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Welcome To The Lloyd Dobler Economy


Lloyd Dobler: I don't want to sell anything, buy anything, or process anything as a career. I don't want to sell anything bought or processed, or buy anything sold or processed, or process anything sold, bought, or processed, or repair anything sold, bought, or processed. You know, as a career, I don't want to do that.

Rick Manning, writing at The Hill, notes that bad news of the day (housing prices) and upcoming jobless numbers illustrate a fundamental divide between Republicans and Democrats.

"Republican lawmakers have responded to renewed signs of weakness with a jobs plan that prescribes more of the same 'fixes' that Republicans always recommend no matter the problem: mainly high-end tax cuts, deregulation, more domestic oil drilling and federal spending cuts.

"The White House has offered sounder ideas, including job retraining, plans to boost educational achievement and tax increases to help cover needed spending."

In just a few lines, the Times managed to encapsulate the left's complete lack of understanding of why jobs are created.

To be clear, jobs get created in private enterprise when additional labor is required to produce goods or services that will increase the profit of the enterprise.

Jobs don't get created:

A: because people are trained to do them.

B: because people have higher educational attainment.

C: by raising taxes on those who we hope will create the jobs.

[read the full story]

Manning goes on to show an example of an Alaskan mine that enivormental activists and the administration have kept from opening for years. Thousands of jobs have not been created where they clearly could be with a few strokes of a regulators pen. Similar examples can be found in industries all over the country. New jobs are being killed in energy, mining, and oil by the tens of thousands by government inaction and environmentalist lobbying, and drilling bans. Ultimately those jobs are shipped overseas or never created.

Our country can't keep turning out Lloyd Dobler's forever; we need people who buy, sell, build, drill, hammer, etc. And we need people to start companies that hire people to do those things.


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Comments (14)

Hell, another 4 years of Ob... (Below threshold)
Tsar Nicholas II:

Hell, another 4 years of Obama and we'll devolve from the Lloyd Dobler economy to the Lane Meyer economy. Two dollars is all we'll have.

The Lloyd Dobler character ... (Below threshold)
Thomas A Milton:

The Lloyd Dobler character was an annoying fool, but compared to nitwit John Cusack, Dobler looks like a world-beating genius.

Or Not. Old. No grandchildr... (Below threshold)

Or Not. Old. No grandchildren. Don't care.

It's amazing how the libera... (Below threshold)

It's amazing how the liberals always scream about companies shifting jobs overseas. They never make the connection that it's THEIR party writing laws that force companies overseas - or stay here and commit economic suicide.

I thought everybody knew th... (Below threshold)
ast Author Profile Page:

I thought everybody knew that the big problem was idle capital, trillions of dollars in the hands of businesses who are hesitating to commit it to building inventory, manufacturing or other activities that require hiring employees. Why the hesitation? They don't know how Obamacare is going to affect the costs of hiring workers nor what their taxes will be in the future. Remember those Bush era tax cuts the expiration of which was postponed until 2012? The Democrats are counting on that expiration to boost taxes and cut these horrendous deficits. The problem is that as long as they're out there, idle capital is going to stay idle or at least be put to work cautiously, and so the economy grows slowly, precisely the effect that the Stimulus Bill was supposed to fix. The problem was that the stimulus didn't create much new demand or jobs, largely because "shovel ready" jobs don't exist. There's too much red tape to get them approved and underway.

And the Democrats still don't get it. They think only more spending will save us. You can persuade people to jump down from a height of 5 to 10 feet a whole lot easier that from 5 to 10 storeys.

The only thing that will signal a better future is the wholesale defeat of big spenders from both parties and a second installment of Senators who will vote with the House to repeal Obamacare and a President who will veto overspending and sign bill cutting it.

The owner of the small (but... (Below threshold)

The owner of the small (but growing) company I work for is 75 years old - could have retired in luxury years ago, but chose to chase his dream and create his own business. After years of limited success, he was notified by the city that the sign with the company name located on the front of the building was out of compliance with city codes. In order to meet the codes, he'd have to fill out quarterly reports and file fees with the city. So, down came the sign.

So, now we're rapidly expanding the business and I wonder to myself why he doesn't just cash in - why should he deal with this nonsense at his age ? Not to mention city water inspections, taxes galore, new rules and regulations on hiring and paying workers, OSHA, W-2's... it's an endless list. I certainly wouldn't do it.

I'm personally really scared that most Americans haven't a clue anymore how jobs are created and the effort it takes to get to that point. Why would anyone subject themselves to the risk and hardships of running a business in this country ? So much easier to be an employee and judge others rather than take a risk, work hard and be judged harshly and constantly.

