowly on the jobs in the industry they want to boost and ignore the overall impact on employment.  Unfortunately, researchers who actually study employment are not on board. The “green jobs” … Continue reading »

Today’s jobs report and the Supreme Court’s McCutcheon debacle

Robert Reich, professor of public policy | April 4, 2014

What does the Supreme Court’s McCutcheon decision this week have to do with today’s jobs report, showing 192,000 new jobs for March? Connect the dots. More than five years after Wall Street’s near meltdown the number of full-time workers is still 4 million less than it was in December 2007, yet the working-age population of the … Continue reading »

Fear is why workers in red states vote against their economic self-interest

Robert Reich, professor of public policy | January 16, 2014

Last week’s massive spill of the toxic chemical MCHM into West Virginia’s Elk River illustrates another benefit to the business class of high unemployment, economic insecurity, and a safety-net shot through with holes. Not only are employees eager to accept whatever job they can get. They are also also unwilling to demand healthy and safe … Continue reading »

Trimmings for Labor Day

Robert Reich, professor of public policy | August 26, 2013

The good news this Labor Day: Jobs are returning. The bad news this Labor Day: Most of them pay lousy wages and low if non-existent benefits. The trend toward lousy wages began before the Great Recession. According to a new report from the Economic Policy Institute, weak wage growth between 2000 and 2007, combined with … Continue reading »

Going green and growing jobs, the right way

Carol Zabin, research director, Center for Labor Research & Education | March 26, 2013

It’s time for California, long a leader in green energy investment, to take another big step forward on the environment and job creation. When Californians passed Proposition 39 last year, they voted for more carbon reduction, school improvements and jobs – all through a five-year, $2.5 billion program using revenues from newly closed tax loopholes … Continue reading »

Why we should stop obsessing about the federal budget deficit

Robert Reich, professor of public policy | November 19, 2012

I wish President Obama and the Democrats would explain to the nation that the federal budget deficit isn’t the nation’s major economic problem and deficit reduction shouldn’t be our major goal. Our problem is lack of good jobs and sufficient growth, and our goal must be to revive both. Deficit reduction leads us in the … Continue reading »

Outsourcing is not the problem

Robert Reich, professor of public policy | July 20, 2012

President Obama is slamming Mitt Romney for heading companies that were “pioneers in outsourcing U.S. jobs,” while Romney is accusing Obama of being “the real outsourcer-in-chief.” These are the dog days of summer and the silly season of presidential campaigns. But can we get real, please? The American economy has moved way beyond outsourcing abroad … Continue reading »

America’s jobs deficit, and why it’s still more important than the budget deficit

Robert Reich, professor of public policy | February 6, 2012

The most significant aspect of January’s jobs report is political. The fact that America’s labor market continues to improve is good news for the White House. But as a practical matter the improvement is less significant for the American work force. President Obama’s only chance for rebutting Republican claims that he’s responsible for a bad … Continue reading »

The biggest risk to the economy in 2012, and what’s the economy for anyway?

Robert Reich, professor of public policy | January 31, 2012

Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner, speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos a few days ago, said the “critical risks” facing the American economy this year were a worsening of Europe’s chronic sovereign debt crisis and a rise in tensions with Iran that could stoke global oil prices. What about jobs and wages here at … Continue reading »

The most important economic speech of his presidency

Robert Reich, professor of public policy | December 7, 2011

The President’s speech today in Osawatomie, Kansas — where Teddy Roosevelt gave his “New Nationalism” speech in 1910 — is the most important economic speech of his presidency in terms of connecting the dots, laying out the reasons behind our economic and political crises, and asserting a willingness to take on the powerful and the privileged … Continue reading »

Restore the basic bargain

Robert Reich, professor of public policy | November 29, 2011

For most of the last century, the basic bargain at the heart of the American economy was that employers paid their workers enough to buy what American employers were selling. That basic bargain created a virtuous cycle of higher living standards, more jobs, and better wages. Back in 1914, Henry Ford announced he was paying … Continue reading »

No (or at least little) net loss of jobs from regulation

Holly Doremus, professor of law | November 15, 2011

We keep hearing the phrase “job-killing regulations” from the Republican side of the aisle, with environmental regulations generally at the top of their lists. Yet there has never been much evidence for the claim that government regulation is systematically bad for employment or the economy. To the contrary, scholars, this blog, think tanks (notably the … Continue reading »

The seven biggest economic lies

Robert Reich, professor of public policy | October 14, 2011

The President’s Jobs Bill doesn’t have a chance in Congress — and the Occupiers on Wall Street and elsewhere can’t become a national movement for a more equitable society – unless more Americans know the truth about the economy. Here’s a short (2 minute 30 second) effort to rebut the seven biggest whoppers now being … Continue reading »

A good fight to have

Robert Reich, professor of public policy | September 20, 2011

So the really big fight — perhaps the defining battle of 2012 — won’t be over Medicare. It won’t even be over Obama’s jobs program. It will be over whether the rich should pay more taxes. The President has vowed to veto any plan to tame the debt that doesn’t increase taxes on the rich. … Continue reading »

Obama’s jobs plan better be big

Robert Reich, professor of public policy | September 8, 2011

Today,  President Obama unveils his jobs plan. He’ll choose either Plan A or Plan B. Plan A would be big enough to restart the economy (now barely growing) and reduce unemployment (which continues to grow). That means spending another trillion dollars over the next two years – rebuilding the nation’s infrastructure, creating a new WPA … Continue reading »

Jobs outlook not pretty this Labor Day

Sylvia Allegretto, labor economist, Center on Wage and Employment Dynamics | September 2, 2011

Next week President Obama will unveil his jobs plan and today’s employment report won’t make it easier for him as job growth was zilch in August. The post-Labor Day speech will introduce his strategy to promote economic growth and create jobs. The White House has been tight lipped about the details but it is expected … Continue reading »