supply and demand

New York Times Infotainer: Taking Away Unemployment Insurance Will Make You Look All the More Harder For Those Jobs That Don’t Exist

Poors with no motivation due to soup kitchenOh look, the Paper of Record has employed another typist to explain about bootstraps and whatnot, and give us the cold hard truth about why we are all losers who do not have jobs. Is it because of structural unemployment, or maybe something to do with robots? Ha! Ha! Ha! Of course not, says New York Time Infotainer Casey B. Mulligan, it is because of all of you Poors who collect unemployment, which somehow prevents jobs from materializing out of thin air and offering themselves to you at low wages that would increase or maintain employer profits. DUH. See, this is why we do not type at you from the New York Times’ “Economix” section: it requires the ability to defend trickle-down economics over and over again in spite of overwhelming evidence that it does not work. But we digress! Now we will discuss this horrible supply-sider who writes about trickle-down fairy dust for that liberal rag, the New York Times.

The prospect of [unemployment or disability] insurance payments gives employers less reason to change the nature of a job to encourage a disabled or elderly employee to remain at work and gives employees less reason to accept changes in working conditions or pay that would make it easier for employers to retain them.

Yes, Poors and Disableds, why won’t you accept changes in working condition or pay that makes it easier for employers to retain you? Like those nice Africans who generously work for $2 per day so the richest lady on earth can earn $600 per second? Don’t you know she WANTS to hire Australians but can’t because they won’t make it profitable enough for her?

If an employee has better, or less bad, options outside the [employer-employee] relationship, then the employer will find the employee more expensive to keep. Disability and other forms of social insurance increase the income employees can receive outside the job and thereby make employees more expensive from an employer’s point of view.

Translation (and this really provides excellent insight into the supply-side mentality): if an an employee can scrape by on benefits rather than work while injured or exploited, then he or she might opt not to work while injured or for less than a living wage. If we just make it impossible for the employee to get by without working while injured, or make things so difficult that a sub-living wage is better than nothing at all, the employee will stay and the employer can continue making a profit. And the profit will trickle down on the rest of us like a golden shower!

Employers sometimes experience reductions in demand from their customers, as auto manufacturers and home builders did early in the recent recession. One way they react is to lay off part of their work forces. But they could also adapt to less demand by work-sharing, reducing prices charged their customers (or increasing those prices less than the general rate of inflation) or reducing wages.

Smart employers recognize that one of these adjustments — layoffs — brings forth help from the government through its safety-net programs (on behalf of employees); the other adjustments do not. If the safety net were less generous, there would be fewer layoffs during a recession, because employers would adjust less with layoffs and more in other ways.

Would these “other ways” provide a living wage? Who cares, this is not important, because of the Free Market and Liberty, duh.

The C.B.O. has looked at the economic effects of unemployment insurance and noted that extending unemployment benefits would “reduce the intensity of some workers’ efforts to search for a new job because the higher benefits would lessen the hardship of being unemployed.” But the C.B.O. concluded that “the net impact on the unemployment rate from some workers’ reduced efforts to find a job would be slight.”… [But]  C.B.O. makes no mention of the same incentives in its analysis of unemployment insurance and consequently is premature in its rejection of the basic economic proposition that paying people for not working will reduce the number of people who work.

Ah yes. Think of how much better off we’d be as a society if we were forced to work while injured or sick. Bootstraps! Stuff that does not kill us making us stronger! Walking uphill, both ways, in snow, because of the good old days! And if our unemployment insurance was taken away, we would look EVEN HARDER for those jobs that are not there or work for $2 per day and jobs would magically materialize!

[New York Times]

About the author

Kris E. Benson writes about politics for Wonkette and is pursuing a doctorate in philosophy. This will come in handy for when they finally open that philosophy factory in the next town over. @Kris_E_Benson

View all articles by Kris E. Benson
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  1. actor212

    Yes, because supply side economics only works with taxes and not with employment. Silly job creators won't create jobs until there are people available to take them!

    1. miss_grundy

      No, they don't want to make Obama look good by employing people, the rat fuckers. And on another note, here's the latest from Yahoo News: 'I was surprised by his address'. Romney says Obama's "extraordinarily" disappointing speech failed to lay out a plan for the economy. Yeah, because butt-head did such a good job laying out his economic plan at his convention. Can't we just send this jerk to whatever planet he is supposed to go to already?

      1. Negropolis

        No, they don't want to make Obama look good by employing people, the rat fuckers.

        It really just comes down to this. It's sounds like a conspiracy theory, but I honestly can't think of any other reason. This bullshit "uncertainty" is really them just holding out to see if they can get a better deal from a President Romney. It's pure politics. It's sick how incredibly politicized employment has become, lately.

        1. MilwaukeeKent

          The bullshit uncertainty is a crock indeed. They're not hiring because the demand isn't there and even then the automation is (plus squeezing productivity to the point of burnout and dropping the "corporate kindness" they'd adopted when the economy was sound (i.e., Clinton) and the job market was tight…but I digress) The Waltons may have as much wealth and assets as the lower 40% combined, but consumer spending is still 70% of the economy. In other words, they're fucking themselves.

      2. bobbert

        There may be some of that, among the larger corporations, but I'm pretty sure that even the most rabidly Republican small-biz owners would be happy to add employees if there was any fucking demand to justify it.

        In fact, we've seen examples of Republican small business owners "building" their businesses and adding employees because of increasing demand — provided by the fucking government.

  2. Toomush_Infer

    Well. There are plenty of sidewalk pencil-selling jobs out there, especially if you wait until Christmas. Pretty ribbons should be selling nicely, too…

      1. Arborista

        My long two-pointed ladder’s sticking through a tree
        Toward heaven still,
        And there’s a barrel that I didn’t fill
        Beside it, and there may be two or three
        Apples I didn’t pick upon some bough.
        But I am done with apple-picking now.

    1. mrpuma2u

      Hey be your own boss and start your own chimney sweep franchise! Surely some bank that got TARP funds will give you a small business loan….

  3. sbj1964

    The beatings will not end until morale,and production go's up! I said your name is Tobey.Kuntakente.Tobey!

  4. SorosBot

    "thereby make employees more expensive from an employer’s point of view."

    We should not give one fuck for the employer's point of view. What about the employees' point of view; you know, the actual human beings who actually matter?

    1. savethispatient

      Conversely, as a business owner, your payroll is a business expense. You only get taxed on net profit, so to lower your tax bill, all you have to do is pay your employees more.

      1. actor212

        Well, there is the employer half of socsec and medicare, which can actually be higher at ~7.5% than many corporations pay in income tax.

        Which sucks big fucking root.

