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Saturday, February 4, 2012

Government creates jobs

Recently I was at a meeting where I heard Frank McNulty, Speaker of the House for the Colorado legislature, address a group of Douglas County elected and appointed officials. He said, "Of course, government doesn't create jobs."

I gather this is one of the new talking points for the Republicans. But it doesn't take much thought to recognize that Representative McNulty is mistaken. When a school district hires a teacher, when a town hires a policeman, when a fire district hires a firefighter, when a library hires a librarian, and indeed when the United States Armed Forces hires a soldier, all of these government agencies are indeed creating jobs. We pay people to do work, just like a business. Offering a job is creating employment. This point is particularly clear to people who get laid off. It doesn't make any difference whether it's private or public sector.

Strangely, McNulty then spoke about the need to continue to build and maintain our roads. Those roads are paid for, of course, by government. And when the people approve a new bond, the money is used to hire workers. In other words, of course, government does create jobs.

I don't know why it is that so many politicians run on the theme of contempt for government. If they really have a such a low opinion of it, then why do they want the job? Yeah, it's a job for them, too.

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