Comments on Unemployment Figures

I posted these email comments I received from some people smarter than me as an update to an earlier post, but did not want them to be buried so I am repeating here:

We’ve had enormous government spending in the last few years, from farm bills, to stimulus, to bailouts, to new federal regulations and control over major industries of the economy, and this is what it has given us? 3 million lost jobs in about a year? This is the hope of a bigger government and patriotic tax increases and federal control of healthcare, banking, and real estate?

Government grew $400 billion under Bush and we spent more than $1 trillion on bailout/stimulus in his last year but look at the results… while the private sector is slashing 600,000 jobs, Obama is proposing to add 600,000 new bureaucrat jobs in the public sector.

“Americans can’t afford a trillion dollar mistake, however well meaning the intent. And at this point, that’s what many of them think this bill would be.” — Mitch McConnell

I received the following via email:

Labor Report Underscores Need for Jobs Focused Recovery Plan

WASHINGTON, D.C. – House Republican Whip Eric Cantor (R-VA) today issued the following statement after the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the U.S. economy lost 598,000 jobs in January:

“Today’s Labor Department report underscores the case that Republicans have made – that any economic recovery plan must preserve, protect and create jobs. Unfortunately, the bill being considered by the Senate greatly expands taxpayer funded government programs instead of empowering middle class families and small businesses to overcome the difficult challenges they face.

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“The House Republican plan is smart, simple and free of taxpayer funded government waste – which no one can say is true of the Democrats’ plan. To revitalize our economy, we must allow middle class families to spend more of their own money and small business owners to reinvest and create jobs.

“Although yesterday the White House failed to support the tax relief for small businesses and struggling middle-class families included in the Republican plan, I remain hopeful that President Obama is committed to real change in the form of a bipartisan recovery plan that is focused on jobs.”

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Background: When Asked To Name A SINGLE Republican Idea That The President Was Supporting In The Stimulus Package, Press Secretary Robert Gibbs Couldn’t Name One:

MSNBC’S CHUCK TODD: “Robert, you’ve said just now actually in an answer to one of the questions or the President has said if he hears some good ideas from the Republicans, he’s all for it. Has there been a good idea from a Republican that he is now trumpeting into this stimulus packet?” GIBBS: “Well, I think the President talked with Senator Snowe and Senator Collins yesterday.” TODD: “Was there specific like okay, that’s a good idea, let’s do it?” GIBBS: “I have not gotten from him that. I know that he believes that and stated over the course of the negotiations that there are things that he didn’t, while good policy, didn’t believe should be in the bill. And I think he is watching what is And I think he is watching what is going on in the Senate in order to see where the process moves this along.” (White House, Press Briefing, 2/5/09)

Background: House Republican Whip Eric Cantor (R-VA) launched http://republicanwhip.house.gov/jobs, a website outlining the House Republican Economic Recovery Plan. The website details a smart, simple stimulus plan that will create twice the jobs at half the price of the economic package that Democrats forced through the House despite bipartisan opposition.

The House Republican Economic Recovery Plan

Immediate Tax Relief for Working Families: Rather than a refundable credit based on payroll taxes, House Republicans propose reducing the lowest individual tax rates from 15% to 10% and from 10% to 5%. As a result every taxpaying-family in America will see an immediate increase in their income with an average benefit of $500 in tax relief from the drop in the 10% bracket and $1,200 for the drop in the 15% bracket. A married couple filing jointly could save up to $3,200 a year in taxes.

Real Help for America’s Small Businesses: Small businesses (those employing less than 500 individuals) employ about half of all Americans, yet they can be subject to tax rates that siphon away one-third or more of their income. House Republicans propose to allow small business to take a tax deduction equal to 20% of their income. This will immediately free up funds for small businesses to retain and hire new employees.

No Tax Increases to Pay for Spending: The stimulus proposal pending in Congress includes record levels of government spending that will substantially increase the current deficit. House Republicans are concerned that this level of spending will result in new tax increases on American working families. House Republicans are insisting that any stimulus package include a provision precluding any tax increases now or in the future to pay for this new spending. House Republicans believe that any stimulus spending should be paid for by reducing other government spending, not raising taxes.

Assistance for the Unemployed: Incredibly, the Federal Government actually imposes income taxes on an individual receiving unemployment benefits. House Republicans propose to make unemployment benefits tax free so that those individuals between jobs can focus on providing for their families. The plan would also extend unemployment benefits from March to December, 2009.

Stabilizing Home Values: The real-estate market is paralyzed as potential buyers wait on the sidelines waiting for prices to fall even further. This is becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy. In order to encourage responsible buyers to enter the market and stabilize prices, House Republicans propose a home-buyers credit of $7,500 for those buyers who can make a minimum down-payment of 5%.

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