        1. Fukui-sanYesOta

          So if you're self-employed via your own company (you know, that whole American Dream Bootstraps Invisible Hand thing), you end up paying more tax than you would otherwise.

          It's fucking joyous, let me tell you.

          1. bobbert

            Well, you will eventually get SS and Medicare out of it. *choke* *hahaha*

            Actually, you might, but it's gonna take years of fighting these motherfuckers off.

      2. Generation[redacted]

        That's assuming business are subject to a progressive tax, as opposed to a flat rate of 0% proposed by Romney.

        1. sullivanst

          No, it just relies on a basic comprehension of what corporation tax is, which is a tax on profits, not revenue.

          Although, it does still rely on the rate not being 0%. Fuck Mitt with something large and pointy. The cactus from Editrix's favorite pic collection, for example.

          1. miss_grundy

            Perhaps Mitt could be fucked with one of the columns from Stonehenge, with which he enjoys an Anglo-Saxon heritage.

          2. sullivanst

            I'm sure Mittens might imagine he does, but the Construction of Stonehenge started about 3,500 years before the Angles and Saxons started to settle Britain.Still, fuck him with it, sure, why not, just make sure it's not a replica built to a dimension of inches instead of feet.

          3. Chichikovovich

            OK, feet rather than inches, got it. Don't want to make that mistake again.

            But we can still have jolly midgets dancing, right?

    2. Biel_ze_Bubba

      Mitt knows how to read a balance sheet … and he assures me that there are no human beings anywhere on it.

  5. Blueb4sinrise

    The hovel in East Tucson casts it's lone vote for Kris E. Benson for President of the United States of America!!!!!!!!!!!!

  6. BeefHardcake

    The article being written by someone who obviously isn't in the position of being unemployed and having to deal with any of these issues.

    Well, at least not yet.

  7. bumfug

    If the Times lays this prick off to increase its profits (not to mention over quality) I'm sure he can supplement his income by the time-honored and lucrative method of going down to the wharf and sucking sailors' dicks.

    1. chicken_thief

      Why should that asshole get to have all the fun?! Besides, since the repeal of DADT, those Navy cocks are undoubtedly well serviced while the ship is underway – no need to waste precious shore time hanging around docks.

    2. miss_grundy

      It's Fleet Week already in New York??? I thought that festival only happened during the early summertime.

  8. actor212

    The C.B.O. has looked at the economic effects of unemployment insurance and noted that extending unemployment benefits would “reduce the intensity of some workers’ efforts to search for a new job because the higher benefits would lessen the hardship of being unemployed.” But the C.B.O. concluded that “the net impact on the unemployment rate from some workers’ reduced efforts to find a job would be slight.”… [But] C.B.O. makes no mention of the same incentives in its analysis of unemployment insurance and consequently is premature in its rejection of the basic economic proposition that paying people for not working will reduce the number of people who work.

    So the nonpartisan CBO says the impact of unemployment benefits is negligible, but I'll just ignore that because it doesn't fit my narrative….

    1. anniegetyerfun

      I know someone who wrote an article disparaging the idea of extending unemployment benefits because earning $300 per week from the government was definitely going to keep people from looking for jobs to support their families. The mind, it boggled.

    2. sullivanst

      And of course you wouldn't know it because this douchebag doesn't tell you (because it still doesn't fit his narrative), but the CBO actually quantified how negligible that effect is: they estimate it adds no more than one tenth of one percent to the unemployment rate.

  9. NorthStarSpanx

    Casey B. Mulligan argues that jobs haven't materialized because unemployment is such an incentive to not work?

    We all know jobs materialize out of strategic tax cuts, not just once, twice but thrice.

  10. BloviateMe

    I'm just waiting for one of them to finally say what they want to say: bring slavery back.

    Maybe have one of the lesser GOP cockroaches just throw it out there, to guage the collective reaction, and if enough ditto heads et al rally behind it, make it a new platform, and outline the benefits for the slave class. Job Security, 3 hots and a cot, etc.

    1. Geminisunmars

      They've been doing just fine implementing the Neo-slavery platform without having to say it out loud.

    2. HistoriCat

      "Slavery" is such loaded term. These days they focus-group test for more benign sounding euphemisms.

      Can I interest anyone into signing a "heritable work contract"?

    3. GeorgiaBurning

      Indentured servants and slaves need to be fed. That's a real drag on job creation in a down economy. Serfs are the way to go; you can starve them out and nobody minds. It's God's will.

    4. Me_K_Cong

      They did suggest slavery a few years back when they floated the "guest worker program" idea: Import workers bound to the importing employer, pay them less than the native work force, don't let them buy property, and don't let them vote.

  11. Callyson

    I think Casey B. Mulligan should prove the validity of his column by experiencing a bout of unemployment, stat. Let's see him get by without UI…


  12. Generation[redacted]

    If poor people would spend less time drinking, socializing, and recovering from injuries sustained at an unsafe workplace, they'd be better off!

      1. BigSkullF*ckingDog

        I make fun of god a lot, but I take comfort in the existence of hell.
        Also, biel_ze_bubba would like a word with you.

          1. BigSkullF*ckingDog

            No, the devil's greatest trick was that time he shot that guy in the face and then made the guy apologize for his face bein in the way.

  13. Tequila Mockingbird

    You know, if all you Poors smoked, drank, and socialized less, and worked harder at inheriting billions, then you too could be billionaires! It's called MATHS.

    1. Toomush_Infer

      I thought that was ARITHMETIC….maybe, you're just making it easy on us, 'cause it's too hard to spell?….

      1. Goonemeritus

        Don’t forget to grease the blade with goose fat, after long periods of storage those blade tracks can get sticky.

  14. Biel_ze_Bubba

    Why would anybody look for a job when there's a whopping $300-$400 a week to be had on unemployment?

    1. Naked_Bunny

      Well, when that's more than the employers are willing to pay….

      I'm so sick of this idea that having a job is an end unto itself.

      1. sullivanst

        Yeah, but $400 is the upper limit. It's pro-rated on your pre-termination wage before that, I can't remember if it's 1/2 or 2/3, but it's one or the other, assuming that you had enough work history to qualify for that full amount; if you lacked enough qualifying quarters of work, it'd be less still. It's complicated, but the bottom line is, you're probably fucked, but at least they'll supply lube.

        1. SorosBot

          It still beats not being qualified for unemployment because your previous job was as an "independent contractor" so your employer doesn't have to pay benefits.

        2. emmelemm

          In all seriousness, I am marginally familiar with the mechanisms of unemployment compensation (and more so with the mechanisms of workers' compensation benefits). The $400 as an upper bound is probably state-specific, and is a percentage of the state's median wage.

