27 2 mins 9 yrs

Here is how Government “creates” jobs;

Fewer than one in 20 people enrolled in a Londonderry ‘back to work’ scheme have managed to secure long-term employment.

The Department for Employment and Learning (DEL) is to scrap its Steps to Work contract with the North West Regional College after “unacceptably” poor results at getting people into employment. The original £2.4m contract had stipulated that the North West Regional College needed to ensure 25% of those enrolled got jobs.

But today it can be revealed that only around 12% of those who took part in the scheme found any sort of work beyond their training. 

Even more staggering is the disclosure that within six months of graduating from the programme, only 4.75% were still in employment — less than a fifth of the target set by the Department.

Get that stat? £2.4 MILLION paid to get 20 people into some sort of jobs. The State, in this case the Department of Employment and Learning, just takes YOUR cash and splashes it down the drain. Farcical. I wonder which individuals benefited from all this cash floating about?

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27 thoughts on “WORTH THE CASH?

  1. It’s a ridiculous myth that governments can “create jobs”.
    Alright, yes, governments can hire people to perform unproductive tasks, and pay those people with money looted from the actual productive sector, but that is not “creating jobs” in the economic sense, it’s merely “keeping people employed and paying them with other people’s confiscated earnings”. Such a practise, however, does not merely not help the real economy; it actively harms it because it drains away capital which would otherwise be invested in those industries which become monopolised by public funding.

  2. Don’t be so rigid.

    All the big rich countries, including Japan, Germany, and Korea who all came from nothing after the war, all of them grew rich with the aid of industrial policies of one kind or another, and where government and industry and labor worked together.

    Each of them deserve credit for the prosperity that was created. Their prosperity rests on a three legged stool.

  3. Obama thinks the government creates all the jobs.

    The unions think that they create all the jobs.

    The bosses / investors think that they create all the jobs.

    They’re all wrong.

  4. Nope, Phantom, you’re wrong.
    The bosses and investors create all the prosperity (‘jobs’ is the wrong word here, as it’s not the absolute number of people with jobs which count per-se, it’s economic prosperity).

    Look at countries where the entire economy is (or was) controlled by the state – the USSR, East Germany, North Korea. In each case, the population is/was desperately poor. NK requires food aid. Why? Because its economy is state-controlled and therefore it produces nothing with which to trade for food.

    By comparison with those places, of course the UK/USA/Japan etc are wealthy. But not as wealthy as they would be if the free market was left entirely to itself. As a public sector increases, so the overall wealth of a population decreases.

  5. But not as wealthy as they would be if the free market was left entirely to itself.

    That is speculation.

    100% of the world’s rich countries have mixed economies and state services.

    Next case!

  6. “Look at countries where the entire economy is (or was) controlled by the state – the USSR, East Germany, North Korea. In each case, the population is/was desperately poor. NK requires food aid. Why? Because its economy is state-controlled and therefore it produces nothing with which to trade for food.”

    Or look at Somalia, where none of the economy is controlled by the state. By your reasoning they should be an economic powerhouse.

    “The bosses and investors create all the prosperity (‘jobs’ is the wrong word here, as it’s not the absolute number of people with jobs which count per-se, it’s economic prosperity).”

    No they don’t (all the people that work for them obviously play a part, for a kick off). But even if they did we can see that all of these people are smart enough to do what they do in places that are not like Somalia. Places that create and enforce property rights and contract law and courts and national defence and other public goods, none of which is free. These things also benefit the ‘wealth creators’ the most.

    But if you really believe what you say, why don’t you try your luck in Somalia and tell us how you get on?

  7. And the population in the USSR and more especially East Germany was not desperately poor, not in the later years, not by a long shot.

    It lagged way behind that of the west, and everyone in East Germany and Russia was well aware of that fact.

    North Korea is indeed desperately poor, or maybe worse if that is possible.

  8. Or look at Somalia, where none of the economy is controlled by the state. By your reasoning they should be an economic powerhouse.

    No Frank – Somalia is populated by Somalis and they could never create an economic powerhouse regardless of any eonomic system.

  9. On reflection, you have a good point there, Frank – perhaps I was wrong to imply that the size of a country’s public sector and the extent to which the state controls the economy is the one and only factor which limits the potential for economic growth. Obviously, the reason why Somalia is doing rather poorly is probably not because the state has grown too large. Likewise, the fact that Zimbabwe, once described as “the bread-basket of Africa” is now more frequently referred to as “the basket-case” thereof…..yup, I think perhaps it’s best to leave Africa out of the equation altogether, too many imponderables.

  10. Tom,

    ‘too many imponderables.’

    Don’t you really mean – ‘too many unmentionables’?

