Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Obama set to Create 2.5 M Jobs

  1. Nov 22, 2008 #1

    LowlyPion

    User Avatar
    Homework Helper

    But will it work?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m17pz0R_qZo

    Will there be more money for traffic cams I wonder?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 22, 2008 #2
    Renewable energy, nice!
     
  4. Nov 22, 2008 #3
    Wonderful vidio Pion! I can't thank you enough for raising my blood pressure 25 points.
     
  5. Nov 24, 2008 #4

    Astronuc

    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    This is more about job recovery than creating new jobs.

    Will the jobs provide decent wages, or will they simply replace the low paying jobs lost?
     
  6. Nov 24, 2008 #5
    Creating higher paying jobs is certainly better, and talking about the fungibility of jobs is important when you're replacing one industry with another, for example, but in the situation we're in now I think it might sort of be looking a gift horse in the mouth to worry about pay rates if they actually manage to create 2.5 million jobs in the current economic environment.
     
  7. Nov 24, 2008 #6

    Vanadium 50

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Education Advisor
    2015 Award

    It's also perhaps worth pointing out that even the President has limited power in creating jobs. He can want to create 2.5M jobs, but it's not like the President has a button on this desk labeled "create more jobs". Otherwise, it would have been pushed before, probably by Herbert Hoover.
     
  8. Nov 24, 2008 #7

    Astronuc

    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    I think it is important to consider the quality of jobs. One could create twice as many jobs at half the wages/salaries for a given amount of expenditure, but it would mean that twice as many people have reduced spending.

    In my area, the minimum price for new house is about $300K, and no builder wants to build for less, although there is one developer who want to build 'high density' housing, which is basically apartments and condos - which are usually small units of low quality - in which people are basically warehoused. I see in that a trend to warehouse the lower middle class just like the tenements/projects were used to warehouse the poor in NY, LA, Chicago and other metropolitan areas. Most kids around here expect to live at home or leave the area for places they can afford to live. On the other hand, college graduates are having a hard time finding well paying jobs. Nevertheless, I'd expect someone starting out to have 2 or 3 room-mates to share expensive and/or live in low cost housing like I did in grad school.

    I expect that the 'job creation' comes from government spending on highways, bridges and tunnels, i.e. transportation infrastructure. From what I've seen, they need to improve the quality of design and construction, because a lot of what I've build recently has deteriorated rapidly to roughly the condition that existed when the new construction began - in less than one decade.
     
  9. Nov 24, 2008 #8

    Vanadium 50

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Education Advisor
    2015 Award

    If that's the case, I wish him the best of luck. In my state, the construction companies have lobbied very hard to use the cheapest material possible. It's in their best interest to build a road, and have to rebuild it every ten years and not every twenty.
     
  10. Nov 24, 2008 #9
    But if the larger number of jobs is the number that's needed, because there's a depression, then for half of those people it's not a matter of reduced spending, it's a matter of having a job at all. The people who are seeking jobs to boost their standard of living aren't the target of this effort I don't think. If the choice is between 2.5 million people having to take a job that affords them a lower standard than they're accustomed to, and 1.25 million people not having a job at all we want the first option, don't we?

    If this was about strengthening the economy coming from a stable economic position I would totally agree with you, for sure.
     
  11. Nov 24, 2008 #10

    mgb_phys

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    It depends - both versions have been tried.
    Pay 1.25M people minimum wage to dig a hole and 1.25M to fill it in, at least they have jobs.
    Pay 100K high wages to build aircraft carriers, they will spend that money on cars, restaurants, movies which will employ 2.4M people and create an economy.
     
  12. Nov 24, 2008 #11
    There is nothing to stop the gov't from creating jobs if they want to. But history has shown that when they do, they create the wrong jobs. They lack the innovative mindset to funnel resources into new technologies. I expect you could create a lot of jobs by supporting the buggy whip industry. Or they could shore up those automakers whose costs are higher than anyone can afford and whose products are not wanted.
     