          But even assuming that you had a reasonably high-paying job, and qualified for the max allowable benefit (at, let's say, $400/wk), it's better to take the $400 and spend time looking for comparable work, then take a minimum wage job for 40+ hours a week (and presumably stop, or more likely, not have *time* to continue looking for better work). And then, of course, as has been mentioned, it's pretty hard for an "over-qualified" person to obtain one of these minimum wage jobs.

          tl;dr The system sucks, and unemployment insurance is better than no unemployment insurance.

          1. sullivanst

            Yes indeed. And I won't hold my breathe waiting for turdmuncher Mulligan to acknowledge the benefit to an economy when the breathing room unemployment afford those who get laid off to look around for the job that best matches their skillset instead of being forced by threat of starvation to accept whatever they can get. Inefficient allocation of labor creates or exacerbates structural unemployment, which is an obvious drag on GDP and real income growth.

          2. bikerlaureate

            And then, of course, as has been mentioned, it's pretty hard for an "over-qualified" person to obtain one of these minimum wage jobs.

            Much harder than I ever would've believed.

    2. sullivanst

      By my calculations based on DOL data, throughout July the average number of people claiming benefits was about 2.77 million.

      The BLS, on the other hand, said there were 12.8 million unemployed that month.

      If UI is a leading cause of unemployment, how the hell do you explain the fact that over 3/4 of the unemployed aren't receiving UI? You can't explain that!

      Also too, that $300-$400? On average, that's 36% of what the worker was earning in their last job. Yeah, why would anyone ever want to get triple the money?

          1. savethispatient

            Ha, I hadn't even thought of Twit-chinner! I much prefer that version, I could go around chinning twits, such as Casey B. Mulligan. And DING DING DING, we've come full circle!

          1. savethispatient

            I suggest you use this site to name your proto-human, what is growing in your belly and such. There won't be many Perfidias in Kindergarten!

  15. Hera Sent Me

    These guys hate ANYTHING that gives employees leverage. Unions, minimum wage laws, unemployment insurance, disability payments, etc. They want employees to be docile and defenseless, to be grateful for being exploited, abused and treated like disposable parts.

    The thing that really gets me is all these companies that need an economy healthy enough so that there are people who can afford to buy what they sell, yet see nothing wrong with making their employees live on subsistence wages.

      1. sullivanst

        You just have to crush their spirit enough that they spend their small amount of spare time drowning their sorrows instead of rising up.

    1. HogeyeGrex

      Apparently, these All Knowing Masters of the Universe have never read the tale about that goose what lays gold eggs.

      Pitchforks, motherfuckers. (made of votes, of course)

        1. sullivanst

          But most importantly, how to profit from ruining other people's lives. Did I mention that I've been convinced for years that Business Schools are destroying America?

          1. GeorgiaBurning

            Don't sell them short, they've wrecked Japan and Taiwan as well. China won't hold out long, the Communist Party already keeps their Mercedes' big and their workers a bit hungry. Europe is tough nut to crack, but the German scheme of letting the southern countries indirectly pay off the debt on the reunification; then telling them to suck it up has a familiar smell to it.

    1. sullivanst

      Sadly, being completely wrong about everything in a particularly heartless way is considered a strength in the journalism world.

  16. Tequila Mockingbird

    He's right, though. All those unemployed people could get jobs, if only they'd pass out their resumes along the side of the freeway. In fact, LinkedIn should figure out some way to capitalize on the freeway market. And The Onion agrees, also, too.

      1. ChicagoLory

        Years ago, I identified a bench on Clearwater Beach or a Gazebo in Gainesville, FL, to live out my bag-lady years. Now I may be living them out under a cold Chicago underpass, seeing how the medicare-fraudster/medicaid-rejecting gov in florida decided to close down the last FL TB hospital just as hundreds of homeless started passing this 19th century disease around.
        So how will you be pre-laminating those resumes so they dont get piss soaked?

  17. pdiddycornchips

    I didn't read the entire thing but I'm sure the NYTimes econ writer goes on at great length about the need for strong unions to protect workers from economic exploitation. He must because otherwise, it's a race to the bottom. Every employer in the country would quickly learn that paying rank and file employees less every year would increase their personal take from the enterprise. Eventually, workers would revolt and violence would ensue. It would end with the exploiters dead and their mansions burned and looted.

    1. Toomush_Infer

      Not to worry….I'm sure that finding that fine point between starvation and revolt is the subject of several high-level studies being undertaken as we speak….

  18. Joshua Norton

    Think of how much better off we’d be as a society if we were forced to work while injured or sick.

    Makes perfect sense to me. You can also solve a shark problem by adding more lifeguards.

  19. OzoneTom

    All of those states where the unemployment benefits are running out should be job-creating powerhouses.

    Good jobs too, because if you are going to work you might as well get a good job!

  20. zippy_w_pinhead

    and low food prices cause people to overeat and get fat. Jack up that grocery bill and Americans will be fit and trim in no time!

  21. Mittens Howell, III

    Next step, Hospitals: Shutting down all the oxygen tanks in intensive care will cut costs and make the critically ill lazy patients work harder to breathe on their own.

    1. Negropolis

      That's right. They should build up their lungs to breath the greatest air on earth, instead of mooching off of government oxygen, the lazy bastards.

  22. Antispandex

    Well, what with the comments about two dollar a day workers in Africa, and now this? I may be right about that whole "La Grande Terreur 2013" thing. I mean, if this doesn't get you pissed, you have really thick skin.

  23. HarryButtle

    Casey B Mulligan needs a visit from Tom Joad to discuss "work sharing." He'd better hope Tom doesn't bring his pick handle.

  24. GuanoFaucet

    Also, too…

    If the safety net were less generous, there would be fewer layoffs during a recession, because employers would adjust less with layoffs and more in other ways.

    This just might be the dumbest single sentence ever written in the English language.

    1. actor212

      It actually makes sense, because employers do not pay the unemployment benefit directly, so they'd be less likely to burden the state with unemployed workers out of a sense of patriotism.

      As we've seen, corporations in America are sooooooooooooo patriotic, always keeping their money in American banks and jobs for Americans.

      1. sullivanst

        Well, except it makes no fucking sense at all in any way, because he has the incentives completely in reverse.

        You see, when the unemployment fund is drained, employers have to pay more into it to restore the balance. So, having a generous safety net (the US does not in any way have a generous safety net) actually encourages employers not to throw their workers into it.

    2. IonaTrailer

      I dunno, I'm partial to the sheer cruelty implicit in the one about making people work while they're sick.


      1. sullivanst

        Well, there's the bad news they don't want you to see.

        And then there's the deeply assholish bloviation that they think is good, and do want you to see, no matter how bad in reality it makes them look. That kind also appears to happen on Fridays quite a lot.

