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Sunday, September 05, 2010

DLA for Sunday 090510

Coming from the O Files.

Hey folks,

I love the Osgood Files. On Friday he was talking with Prof. Robert Barro, Harvard University, about the Economy. Here is the Transcript.

The other day in The Wall Street Journal, Harvard University economics professor Robert Barro wrote that by extending jobless benefits to as much as 99 weeks, Congress and the Obama Administration are now subsidizing unemployment - and that if it weren't for that, the unemployment rate might be six-point-eight percent, instead of hovering around nine-and-a-half percent. His reasoning after this...

((( SPOT )))

Harvard economist Robert Barro's contention that this Congress and Administration may be prolonging, rather than shortening, the jobless recession is based in part on two things.

SOT - Prof. Robert Barro, Harvard University
"There's been a very large increase in the long-term unemployed, in particular - it stands out relative to previous recessions, post-World War II..." (:09)

And the second factor?

SOT - Prof. Robert Barro
"It's generally accepted that that expansion - a more liberal unemployment insurance program - would encourage people to take somewhat longer finding jobs, accepting jobs - searching for them..." (:10)

And so?

SOT - Prof. Robert Barro
"So, I put the two facts together - it's conceivable we could have a substantial effect on the unemployment rate - and at least a rough 'guesstimate' that it could've been instead of nine-and-a-half percent, we might've gotten something closer to seven percent." (:13)

It's not that the unemployed don't want to work, he says.

SOT - Prof. Robert Barro
"People, of course, still want to find work - and it's still true that it's a difficult atmosphere to find work when we're in a big recession. But, it's still true that people can look more - and they can look at more jobs, they can accept jobs that are less attractive than what they were used to..." (:15)

No doubt it was out of compassion and good intentions that the government extended those benefits. They just think it's pretty cold and Scroogey for Professor Barrow to point out what he's pointing out.

SOT - Prof. Robert Barro
"There seems to be a lot of reluctance of actually putting forward the hypothesis that part of the increase in the unemployment rate, particularly long term, could've been fashioned because of this liberalization of the benefits." (:11)

The Osgood File. Charles Osgood on the CBS Radio Network.

The Osgood File. September 3rd, 2010.
Thank you Charles Osgood for airing this. Congratulations to YOU Professor Barro for not only having the courage to ask the question, but the courage to openly state the Logical and accurate answer to that question. Is it Liberal Policies that are extending the Economic Crisis we are in today? Of course.
Peter

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