Press Secretary Jay Carney has gotten testy with reporters lately, specifically Fox's Ed Henry. But now he's turned his ire on the Wall Street Journal.
Yesterday, a Journal reporter asked how the White House can claim that extending unemployment insurance actually creates jobs. Carney didn't want to be challenged, and so he quickly attacked the messenger:
“Oh, uh, it is by, uh, I would expect a reporter from the Wall Street Journal would know this as part of the entrance exam.”
Ouch. After putting down his sword, he then went on to answer the question:
“It is one of the most direct ways to infuse money directly into the economy because people who are unemployed and obviously aren’t running a paycheck are going to spend the money that they get. They’re not going to save it, they’re going to spend it. And with unemployment insurance, that way, the money goes directly back into the economy, dollar for dollar virtually.”
Watch for yourself:
Let's look at that a little closer. Unemployment checks -- the money you get for not having a job -- actually create jobs? Really? Money for not having a job creates jobs? Doesn't that seem to be a bastardization of trickle-down economics, with a communist flavor? Aren't businesses -- not the unemployed -- the job creators? And with that logic, should we just put everyone on the dole?
Bryan Preston over at Pajamas Media explains:
Here’s the thing. True, unemployment pays people money and they’re likely to spend it. But you’re also paying people not to work. Not to produce anything. The longer you pay them to not work, the longer they’re likely not to work. And the money to pay people not to work has to come from somewhere. Guess where (besides Jay Carney’s back side)?
That’s right — from people who are working, being productive, and who also are likely to spend the money. While unemployment insurance of some form and length is reasonable, the notion that it creates jobs is laughable on a Seinfeldian level. It’s a safety net, not an engine of our economic might.
Put it this way: If Carney’s logic held up, we should just carpet bomb the country in unemployment checks, forever. That would create a billion jobs and we’d all be swimming in prosperity.
You have to wonder who failed the entrance exam.
(via Gateway Pundit)