Nothing but the Truth!
By Will Power
September 13, 2010 (San Diego) -- Since it is clear banks and brokers would rather lay people off then hire them, it is time the U.S. Government provide entry-level jobs in public service to stimulate the economy. This worked before, when the CCC and WPA provided millions of unemployed US citizens with jobs and training that helped the U.S. out of the Great Depression.
For example, hiring college students as teacher's aides to grade papers, provide classroom security, and teacher training is not expensive and could greatly help improve schools. These jobs need not be full-time, but would help pay the increasing tuition driving many students out of college. As a teacher with 20 years experience, I can tell you that having another responsible adult in the classroom cuts down on distractions by 90%. Simply having another person in the room helps teachers immeasurably.
Inner-city youth forces include thousands of strong, idle teenagers with loads of testosterone and nothing to do. Teach them to use chainsaws and start cutting down dead trees in the urban-rural interface and giving the free firewood to older people. This could cut down on our fire costs which seem to be doubling every year. It is easier to prevent fires than put them out in a firestorm.
A robust solar-cell industry would be an expensive but useful way to provide employment. As the price of solar cells goes down, the benefits of household solar will continue to climb. The U..S cannot continue to let China pass the US in solar development. If we put solar cells on every roof, think of the savings!
Past projects like the Peace Corps and Vista could be revived. Truthfully the economic benefits of such programs cannot be measured by cost-benefit analysis. The notion that young people actually can earn money and help society at the same time is not just liberal wishful thinking. If private enterprise continues to keep its profits private, it is time to try plan B.
Government jobs may be expensive, but they provide entry-level experience for students that can later prove to be invaluable experience down the road. Since private enterprise seems inclined to sit on their money rather than invest in the nation's future, it is time for the government to step up.
Will Power is a retired history teacher and creative writing instructor.