  25. Pragmatist2

    I wonder if he knows that we tried that for 150 years and decided it didn't work? Nah. He doesn't know that. He doesn't know shit.

  26. Serolf_Divad

    Smart employers recognize that one of these adjustments — layoffs — brings forth help from the government through its safety-net programs (on behalf of employees); the other adjustments do not. If the safety net were less generous, there would be fewer layoffs during a recession, because employers would adjust less with layoffs and more in other ways.

    Wait… what planet does this guy come from that he thinks most employers could give two shits about what happens to their employees after they've been escorted out the door?

    (Update: Ah, he hails from planet U. Chicago. That explains a lot.)

      1. SorosBot

        Speaking as a U of C alum, the grad students at the econ and business schools were pretty much all horrible douchebags and hated by the rest of us. The rest of the school is awesome however.

  27. CrunchyKnee

    Fucking fucktard is a fuckwit. Yes, when I'm an olds, I really want to work for $2 a day so some fatassed dickwad can retain his profit margin off-shore. It's the 'Merican way, by god.

  28. Mittens Howell, III

    Conservative: Someone who'll steal your boots then tell you to pull yourself up by the bootstraps.

    1. anniegetyerfun

      And then complain about how government regulations are strangling their bootstrap-stealing ventures.

  29. tracyhasfun

    Indentured servitude is the only way to give the GOP and Casey what they want. Bring forth the servants! They will work for foods!

  30. mookwrthwilson

    Wow…However this is what I expected from the U. of Chicago School of Economics, which doubles as their School of Douchebags.

  31. magic_titty

    The easy solution (and the one I've been suggesting for years) is to kill anyone of working age who happens to be jobless.

    We wouldn't even be having this argument.

    1. Jus_Wonderin

      I just wanted to say, I won't be hiding in my car if I loose my job. So, don't come looking for me there, because I won't be hiding there. Okay?

  32. Lionel[redacted]Esq

    I know, instead of having unployment insurance, why don't we just require any company terminating any employee for any reason other than gross negligence or willful misconduct must pay 1 years severance. That should give a great incentive for companies to keep their employees around.

    1. actor212

      Or we could indulge Karl Marx and have the means of production be owned by the workers.

      Cuz, you know, if you had to fire your next door neighbor instead of someone who can't afford to live in your gated community, you'd think goddamned hard before you pulled the trigger, if you ever could

  33. Monsieur_Grumpe

    In other words without a safety net people will be forced to work for any wage and companies can hire 10 people for the price of one! No one will be unemployed ever again! These Republicans are geniuses.

    1. Toomush_Infer

      Well, did you want full employment, or not?…. Mittens has to make this job thing go away somehow, or – ARITHMETIC!!!….

    2. DustBowlBlues

      I'm going to attempt bravely to include a link that I'm too stupid to reduce to a word with the HTML and too lazy to look it up on Wikipedia. {waves arm at wonkette nazi grammarians, all those un/underemployed English majors sitting in their parents' basement. "Hey! Guys and Gals! Look how I made that first sentence read clunkily just to avoid splitting that infinitive."}

      1. Monsieur_Grumpe

        While I was reading that I kept expecting an unhappy ending like the police shot everyone or they were all fired and sent to Texas. Thanks for an uplifting story for a change.

  34. OKthennext

    And Unions make it more difficult for employers to exploit the disincentive to work under conditions that employers desire in order to maximize profits.

    How's that? It's my effort at NYT economix-columnist double-speak. It's supposed to mean: Unions keep employees from getting screwed.

  35. Jus_Wonderin

    I will have to forward this to my buddy who worked for AMR for 29.5 years before being let go. Yeah, he'll get a kick out of these pearls of wisdom.

  36. Arborista

    Don't you think these comfortable people with their comfortable incomes & comfortable, threadbare philosophies should be required to sign contracts stating that they promise never to use publicly-funded infrastructure and services?

    Or at least swear that they will never take advantage of whatever's left of this country's safety net, even if they should someday become less comfortable & need it to survive?

      1. Arborista

        I actually don't have a problem with people who are "comfortably off"- it's just the comfortable with the "screw you, I've got mine" philosophy that I want to wage war against.

  37. RRoccoco

    Clowntime is over. It's time to kill the rich, eat them, and pave our sidewalks with their bones. The best response to trickle down is riot up.

    1. Jus_Wonderin

      Can I run the gold fillings booth? I bet I could make a bundle. Are hip replacements worth anything on the recycle market?

    2. ElPinche

      Let's boil Koch brothers butt cheeks and feed to soup to Rick Santelli . Let's get Dark Ages on these muthafuckaz.

  38. SayItWithWookies

    The prospect of the insurance payments gives employers less reason to change the nature of a job to encourage a disabled or elderly employee to remain at work and gives employees less reason to accept changes in working conditions or pay that would make it easier for employers to retain them.

    Right, dumbass — that's what handicapped and age discrimination laws do. How fucking stupid do you have to be to become an economics professor anyway?

    1. poorgradstudent

      And because employers have today – hell, throughout history – done such a great job of going out of their way without any direct incentives to help the unemployed, also, too.

    2. sullivanst

      I can't for the life of me work out WTF he's trying to argue here.

      Is he attempting to imply that there is a benefit to the employer when a former employee claims disability or unemployment insurance? I don't know the system inside out, but I'm pretty sure that's plainly false. In fact, don't employer contribution rates to the unemployment insurance fund go up when claims drain the fund? Wouldn't that create an incentive to accomodate, rather than one to allow severance?

      Profound ignorance appears to be all they teach at the Chicago School of Economics. I mean, just, what a fucking load of shit.

      1. anniegetyerfun

        I'm having trouble with the argument as well, because it is so poorly phrased (on purpose, I believe). My initial thought was that he was lamenting how employers are forced to provide safe working conditions for employees, and if only they could force them to work in dangerous places for less pay, then they wouldn't have to lay them off all the time? But I can't tell if that's the idea, because I don't know if it IS actually cheaper to lay people off than to force the old and disabled to work in unventilated mine shafts?

  39. Naked_Bunny

    Now that the effective tax rate for corporations has gone negative, the supply-siders have to come up with another angle to explain why the jobs don't materialize. It's like watching Creationists trying to reconcile Genesis with modern cosmology.

  40. barto

    Let's take away Casey's job (there's good reasons for doing this) and put him on unemployment and see if he stays there, you know, just as an experiment. Will he prove his case?

    1. Toomush_Infer

      Yes, a more thorough study is required….I can think of some names to add, for a deeper result….

  41. chicken_thief

    "Employers sometimes experience reductions in demand from their customers,…."

    Does this dipshit not realize that "customers" = "employees of other companies or people receiving benefits while unemployed/injured"? Unless of course, we are talking about luxury yacht builders, makers of auto elevators, and the like.

