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The impact of government policies on your job search

Today, President Obama will be coming to Charlotte to stop by a plant that has received $49 million in stimulus dollars for their "green jobs" efforts. His visit comes during a time of the high unemployment in Charlotte and North Carolina, the highest in at least 20 years.

Since the latter months of President Bush's time in office, the country has spent trillions of dollars in TARP, stimulus spending, and unemployment benefits. Folks will differ on whether TARP was necessary or wise for years to come. The stimulus was touted as necessary to keep unemployment below 8.5%, but it rose to 10.5%, with analysts believing that the "real" number is 17.3%. Unemployment benefits have been extended multiple times, and proposed to go up to 99 weeks. That's almost 2 years!

 

What is the impact of the stimulus spending? Government officials tout that it has "saved" more jobs than it has created, but this is difficult to quantify. Money has been given to some companies and not others. Money that the government spends can't be used by private firms to create jobs because they pay the taxes. There does appear to be a semblance of favoritism with the government picking the winners and losers. The US has the highest corporate tax rate in the world, and this will affect the cost of goods and services. Maybe if the government wasn't providing money to businesses of its choosing, typically political donors, the job market would recover on its own as companies could spend their own money as the see fit. After all, this recession has seen lots of white collar job losses, and I doubt that those individuals are anxious to work on roads and bridges. They just don't have the skill sets needed.

The extension of unemployment benefits may be hindering the job recovery as well. Studies show that an unemployed individual's chances of finding work increase dramatically during the last week of benefits. Hunger and desire for shelter will do that to a person.

The whole point here is to get you to not rely on government to solve your unemployment problem. After all, most of the politicians in DC have no clue of what the average worker goes through. The actions they take are mostly in the interest of self-preservation, not for your benefit. You still need to develop a plan that works for you to find work that fits your skills and abilities, values, dreams, passions, and your personality tendencies.

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