The PJ Tatler

Valerie Jarrett: Unemployment Checks Stimulate the Economy

Well, here we go again: Someone high up in the Democratic party, trying to sell unemployment checks as stimulative to the economy–

“Even though we had a terrible economic crisis three years ago, throughout our country many people were suffering before the last three years, particularly in the black community,” Jarrett said. “And so we need to make sure that we continue to support that important safety net. It not only is good for the family, but it’s good for the economy. People who receive that unemployment check go out and spend it and help stimulate the economy, so that’s healthy as well.”

Valerie Jarrett isn’t some low-level functionary with no influence. She is Barack Obama’s closest adviser. Her thinking tends to represent the president’s own thinking. She is not alone in her view of unemployment as a form of economic stimulus.

Nancy Pelosi pitched a nearly identical argument in July 2010, with a bit more oomph on unemployment as “one of the fastest ways to create jobs.” Pelosi was Speaker of the House and wielded massive political power when she said this:

“It creates jobs faster than almost any other initiative you can name.”

If Pelosi and Jarrett are correct, why don’t we just carpet bomb the whole country with government checks?

We can waste our time debating about what Rick Santorum said at a Catholic university four years ago, or we can focus our attention on just how insane the current regime is when it comes to jobs and freedom. For instance, Pelosi also sold ObamaCare as an “entrepreneurial bill” that would allow Americans to essentially drop out of the productive economy to pursue their dreams of being musicians or artists. Speaker of the House. She said this.

How it’s “entrepreneurial” to encourage people to drop out of the productive economy and have their health care paid for by others is a question Pelosi ought to have been asked, but hasn’t been. Both of her statements are about as far from common sense as Pluto is from the Sun.

The past couple of years prove Jarrett and Pelosi wrong. The Democrats got their “entrepreneurial” ObamaCare passed and signed into law, and Congress has kept on extending unemployment benefits right over the horizon.

Yet Gallup sees a “sharp deterioriation” in the job market and unemployment remains stubbornly up around 9%. If ObamaCare and unemployment checks are so massively stimulative to the economy, why is unemployment still so high?