    1. Fukui-sanYesOta

      However, all the ponies were bundled and used in an arbitrage deal against rare earth mining futures. Unfortunately, Goldman's prospectus accidentally and without criminal intent overstated their experience in pony-bundling (despite the pony bundles being rated AAA by Moody's) and the ponies which didn't die of dysentery got mange.

      Anyone complaining about Mitt Romney's $95M deferred-interest management fees is a whiner and probably a red.

  42. weejee

    Regarding this here structural unemployment, how many Mulligans can I have to repeatedly hit Casey over the head with a stress-strain curve? Trust me, although stress-strain curves are typically a thing of mechanics, the strain of unemployment creates a lot of stress.

  43. Katydid

    People are people too, you fuckweasel.

    Hath not an employee eyes?
    hath not an employee hands, organs,
    dimensions, senses, affections, passions?
    fed with the same food, hurt with the same weapons, subject
    to the same diseases, healed by the same means,
    warmed and cooled by the same winter and summer, as
    an employer is? If you prick us, do we not bleed?
    if you tickle us, do we not laugh? if you poison us, do we not die?

    and, you motherfucking trickle-down asshole, if you wrong us, shall we not revenge?

  44. Jus_Wonderin

    I am not sure. But it seems I am beginning to see a trend. One where workers get dick and corporations get to do whatever the fuck they want. I could be wrong though about what I am seeing.

  45. poorgradstudent

    And of course (speaking from both what I've read and my personal experience from about two years of unemployment) what few menial jobs are out there many people won't get hired for because they'll be instantly categorized as "overqualified" just for having a Masters in anything or by, say, once having worked as a manager even for just a year or two and now trying to apply for a low-end service industry gig. You have the option to lie and cut all that out of your resume, of course, but then you'd just be raising red flags by having "gaps" in your education and experience. It's a damned-if-you-do-damned-if-you-don't scenario for a lot of people, especially laid off middle-class professionals and people coming out into the non-academic workforce from graduate programs. And on top of all that it doesn't help that HR "professionals" are now trained to filter every applicant through bizarre and even contradictory rules that seem engineered to insure that only people with an uninterrupted work record and whose experience and skills already match the job requirements perfectly and precisely (because YWHW, Allah, and Vishnu forbid that an employer take even just two days to train anybody) will have even the slightest chance of being hired.

    …but, no, Americans are just unmotivated and lazy and spoiled, let's go with that.

    1. Toomush_Infer

      In Michigan, (having taught in Minnesota public schools for ten years, with an ME, high commendations and several awards), Mrs Toomush could not be hired (since 2002) under any circumstances, due to a combination of school budget limitations and minimum union wage requirements – there are no new hires not fresh out of undergrad school…

      So there's that….

      1. poorgradstudent

        I'm really sorry for Mrs Toomush.

        Honestly the main reason I went back to academia is that, as poorly as I'm paid, at least I'm guaranteed employment for five years; that I'm good at research and kind of good at teaching undergrads is just an unexpected bonus. The thought of ever going back into the job market, especially with university budgets being gleefully slashed to shreds by teabaggers, makes me sick

    2. IonaTrailer

      I vote we take the HR people out in the parking lot and give them a good ass-whippin'- with votes, of course.

      1. poorgradstudent

        I find that if you really want to get pissed off a good bet is reading one of those "HR Professionals' Advice on Resumes" articles. Some of them cover a bunch of things that I think anyone would agree should dock an applicant some points, but the rest are just really crazy things that prove that HR people are only looking for soulless careerists who have never been laid off or had a medical crisis that took them off the workforce and have already miraculously mastered the job they're applying for.

        1. TopSpeedEliot

          I've also noticed that HR Professionals seem to get promoted most rapidly and are almost never fired…

    3. anniegetyerfun

      There's also the companies that refuse to hire people who have been unemployed. My last CEO would toss the resume of any job applicant who had been out of work for more than 3 months.

      1. Fukui-sanYesOta

        That bullshit makes me sick.

        CA is trying to ban that practice, but it won't stop assholes doing it.

      2. poorgradstudent

        That's really a huge part of the problem, that the mentality among employers in this country is just simply depraved. I'm sure crap like that goes on in any other country, but in the US particularly the mainstream attitude is that employers don't owe the general public anything and they have every right – if not the obligation – to demand that an employer have a "flawless" resume and meet every possible requirement imaginable, no matter how inane or arbitrary.

        1. anniegetyerfun

          Well, this particular CEO was a major dick. He also threw away any resumes with foreign names. This was a software company. You know, because people with Indian and Chinese names are notorious for being really bad software engineers.

  46. PinkoPopulist

    Maybe I'm just so goddamn far to the left that my brain is wired too improperly to comprehend this…but if you're paying someone so little that they can survive on unemployment or disability alone, aren't you violating some sort of minimum wage law or something???

    1. Negropolis

      Well, of course you'd need a President Romney and a Republican Congress to rollback those pesky employment laws and regulation, first.

    2. sullivanst

      Well, no, because while it is legal to pay someone to work for less than the maximum unemployment benefit the law allows, if you do so, their maximum benefit will be less than the maximum possible – in particular, less than their wage at termination.

  47. Naked_Bunny

    So, let's see. If we're going to have jobs, we have to (1) cut corporate taxes to the bone, (2) get rid of the minimum wage, and (3) get rid of unemployment insurance. This will lead to prosperity for all, somehow.

  48. MistaEko

    Yeah. Fuck this guy. Mumbletypeg asked where I've been for the last few months. Well, I was getting laid off. (Look for more of that from the folks who work with municipalities in CA, btw). I'm still alive because my PhD student girlfriend has a stipend and has kept us afloat (HA! IRONY!).

    Here's what my benefits have gone to:

    – Food
    – Resume services (protip – waste of time)
    – Internet and phone (so HR and I can play this charade out).
    – Flights, cars, fuel for interviews (cuz the jobs I'm lookin for don't comp that shit).
    – Moving out of a nice place (with shitty employment prospects)
    – Moving in to a shitty place (with less shitty employment prospects)
    – Shitty place rent and utilities
    – Shitty health insurance (COBRA? who can afford that?)
    – A gym membership (which is the cheapest and most effective form of therapy to prevent you from curling up into a ball of despair)
    – Weekend Beer from VONS (correction, 2nd cheapest)
    – The small consolation that I'm not eating too deeply into the savings that were supposed to support things like houses and kids and other foolhardy dreams to never be spoken of henceforth. IE Preservation of that fucking dignity thing JoeBi was talking about last night.