It's hopeless fighting these clueless idiots.

Nothing will get better unt... (Below threshold)

Nothing will get better until people conclude that "I am my brothers' keeper" drove us to collapse; and then they have to get behind better ethics (not just reject them). There is a very long way to go, both in the crash phase and the shift in ideas.

What this country really ne... (Below threshold)
tim maguire:

What this country really needs is bigger government to hire all those trained educated unemployed people as administrators. Regulations will have to be increased to give them something to administrate and taxes will have to be raised to pay for it all.

Egoist -There's a ... (Below threshold)

Egoist -

There's a difference between 'I'm my brother's keeper' as in advising and counseling so they can learn and grow, and 'I'm my brother's keeper' as in providing for his living so he doesn't have to work to exist.

Government, however, seems to go more toward the latter than the former. The problem with good intentions is that they can come with unanticipated consequences - and the more attractive the idea is, usually the less thought is put towards avoidance or mitigation of the unanticipated side effects.

Case in point - Welfare. Good idea - provide a safety net in case of catastrophe for folks. Unanticipated consequence - folks deciding, when they fall into a need for Welfare, that the money they get from being on Welfare is sufficient to exist comfortably on for an indefinite period of time. End result, instead of using Welfare as a safety net (which you fall into when things go bad, but when they get better you get out of and go on with your life) some see it as a hammock which they fall into and never see a reason to get out of again.

Good idea, worthwhile purpose - but with unintended consequences that cause problems long-term.

I agree - we need a new paradigm, stat. Or we're gonna flatline.

"I'm personally really s... (Below threshold)
Mike Giles:

"I'm personally really scared that most Americans haven't a clue anymore how jobs are created and the effort it takes to get to that point.

Far too many of the opinion makers, "the chattering classes", government bureaucrats, the arts, law; work in fields where jobs are a matter of luck and/or money just seems to appear. It's hard to show people who get paid for speaking, or writing, or arguing that it takes actual effort and risk to build businesses and provide jobs. How do you get through to a John Edwards type trial lawyer that those immense settlements actually come out of real peoples pocket's and cost real people their jobs? Hey it's just the insurance companies. Explain to some Hollywood type, who walked down one day, read for a part, and now makes millions; that creating an economy takes hard work? Until you see people actually do it, sometimes it doesn't sink in that people actually risk their lives so you can have crab legs or coal. We are now, about three generations into the most prosperous culture in the history of mankind, and we have raised three generations who take it as a given. It was there when they were born, while they grew up, all their lives. So it just "has" to continue on into the future. And they need do nothing to continue it. And the people that are constantly whining about the environment? They don't believe it themselves, or they'd actually cut back themselves. In reality it's just a "fashion statement". And no matter what they do, the good times will continue to roll. Turn the Central Valley of California back into a desert? It doesn't matter the organic lettuce will still be down at Whole Foods. Block Lumbering, Mining and Drilling for Oil? Don't worry they'll find the materials some how, some way. Everybody driving electric cars? We'll get the energy from Solar and Wind, because we all know the sun shines 24/7 and the wind always blows.

I think this is theC... (Below threshold)
Haiku Guy:

I think this is the
Chip Diller Economy
"Remain Calm - All is Well"

Wow! Loyd Dobbler wants to... (Below threshold)
jim m:

Wow! Loyd Dobbler wants to be a community organizer! What a great choice for a career. For where else can a person do nothing, produce nothing and still claim to be a success?

The Democrat plan sounds pe... (Below threshold)
Jeff Blogworthy:

The Democrat plan sounds perfectly reasonable. It's known as the "squeezing blood out of turnips" plan.

With all due, I think you'r... (Below threshold)
A Reasonable Person:

With all due, I think you're missing the point of both Dobbler and re-training.

Dobbler: it's not that he doesn't want to build anything, it's that he doesn't want to sell, buy, or process things. The joke and his brilliance is in the subtle precision of his language.

In other words, he doesn't want to flip houses or drill for oil to continue down a non-renewable path ... he wants to build quality houses that won't need to be spruced/flipped in place of the processed homes we have now.

He wants to build new ways of moving cars and creating electricity, not simply dig for more oil.

You're right, jobs could be immediately created with deregulation better than with job re-training. Yet the same could be said about lowering the legal working age, on-the-job safety standards, and the like.

Not all regulation is good, but some of it is there for a reason ... and good job-training (not bad, useless job training, which sometimes occurs) is more profitable for a country than simply drilling ourselves out of a hole.


A Reasonable Person






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