  11. No, I mean imponderables, ie, factors which I cannot readily quantify (or even qualify – for example, the fact that, in arguing this point with, say, Phantom, at least we both have roughly the same idea of what ‘wealth’ means to us. The same might not hold true for a Somalian).

  12. Tom, unfettered capitalism has also been tried elsewhere and the result was people living in company houses and shopping at the company store using company scrip issued by the ‘wealth creators’.

    There are levels of government where smaller more decentralised government is certainly desirable, but there’s also such a thing as too little government. Not that this is the problem we have now. But you need some level of government for the things I mention above and to ensure (maximally fair) competition. And no it’s not theft when people are expected to pay for that.

    Point to the failings of government as much as you like, the private sector has similar failings. In fact I doubt you can name a system worth having and realistically attainable that doesn’t have waste, corruption and parasites. For example even a system of property rights necessarily comes with thieves, robbers and burglars. That doesn’t mean property rights aren’t worth having.

  13. I think I can agree with most of what you say there, Frank. Yes, there are crooked and greedy people who will try and take advantage of any system, be it USSR-style socialism or USA-style capitalism. There’s no perfection to be found under the sun.
    But in general, my money, that which I earn by my labour, is mine by rights, all of it. I don’t owe a fraction of it to anyone or any state, and I can spend it more productively than someone who takes it away from me can.

  14. Tom,

    “But in general, my money, that which I earn by my labour, is mine by rights, all of it.”

    No it isn’t. When you talk about what is yours you invoke a system of property rights. That raises the question of which one? If that’s your own private system then none of the rest of us need take a blind bit of notice of it – we can simply take ‘your’ stuff as we please, and you can continue to imagine it’s “really” yours “by rights”.

    On the other hand if you expect to play in the same system of property rights that the rest of us do, rather than make up your own self-serving definitions as you go along, then you need to pay towards its upkeep and enforcement. Because that’s the deal, we haven’t agreed to let you join in otherwise. Not to pay your share and to demand everyone give you the benefits anyway is theft.

  15. Yes it IS my own money, Frank, end of. We absolutely have to start any sort of economic debate from that most basic premise: What I worked for and earned, is mine.

    Secondly, who is giving me any choice about what ‘system’ I wish to ‘play in’? I would gladly not use the NHS, or public roads, etc, if the state had not banished my choice by monopolising those areas. I have no choice but to drive to work along publicly-funded roads, there are no other sort available to me, because the theft of my money and its expenditure upon such roads has vanquished the market and confiscated the capital for anyone else to build the private roads I would otherwise happily use. So please do not tell me that I am free to opt out of all this and to only use the ‘private roads’ I would happily pay a private company to use. That choice simply is not there any more, it has been obliterated by the forcible theft (yes, it is theft) of my money.

  16. From Allan’s link:

    “Note that the methodology used to create the estimates has been highly criticized and this graphic should only be used to illustrate Lynn & Vanhanen’s estimates and not any factual representation of IQs.”

    You could make a similar color map of infant mortality and conclude that Africans were genetically disposed to die before the age of 5, and your reasoning would be equally faulty.

    Like infant mortality, IQ has a known environmental component, as well as a known heritable genetic component. Which dominates is a subject of ongoing research and experts such as James Flynn (of the ‘Flynn Effect’ fame), argues that the black-white IQ gap could be entirely environmental (though he would also say that this is not fully proven yet). In this set of youtube links he debates the guy who wrote The Bell Curve on that topic.

  17. This is how the state operates. It takes our money by force, spends most of it on useless “community equality officers” and all that crap, but it just happens to spend it on, say, a road between point A and point B (the crucial point here is that only one road is required – once the state has built that road, there is no longer any incentive for the free market to build a second road. Thus, the state has monopolised that free-market requirement for a road to exist. The road now exists; there is no need for anyone to build another one). Thus, the state can turn the argument on its head, and say “Oooh, you naughty tax infidel, you argue against taxation yet you use our road!” Well, I wouldn’t use your bloody road, had you not confiscated my money and made your road the only road that need be used!”

  18. Tom,

    “Secondly, who is giving me any choice about what ‘system’ I wish to ‘play in’?”

    You. You can leave.

    It’s one thing to object to details of specific government programs but to act like you can have property rights and courts and ‘your’ money and all the rest and you get to unilaterally set the price of that at zero is nonsense.

    Almost all of what you might call the ‘discretionary’ tax take or government spending goes to things like universal healthcare, public education, and welfare, on top of things like policing and courts etc. Almost nobody thinks that there should be absolutely none of those things (even on the topic of welfare most people think at least children are entitled to SOME kind of social safety net), and even those that do can’t expect the rest of the country to bend over backwards to facilitate their whining.

    So the interesting debate is not whether those things should be paid from taxes but how much and exactly how it should be done.