    Emphasis last point. Take away the pennies that employers (NOT GOVERNMENT!) are still sending my way, and I wouldn't be looking for a goddamn job. I woud have neither the means nor the heart to do much of anything other than play Skyrim all day and hope the rest of the world would crumble faster. I've had plenty of really cruel thoughts about friends and family who have had successes these last few months. Take away the support money, I'll definitely ruin the next wedding or birthday party.

    And I'm one of the lucky ones – with a decent degree, and a family support structure, and money. To not have one of those things right now – I wouldn't wish it on anyone, even Mulligan.

    1. Jus_Wonderin

      I'd say hang in there, but I don't want to give you any ideas. Seriously though, hang in there. This was a great post.

    2. IonaTrailer

      Hey, as a family with two people employed by a CA university and municipality, I hear you. One of us just took a cut and have both had no COLA for years.

    3. fuflans

      hang in there man. i'm so sorry (and i wish i could have told you resume services and employment counselors are bs).

      took me a long time but it did happen eventually.

    4. anniegetyerfun

      Jesus, I am so sorry. And I'm glad PhD students still get stipends. I had assumed that those were totally done away with.

    5. Mittens Howell, III

      Sorry, man. People should read the kind of stuff you're talking about, what's happening for real people, before they start typing up their ideology-porn articles.

      Good luck, and I hope you land on your feet.

    6. Guppy

      The worst for me right now is seeing all the sloppy and unprofessional job postings, and knowing they're that way because they just don't have to care.

      1. sullivanst

        I know the worst for my wife when she was in this shitty job market recently was the realization that many of the job postings were never intended to be filled, they were just fishing for resumes, perhaps to blacklist people for having been unemployed too long, perhaps with the intention of building up a pool of potential applicants if they ever in the future actually wanted to hire someone, or perhaps just to sell off an email list, who knows?

  49. GeorgiaBurning

    Trickle-downers would have been happy in the old Soviet Union, where the solution to inefficient agriculture was to chase more farmers off their land.

  50. Peckerwood_Pete

    Trickle down economics is like the equivalent of letting your best friend hump your wife in hopes it will make her into a nymphomaniac who will want to hum *you* more….

    1. sullivanst

      As long as it's not that lame-ass Menshivism, I'm in. No fun if you don't get to be all shooty about it.

  51. Fukui-sanYesOta

    He wrote this bullshit now because his new book has come out.

    Economist Casey B. Mulligan argues that while many of these changes were intended to help people endure economic events and boost the economy, they had the unintended consequence of deepening-if not causing-the recession. By dulling incentives for people to maintain their own living standards, redistribution created employment losses according to age, skill, and family composition. Mulligan explains how elevated tax rates and binding minimum-wage laws reduced labor usage, consumption, and investment, and how they increased labor productivity.

    So, apparently unemployment insurance caused the recession.

    The Rules prevent me from giving my true opinion of Mr. Mulligan.

    1. RadioX

      There you go again Fukui, hating on the poor insurance companies….I think what he's saying is that the unemployed caused the Great Recession.

    1. Naked_Bunny

      Don't be silly. Slaveowners were at least expected to provide some sort of housing and sustenance for their slaves. That's like stealing from your boss!

  52. Native_of_SL_UT

    This man's logic has inspired me.
    I think that if I keep propositioning that pretty girl down the street that put the restraining order on me, eventually I will succeed in bedding her.

  53. Peckerwood_Pete

    GOP's top 5 suggestions for those without jobs, and living in poverty.

    5) Start your own business

    4) Go back to school

    3) Vote for Mitt Romney

    2) Get another job

    and ….

    1) Pull yourself up… by the bootstraps!!!

      1. Peckerwood_Pete

        That's a good one… neither party really gives great suggestions though… if you want common sense answers to making more money..

        1) donate sperm or plasma

        2) pandhandle/beg

        3) play your guitar on the sidewalk with a tip jar… if you have no musical talent… see the suggestion above.

        4) Play the Lotto

  54. deanbooth

    Mulligan should have titled his article A Modest Proposal for Preventing the Poor People From Being a Burden on Their Country, and for Making Them Beneficial to the Publick

  55. sullivanst

    Hey Casey B Mulligan, you fucking asshole, did you know that you can't get unemployment if you quit your job, as opposed to being terminated? Kinda obliterates your notion that employers will have to pay more to stop people going on UI, doesn't it? Fuck you very much.

    Also, douchebag, that part where you explain how the CBO considered certain incentives before claiming they didn't consider them, that makes you look profoundly fucking stupid.

    Thirdly, you braindead loser, this notion that the economy is harmed by people choosing to remain out of work? That only applies during full employment, when there's a huge pool of other potential workers desperate for a job, there is no damage caused by UI, even if we were to accept your other premises, which I do not because…

    Hey moron, even in times of "full" employment, the economy can benefit by the unemployed being more choosy in their job searches, because the likely result is that when they eventually do start a job, it'll be the one that best uses their abilities. The economy is not well served when a capable engineer is forced by financial desperation to flip burgers at McDonalds.

    Now get out of my site, you piece of shit.

    Grr. I'm feeling peevish today.

    1. Toomush_Infer

      Geez, I thought it was self-published, until I realized it was probably a Koch Brothers vanity press book….

  56. Ruhe

    I've heard of "Freakanomics" but is this supposed to be "Freakingnomics" or "Moronomics" or what? Did the Times let this guy through as some sort of joke? His arguments make no sense, not even from a somewhat cold business management perspective. I've been a few situations where I had to lay people off or cut back their hours and in every instance the determining factor is simply "do we have enough work to keep X number of people busy?" No? Then somebody has to go home. While consideration of how said employees would deal with the situation did go into the development of my ulcers it did not figure into the cold economic equation of the number of work hours needed to the number of man-hours available.

  57. Generation[redacted]

    Look it's just a fact that Ayn Rand didn't write as many thousand page diatribes about individualism after she got herself on the government dole.


    Trickle-down economics in a nutshell: golden showers for us and golden parachutes for the management.

  59. DCBloom

    Employers are already doing that…and have been for years. All the large retail (Walmart) and fast food chains, have a staff of almost all part-timers. If people are part-time, employers don't have to worry about providing benefits.

    Some think you can cobble together 2 or 3 of these and make a living, but they make it impossible by not giving you regular hours so that you can hold more than one job.

    1. bibliotequetress

      Also if you actually earn enough between 2-3 part-time jobs, you loose your access to the supplemental income-restricted benefits like Medicaid, which, of course, you must have because your employer doesn't provide insurance for part-timers.

  60. savethispatient

    So, if Paul Ryan et al were really serious about such things, they should be pushing for a privatization of unemployment insurance. Everybody can then choose their own rate of coverage, there'd be a competitive market to ensure low rates, etc etc..

