Today We Get Obama’s Jobs Summit Photo-Op

Yes, that’s right, today is the day, the ONE day, that Obama is going to have a summit to discuss why the Stimulus has failed miserably in lowering the unemployment rate. I wonder how that will go?

Bail out the states. Hire an army of caulkers and street sweepers. Pay companies to expand their work force. Build new dams and bridges. Boost exports. Slash payroll taxes.

President Barack Obama is in a quandary over how to combat the country’s crippling joblessness, but he won’t lack for new ideas at Thursday’s White House jobs summit. The forum’s 130 guests plan to shower him and his staff with proposals — a few of which the administration may actually like.

Of course he is in a quandary. He has no experience actually running a business. This is not in any way like community organizing. And being president doesn’t lend itself to on the job training. (Thanks for that money quote, Joe!)

But for all the theater of the event, Mr. Obama has limited leverage to try to spur job growth, with interest rates already at rock bottom and federal deficits soaring. His aides say Mr. Obama plans to eschew measures that would dramatically ratchet up the deficit, preferring more modest steps to encourage small businesses to grow or help homeowners boost energy efficiency.

Let me see if I have this correct: he has no problem jacking the deficit with his Generational Theft Act, his Omnibus spending bill, his $3.5 trillion 2010 budget, the Congressional health plans, and cap and tax. But, to get the official unemployment rate, standing now at 10.2%, to drop bystimulating the private sector? Nope, he isn’t going there.

Alan Blinder, a Princeton professor and former vice chairman of the Fed who will attend the White House forum, said this was a rare moment when economic growth alone wouldn’t be enough to boost hiring. “We need to reverse the role of the horse and the cart,” he said.

He is pitching an immediate $60 billion jobs program that would hire two million workers to clean parks, work in schools or fix roads. Such a program, he says, would push the unemployment rate back toward 9%.

The unions, who will be heavily represented at the event, want something much bigger. AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka is proposing a plan that would extend jobless benefits, send billions in relief to the states, open up credit to small businesses, pour more into infrastructure projects, and bring throngs of new workers onto the federal payroll — at a cost of between $400 billion and $500 billion.

So, a good chunk of the people who are going to be at the summit are going to push for more and more people being hired by Los Federales. Because that has worked so darned well so far. Most of the money spent so far on the Stimulus – that massive program which needed to be passed without debate because otherwise the unemployment rate would go above 8%, though most of the money would be spent in an election year – has gone to blue collar construction jobs run by the government, which are pretty much ending. Guess which groups won’t be there

Administration officials, however, have excluded major trade associations from the summit, including the National Association of Manufacturers and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which represent many of the country’s largest employers.

A good chunk of the representation for private sector employees and companies. And the initial jobless claims figures just came out, which the media is spinning as good news, despite there being 457,000 new claims in the week ending November 28.

Crossed at Pirate’s Cove

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