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Labor Secretary: Failing to Extend Unemployment Payments Will Increase Unemployment

By Doug Powers  •  December 1, 2011 03:36 PM

**Written by Doug Powers

When you play out some of these theories to their logical conclusions, the only way the US can achieve full employment is if nobody has a job. I don’t quite know how that works, but who am I to argue with armies of Ivy League economists and a US Labor Secretary?

From CNS News:

U.S. Labor Secretary Hilda Solis said Wednesday that failing to extend the length of time that unemployment workers are eligible to receive federal unemployment payments “will mean an increase in the unemployment rate.”

An extension in unemployment benefits that Congress and President Obama enacted a year ago is set to expire at the end of December.
“Extending unemployment benefits kept 3.2 million Americans out of poverty last year alone, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. A year ago President Barack Obama reached a bi-partisan compromise that kept 7 million Americans from losing these very important benefits,” said Solis.

“If the Republicans do not join hands with us again, it will mean fewer dollars flowing to groceries, to gas stations, to retailers, to businesses, and food on the table for millions and millions of families and their children,” she said. “It will mean that small businesses will close their doors because they won’t be able to meet their payroll. It will mean more layoffs. It will mean an increase in the unemployment rate.

On one hand Hilda Solis wants us to believe that unemployment insurance is a good way to keep the unemployment rate from rising, but on the other hand her method used to convince people to support extending and expanding unemployment benefits is “if we don’t do it, people will lose their jobs.” Using her argument — so what if they lose their jobs? Those people would then go on unemployment, and Solis (along with Jay Carney and Nancy Pelosi) have already established that expanded and extended unemployment rolls are good for the economy… right?

Inexacto the accounting dog ran the administration’s numbers on this, and even he was baffled:


We have a family friend who has a brother who was on unemployment for a long time — so long that his benefits ran out. Do you know what happened? In a fit of desperation and after he’d exhausted his borrowing avenues from family members, he went out and got a job. Maybe Hilda Solis would say that example is an outlier, but I consider it to simply be validation of Newton’s First Law of Motion. The science is settled.

Related reading:

Small-Biz Killers: Who Pays for Jobless Benefits?

Well, well, well: Lib columnist discovers unemployed “gaming” jobless benefits

The unemployment benefits debate, Part IV

Paul Krugman, Cynthia Tucker, and the unemployment benefits debate, Pt. III

Sen. Bunning and the unemployment benefits debate revisited

Sunday morning on the Beltway roundtable circuit

**Written by Doug Powers

Twitter @ThePowersThatBe

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