Click amount to donate direct to CounterPunch
  • $25
  • $50
  • $100
  • $500
  • $other
  • use PayPal
DOUBLE YOUR DONATION!
We don’t run corporate ads. We don’t shake our readers down for money every month or every quarter like some other sites out there. We provide our site for free to all, but the bandwidth we pay to do so doesn’t come cheap. A generous donor is matching all donations of $100 or more! So please donate now to double your punch!
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Obama’s Jobs Bill and Other Fictions

Several seemingly well meaning pundits have asked: if Occupy Wall Street wants jobs, why don’t they come out and support President Obama’s jobs bill? Answering only for myself, the better question is: why doesn’t Obama support his own jobs bill? The White House is claiming that it needs sixty votes to pass the jobs bill in the Senate to overcome a threatened filibuster by Republicans. Maybe, but are these the same Republicans who just passed his toxic free-trade agreement with South Korea, Panama and Colombia with bipartisan support from Democrats? Why yes they are.

At this point in history, the evidence is in that these free trade agreements are a neo-liberal hoax to transfer jobs from the U.S. to low wage countries. Anyone who cares to can view the facts for themselves in the government statistics—the decline in U.S. manufacturing jobs has a very high correlation with the advent and implementation of free-trade agreements. Not only have manufacturing jobs been in absolute decline for more than a decade, the Participation Rate, the percentage of the working age population that is employed has been declining with it. As for the purported benefits of so-called free trade, where are they?

So Obama is willing to go to the mat with Republicans to send U.S. jobs elsewhere with a free-trade agreement but he is making only a symbolic effort to pass his weak, pathetic three-and-one-half-years late jobs bill because he needs more votes than George W. Bush ever needed to get his legislation passed?

But what has Obama accomplished with his jobs bill? The panel of pundits on a recent NPR roundtable agreed that he has gotten his poll numbers up on “who cares more about the economy, the president or congressional Republicans” by a full ten points. That is, Obama got what he wanted, an increase in his poll numbers, by creating the appearance of trying to create jobs without creating any jobs. And he did this while destroying jobs in the U.S. with a free trade agreement passed by the same Republicans he claims are holding his jobs bill hostage.

So, support Obama’s jobs bill? Thanks anyway, but Barack Obama and the dysfunctional political system that he represents is the problem. Getting cynical opportunists like him out of public office is the priority, not forever playing the patsy to his misdirections.

Rob Urie is an artist and political economist living in New York.

 

More articles by:

Rob Urie is an artist and political economist. His book Zen Economics is published by CounterPunch Books.

October 18, 2018
Erik Molvar
The Ten Big Lies of Traditional Western Politics
Jeffrey St. Clair
Lockheed and Loaded: How the Maker of Junk Fighters Like the F-22 and F-35 Came to Have Full-Spectrum Dominance Over the Defense Industry
Lawrence Davidson
Israel’s “Psychological Obstacles to Peace”
Brian Platt – Brynn Roth
Black-Eyed Kids and Other Nightmares From the Suburbs
John W. Whitehead
You Want to Make America Great Again? Start by Making America Free Again
Zhivko Illeieff
Why Can’t the Democrats Reach the Millennials?
Steve Kelly
Quiet, Please! The Latest Threat to the Big Wild
Manuel García, Jr.
The Inner Dimensions of Socialist Revolution
Dave Lindorff
US ‘Outrage’ Over Slaying of US Residents Depends on the Nation Responsible
Adam Parsons
A Global People’s Bailout for the Coming Crash
Binoy Kampmark
The Tyranny of Fashion: Shredding Banksy
Dean Baker
How Big is Big? Trump, the NYT and Foreign Aid
Vern Loomis
The Boofing of America
October 17, 2018
Patrick Cockburn
When Saudi Arabia’s Credibility is Damaged, So is America’s
John Steppling
Before the Law
Frank Stricker
Wages Rising? 
James McEnteer
Larry Summers Trips Out
Muhammad Othman
What You Can Do About the Saudi Atrocities in Yemen
Binoy Kampmark
Agents of Chaos: Trump, the Federal Reserve and Andrew Jackson
David N. Smith
George Orwell’s Message in a Bottle
Karen J. Greenberg
Justice Derailed: From Gitmo to Kavanaugh
John Feffer
Why is the Radical Right Still Winning?
Dan Corjescu
Green Tsunami in Bavaria?
Rohullah Naderi
Why Afghan Girls Are Out of School?
George Ochenski
You Have to Give Respect to Get Any, Mr. Trump
Cesar Chelala
Is China Winning the War for Africa?
Mel Gurtov
Getting Away with Murder
W. T. Whitney
Colombian Lawyer Diego Martinez Needs Solidarity Now
Dean Baker
Nothing to Brag About: Scott Walker’s Economic Record in Wisconsin:
October 16, 2018
Gregory Elich
Diplomatic Deadlock: Can U.S.-North Korea Diplomacy Survive Maximum Pressure?
Rob Seimetz
Talking About Death While In Decadence
Kent Paterson
Fifty Years of Mexican October
Robert Fantina
Trump, Iran and Sanctions
Greg Macdougall
Indigenous Suicide in Canada
Kenneth Surin
On Reading the Diaries of Tony Benn, Britain’s Greatest Labour Politician
Andrew Bacevich
Unsolicited Advice for an Undeclared Presidential Candidate: a Letter to Elizabeth Warren
Thomas Knapp
Facebook Meddles in the 2018 Midterm Elections
Muhammad Othman
Khashoggi and Demetracopoulos
Gerry Brown
Lies, Damn Lies & Statistics: How the US Weaponizes Them to Accuse  China of Debt Trap Diplomacy
Christian Ingo Lenz Dunker – Peter Lehman
The Brazilian Presidential Elections and “The Rules of The Game”
Robert Fisk
What a Forgotten Shipwreck in the Irish Sea Can Tell Us About Brexit
Martin Billheimer
Here Cochise Everywhere
David Swanson
Humanitarian Bombs
Dean Baker
The Federal Reserve is Not a Church
October 15, 2018
Rob Urie
Climate Crisis is Upon Us
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail