Who Are You Going to Call?

President Obama met with some business "leaders" (i.e., big business CEOs) to ask them how the government can create jobs.

Here's a hint: Their answer will be wrong. The Big Business call for government solutions are meant to restrict trade to help their own bottom lines. No surprise.

Restricting trade hurts jobs overall. Maybe it help jobs who are favored by the protectionist legislation Big Business likes.

The answer to more jobs overall is not one generally pleasing to Big Business. It is: stop placing barriers to entry into the markets for all goods and services. Stop taxing, licensing, permitting, and regulation, regulation and more regulations. All this government tinkering helps Big Business keeps its smaller competitors out (and jobless) and keeps prices up.

The government punishes businesses for having employees, punishment Big Business is better able to weather. The government punishes business by taxing payrolls. By punishing work and rewarding non-work, the inevitable happens. The government punishes by imposing costly regulation. The state governments especially punish employers who hire minority workers, by preventing the employers from firing the non-productive. The inevitable result: higher unemployment among minorities, particularly African Americans. Big Business is better positioned to take the risks.

President Obama is plainly asking the wrong people about what the government can do to "help" them create jobs. The right answer is do less. Much, much less that government is doing now.

Good luck.

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