    Of course, for that to truly work, having employment insurance would have to be compulsory for all citizens, and insurers would have to be forced to cover you even if you had been fired a lot in the past. But forcing people to buy insurance would be SOCIALISM, so that'd never work.

  61. Blueb4sinrise

    Ah, but on the bright side [contra earlier Wells Fargo story also]

    Court rules that L.A. can't destroy homeless people's property

    A panel of the 9th Circuit Court says that under the 4th Amendment, Los Angeles can seize some unattended possessions but must notify the owners.<i/>
    <a href=",0,5152005.story
    ” target=”_blank”>,0,5152005.story

  62. IonaTrailer

    County and city governments are moving more and more to contractors. Meaning no pension or benefits, or unions. It's classic exploitation.

    We need to educate our young'uns about why unions are important.

    1. Geminisunmars

      Why, it is so the Union Bosses can be rich. Of course. I'm sure Casey Mulligan would agree, and he are a perfesser.

  63. fuflans

    for the weekend:

    nate silver's numbers are very very pretty and going in the right direction.

    let us hope they are a harbinger of a delightful fall.

    1. anniegetyerfun

      I'm disappointed so far – we're already a full week into Sextember without a single Republican getting caught soliciting blow jobs in a public bathroom or anything.

    2. sullivanst

      Probably still a little early for the whole convention thing to have worked through Nate's model. The Gallup tracker bumped two points Obama's way today, having been totally flat for several days prior, we'll have to see if that continues, but Nate's model expected a 6-point swing to Obama over the course of this week from the combination of the expected Romney convention bounce wearing off (of course, Romney already got punished by the model for not having a bounce) and Obama's bounce kicking in. If the swing is smaller than that, Obama will be punished in the same way Romney was.

  64. Jus_Wonderin

    Is our present day dystopian, apocalyptic and post-apocalyptic?

    Note to self: Never say this story is crap; this shit can't happen.

  65. bibliotequetress

    When I was a waitress for many years, I never had paid sick days. So, suckers, any of you who ended up with strep throat after dining in various East Coast establishments, too badz. I was just living the Reaganomics dream.

  66. LibertyLover

    "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; It is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." Franklin D. Roosevelt.

  67. Blunderthing

    Slave leader to the trireme slaves at the oars: "Well, I've got some good news and some bad news. The good news is–roast pheasant for lunch! The bad news is–the master wants to go water skiing after lunch."

  68. TribecaMike

    Some in the Times comments section think this guy doesn't go far enough. TGI52AD — Thank god it's 52% approval day.

  69. bibliotequetress

    "Smart employers recognize that one of these adjustments — layoffs — brings forth help from the government through its safety-net programs…. If the safety net were less generous, there would be fewer layoffs during a recession, because employers would adjust less with layoffs and more in other ways."

    REALLY? I cannot find this article with the current crappy computer thing I'm dealing with. What, pray, is the logic offered for this little nugget? The evidence? Did anyone ask Al Dunlap for his take on this? Dennis Koszlowski? Granted, that companies like Walmart could not exist without government largess in the form of foodstamps and Medicaid for their grossly underpaid employees *while that person is still employed* is a given in most schools of economics, but that I find it hard to buy that many large companies wouldn't slash a workforce to three hamsters and two wheels and bugger the unemployed if they could. Some exceptions, natch.

  70. Chi_town_Vinny

    Why doesn't this dick get out of his office, walk down Woodlawn about 3 blocks south and talk to some real people. Maybe then he'd realize that the whole premise is fucking stupid.

  71. ChicagoLory

    Remember when McDonalds held a nationwide job fair for 50,000 positions? And how over 900,000 showed up?

  72. RadioX

    What, did Jim quit? While this post is depressing enough, we need something depressing and quirky. Hey could you throw us a boehner here?

    How about a little tears?

  73. Dashboard Buddha

    If the safety net were less generous, there would be fewer layoffs during a recession, because employers would adjust less with layoffs and more in other ways.

    I'm sure someone else already pointed this out but…

    JESUS FUCKING CHRIST! ARE THESE PEOPLE THAT FUCKING STUPID?!? A person who MAKES less (for any reason) is going to SPEND less. You stupid, vapid, unutterable shitheel hog of an heiress…if fewer people are buying shit or are spending less money on said shit.. YOU ARE GOING TO MAKE LESS MONEY!!

    1. sullivanst

      Isn't it fucking depressing when these guys are so much to the right of actual admirer of Hitler, who admired him right back, Henry Ford?

      I mean, what the flying fuck?

  74. Bluestatelibel

    Yeah, just because you have any kind of insurance means you're just dying to use it. Just the other day, a friend of mine got health insurance and then immediately gave himself cancer.

    And if it was really true that people on UE don't want jobs, then why isn't everyone out there trying to lose their job just so they go on the "luxury" of UE?

  75. DustBowlBlues

    What's amazing is how many people are laid off but don't even get UE. Just take some kind of broadly applied rule, like, "No personal use of computers" and then ignore people cold uploading photos of the grandkids on FB, and shit.

    Or a call center (that might be AOL in OKC) that has a strict "no vulgarities" rule but ignores the minor gaffe they catch.

    All the above is great until they need to offload some employees. Then they start making examples of the employees at the top of the wage scale or those about to retire, and fire them. Yep, they broke the rule. (Like an acquaintance who was dealing with a racist on AOL call center–the acquaintance was black–and hung up on her when she called him a N—-r.) Yep, fired him.

    In labor law, one of the 5 standards for judging a termination is whether the rule violated has been evenly enforced. No making examples of anyone.

    No wonder Repugnants hate unions.

  76. DustBowlBlues

    Sometimes I wonder if, God forbid, Romney wins, whether this country will eventually experience true change–the kind where people get hurt–or whether "1984" was actually a documentary about the future 25 years after the title date.

  77. glamourdammerung

    I wonder sometimes if they are trying to goad the lower and middle classes into a revolution.

  78. unclejeems

    Does this snarklepuss actually live on planet earth and hold down a job that requires that he write this kind of demented pablum? And he's willing to do it? Really, this is the kind of shit that often makes me wonder whether morons of this stripe have actually had any real, personal contact with another living, breathing human being. Sounds like this guy has been locked in Funk and Wagnalls basement for the last thirty years, and just phones this crap in.

        1. sullivanst

          Now now, it's not that the priests are pedophiles, it's that those little boys are such little sluts…. according to Bill Donohue, anyway.

    1. HistoriCat

      Right! Are we even going to get a report on the super secret NC drinky-thing? Or was Rebecca too high to remember anything?

        1. TribecaMike

          Just checked that out on imdb and it sounds pretty good. Thanks. Can't wait to torrent it, convert it, and watch it on my tiny iPod screen.