  13. Nov 24, 2008 #12
    Buggy whips for all!
     
  14. Nov 24, 2008 #13

    Moonbear

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    It's not reduced spending to have a job created where one did not previously exist. That's increased spending. Someone with no income now will have some income.

    That'll correct itself. Either they'll move to places like here where housing is cheaper and create new jobs in new locations, or when nobody is buying the $300K houses, the builders will realize they need to build $150 K ones or go bankrupt. Overpriced housing can also help revitalize run-down areas, because young professionals or couples starting out can't afford the established neighborhoods, so start buying into the run-down ones for their starter homes, and build them up and clean up the neighborhood in the process.

    I doubt it. If unions were tossed out, maybe, but Obama is a union supporter, so won't be the one to do that. So, as long as the unions control highway construction, that's not going to be a place to create a lot of new jobs. It's a good idea and a good place for jobs, but unions are in the way.
     
  15. Nov 24, 2008 #14

    russ_watters

    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    Actually, the government [not the president alone] can just decree job creation. It's simple: they can literally go out and hire 2.5 million people and pay them directly.

    The way this is actually going to work, though, appears to be only slightly different: with government contracted work. Public works projects, research projects, etc. If you decide build a new road, you take a bunch of construction workers who are currently idle and put them to work. And obviously, the government has pressed that button before.

    Regarding cost, it is easy to calculate the direct cost: if you create 2.5 million jobs at an average of $75K per job (remember, what you get paid is much less than what it costs to employ you), that's $187.5 Billion. Now those people will take their government job and pay taxes on it, giving some of that money back to the govt. And many of those people would have been on welfare and/or unemployment compensation, giving more of it back. In the grand scheme of things, $187B not a terrible sum of money, but let's hope he creates useful jobs with it.

    There is a secondary effect of artificial job creation, though: via supply and demand, it increases the cost (salary) of other workers in those industries. Now that sounds good, but then that decreases profits, causes layoffs, causes inflation, etc.

    So am I actually in favor of this or against it? I'm not sure. In general, I dislike government intervention into the economy, though.
     
  16. Nov 24, 2008 #15

    mgb_phys

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    And thus, the DMV was born

    And in the case of the DMV in expensive mental health facilities.

    It's about the budget for the army's Future Combat Systems program (and so historicaly about 25% of the final cost).
    These smart weapons could easily be replaced by DMV clerks.
     
  17. Nov 24, 2008 #16

    Vid

    User Avatar

    I don't know about other states, but here in Louisiana I see public works projects being a major boon to the economy. Most of the workers in South Louisiana are general labor workers that support the oil industry. An increase in public works projects would allow unemployed general labors to find good well paying jobs. Considering that average wage in Louisiana is only 30k, these jobs would be a huge boost to an economy torn apart by recent hurricanes. Not to mention that fact that public works projects are already needed since a lot of infrastructure was torn apart by these storms.
     
  18. Nov 24, 2008 #17

    mgb_phys

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    It's also an industry that has been hit by the construction downturn, so there is a lot of spare capacity in everything from the quarries, through the cement plants, the plant hire and specialists like engineers/surveyors.
    Irrespective of govt bailouts this is a really good time to start large civil eng projects.
     
  19. Nov 25, 2008 #18
    Renewable energy is nice, but how much is Obama going to invest in research and construction of nuclear plants?
     
  20. Nov 25, 2008 #19

    Ivan Seeking

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    Why? Unions don't want jobs?
     
  21. Nov 25, 2008 #20

    Ivan Seeking

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    I don't know if any budget plans have been announced, but his position generally is as follows:

    http://www.barackobama.com/pdf/factsheet_energy_speech_080308.pdf

    One of his primary areas of interest has been the tracking and management of nuclear materials globally.
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?



Similar Discussions: Obama set to Create 2.5 M Jobs
  1. Obama's Candidacy (Replies: 464)

  2. Obama is reelected (Replies: 134)

  3. Obama in India (Replies: 9)

Loading...