  19. Frank, I am not concerned with whatever “almost nobody thinks”, or with whatever “almost everybody thinks”. (Although I would agree, “almost nobody thinks”.) I say what I think.
    And if “most people think at least children are entitled to SOME kind of social safety net” then they are BBC/Guardian indoctrinated fools. I don’t think that anyone, man, woman or child, is automatically ‘entitled’ to loot someone else’s wallet for any reason at all.
    That is not to say that I don’t think people should be uncharitable, it’s not to say that I don’t want to donate voluntarily to the less fortunate. I do want to, and indeed I do. But it’s MY choice. That’s the point. I freely donate as I see fit, out of my OWN money.
    For the state to extort that money from me, is theft.

  20. * edit*, I meant, “That is not to say that I think people should be uncharitable”, not “that I don’t think…”

  21. Tom,

    “But it’s MY choice.”

    It a legitimate function of government to ensure fair competition and clearly a disadvantaged child is in no position to compete with you in the market. We don’t have to pretend that because you’re wealthy and the child isn’t, you won in a fair fight. We don’t have to pretend you hit a triple because you were born on third base.

    Also, a system where you can choose not to pay for another citizen’s basic welfare is one where you can freeload off others who do pay, and enjoy the benefits of not having children begging or dying on your street while others carry the costs. And yes I know you say you’d personally pay voluntarily anyway, but you argue that this is a legitimate choice that someone else could make.

    It’s only ‘theft’ if you pretend that the ones who don’t pay don’t benefit in any way from the ones that do, if you insist that the child has no worth beyond its immediate economic value, and if you pretend the child somehow had an equal shot at getting as wealthy as you are. Are you really such a free market fundamentalist that you want to argue that the market value of approximately zero for many poor or sick children is simply an optimally efficient allocation of resources that cannot be questioned?

  22. Society of any kind has rules, including tax rules. It has always been thus. You have some say in what your country’s rules are.

    This is not a bad thing.

    There is a case to be made for less government and lower tax but there is no real case to be made for no taxes and no real government. This silly extreme and ahistorical argument repels those who might be your natural allies and gives comfort to your enemies, who see no strong argument that they even have to address.

  23. One thing needed y every country which has a population with a sufficiently high intelligene to industrialise is sound money, at least, for a while. In the US, there are now no protections for depositors’ money so no point in keeping the money in a bank.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/08/10/us-sentinel-appeals-decision-idUSBRE87900T20120810

    – A federal appeals court on Thursday upheld a ruling that puts Bank of New York Mellon ahead of former customers of Sentinel in the line of those seeking the return of money lost in the 2007 failure of the suburban Chicago-based futures broker.

    The appeals court affirmed an earlier district court ruling that the bank had a “secured position” on a $312 million loan it gave to Sentinel, which turned out to have been secured by customer money.

    Futures brokers are required to keep customers’ funds in dedicated accounts to protect them from being used for anything other than client business.

    However, Thursday’s ruling suggests that brokerages can use customer funds to pay off other creditors, Sentinel trustee Fred Grede told Reuters.

    “I don’t think that’s what the Commodity Futures Trading Commission had in mind” with its requirement that brokers keep customer money separate from their own, he said.

    “It does not bode well for the protection of customer funds.”

    Worse, Grede said, is that the ruling suggests that a brokerage that allows customer money to be mixed with its own is not necessarily committing fraud. –

  24. Allan,

    “every country which has a population with a sufficiently high intelligene to industrialise”

    You mean there are those who do not? Enlighten me, do.

    “Sentinel trustee Fred Grede told Reuters.”

    Reuters were scheduled to interview Jack Goode but he had to cancel.

  25. Richard – there is almost an entire continent of which the population has an average IQ insufficient to sustain industrialisation and I linked to it at 9.45pm yesterday. Hopefully you will be enlightened.

  26. Allan

    Gosh, when you wrote that “there is almost an entire continent of which the population has an average IQ insufficient to sustain industrialisation” I thought you were bad-mouthing the penguins of Antarctica. Then I recalled that they’re black and white.

    So I went to your link, expecting the expected. And yes, quelle surprise, it’s messrs Lynn and Vanhanen, the doyens of racists everywhere.

    Do have a look at what respectable researchers think of them. Here’s a snippet from that page.

    For instance, they [Lynn and Vanhanen] used IQ data from Ferron (1965), who provided averages in seven samples of children from Sierra Leone and Nigeria on a little-known IQ test called the Leone. For reasons not given, Lynn (2006) and Lynn and Vanhanen (2006) only used data from the two lowest scoring samples from Nigeria. Most of the remaining samples show higher scores, but those samples were not included in the estimation of the national IQ of Nigeria and Sierra Leone.

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