          1. emmelemm

            No, no. No. It's not a movie you can watch on a iPod screen. The harrowingness of "how the FUCK did they even FILM that (much less someone climbed it)" would be lost.

            It was a pretty good movie, but it is sad. FYI.

            ETA: climbed it… in the 1930s!!!1! When they didn't have none of yer fancy Goretex and yer climbin' equipment and such as.

          2. TribecaMike

            Just kiddin'. Sounds fabulous. Have you seen the 2010 Finnish horror spoof "Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale"? If you like snow, clever comedy, snow, reanimated zombie Santa Claus, snow, cleaver comedy, and more snow, this is the flick for you.

          3. emmelemm

            No, but:

            A) I love Finland. (Long story.)
            B) I love horror movies.
            C) I have seen "Dead Snow".
            D) I'm gonna check that out.

          4. TribecaMike

            My mother is so absent-minded that when we were kids she told us her family was Norwegian, so I spent several decades reading all I could find about my Norwegian roots and Norwegian culture, and when I could afford it planned a long train trek through Norway to soak up the heritage. Wouldn't ya know, a year before I planned to go, her sister told me the family was actually Dutch. I love my wacky mom, but listen a lot more since then to my aunt.

          5. sullivanst

            That sounds almost exactly like some irritating commercial, except they were really Swedish, which is a marginally less incomprehensible mistake, although possibly a more endangering one.

          6. BigSkullF*ckingDog

            Little known fact: Austrians are actually born with retractable goat hooves along with regular feet. Remind me and i will show you at our next drinky thing Oh, and we all have a spare liver.

    1. Fukui-sanYesOta

      My favourite Krauthammer exchange from the other day:

      Wonketeer: He was dropped on his head

      Me: By himself

      Wonketeer: He built that.

    1. Ducksworthy

      O.K. So the implication is that he asked for a blowjob to calm his nerves, thereby proving that the whole DNC was a sordid affair. Right. Thanks WaPo.

    2. Chichikovovich

      "full-throated defense"? "girl's got some spunk?"

      These guys wouldn't make the reserves team on Wonkette.

        1. TribecaMike

          Oh yeah. Did I ever tell ya that Charles Krauthammer is so bow-legged that when he sits around the house he really sits around the house?

  79. Negropolis

    Silly me, I didn't know that Marie Antoinette worked at the Old Gray Lady.

    Shorter Marie Antoinette: "Let them eat cake! What was that? We're running out of cake?! RUN!"

    BTW, why am I not surprised that Casey Mulligan is from the University of Chicago? Ugh.

  80. Bestrides

    Why is it that a mainstream news outlet decides they have to have more conservative commentary they always settle on some hammered guy who just stumbled out of a post-meeting party for College Republicans?

  81. Negropolis

    Jennifer was right; they want to give the cars the elevator and the workers the shaft. And, yes, when I say it, there is most definitely a double entendre.

  82. sullivanst

    Which makes perfect sense. Association with the Chicago School of Economics is strongly correlated with complete fucking ignorance of any of the basic principles of economics.

  83. Designer_Rants

    You know Romney/Ryan is in trouble when the ticket is being eviscerated… by conservatives. And yes, this is a Business Insider article – you can tell by the Thunderdome death match commentary.

    It's The Biggest Crisis In America, And Mitt Romney Doesn't Have Any Plan To Deal With It

  84. TribecaMike

    Very interesting. Joe Weisenthal's previous piece on the Fed "doubling down on existing ideas" is also good, and got my blood boiling. Thanks for the link, which led to the other link. Such info is helpful because like most of my fellow citizens I am economically illiterate.

    Btw, on his show right now Charlie Rose is talking to Howard Fineman and some guy from the NY Times about Obama's first term, and for the most part it's been almost all about 2009, with no mention of ACA or what I think was the president's biggest mistake of his administration, Wall Street hack Timothy Geithner.

  85. Fukui-sanYesOta

    Here's a piece from David Brooks, originally written for the NYT, which shows his disdain for Willard.

    He's often on CNN being a git about Bammaz, but he seems to have nothing but biting contempt for the alternative.

    1. TribecaMike

      That's freaking highlarious! That has to be a satirical site. The sports headline "Pirates suffer in 12-2 loss to Cubs" is a dead give-away.

    2. Arborista

      That is pretty good. I knew Brooks wasn't a huge fan, but am surprised to see him turn loose like this…

    1. Arborista

      Amazing! I just got a new camera- now I need to practice so I can figure out how the damned thing works…

  86. MadBrahms

    The way they describe extracting (screwing) extra value from the worker is like bizzaro Marx, with the bourgeoisie as heroes. Capital with none of the caustic wit and more gleeful celebration of greed.

  87. FrankFuror

    There is a ghost of a point to this otherwise ridiculous narrative, in that there are some industries that use unemployment as a way to put workers in "cold storage", most notably theme parks in the off-season. By giving them an alternative to finding other jobs, the businesses can reabsorb these semi-skilled workers when the season turns around. However this is an edge case that doesn't reflect the rest of the economy, and it doesn't fit with this line of reasoning anyway, as taking away unemployment would increase hiring costs for these companies.

    The part of this that really gets me is the disability part. Employers are going to generate new positions for disabled employees? Really, why? There is literally NO economic reason why it would benefit them to do so. His only logic seems to be that they could get their disabled employees to staff them for peanuts, but that makes virtually no sense. You hire based on demand, not supply. Nobody hires extra people just because they can (nepotism not withstanding). His fantasy here is certainly not borne out by history, at any rate, as the captains of the industrial age didn't generate charitable new positions for their maimed workers.

    1. sullivanst

      The whole piece makes no sense at all, until you realize the author is a professor at the Chicago School of Economics, at which point it's entirely logical that it's all nonsense.

      1. Arborista

        How did I miss that? Link was on front page, but why? Oh, well- never mind- I guess I need to go to bed now.

        1. Fukui-sanYesOta

          I was trying to work out how The Bastard Son was in Afghanistan at the same time as waggling his todger in Las Vegas.

          He's back there now. I reckon it's punishment.

    1. Lot_49

      Much to the Prince's frustration, General Dannatt announced in May last year that it would be too risky, fearing the Prince and his comrades in the Household Cavalry would become top priority targets for insurgents.

      I used to have household cavalry, but converted them to household infantry in 1918, after World War I demonstrated that horse-mounted soldiers were useless in modern warfare.

      Here's to Prince Harry! Leave him alone, you terrorist bastards! He never hurt anybody.* Nor did anybody else in his unit, since they spend all their time polishing his brass, shining his boots, preparing his afternoon tea, and protecting him.
      *Except for all the Brits who pay the taxes to support his and his family's lifelong luxury vacations.

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