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  • About Time: Obama Delivers A Job Plan

    Maybe the best incentive for this president to create jobs, is the fear of losing his own.

    Maybe it’s a start – hopefully – a good one, because the alternatives are too harrowing to consider. President Barack Obama, stood in front of the nation yesterday and finally – and forcefully addressed the issue of job creation. Now the plan is big – could be considered bold, yet still lacks some of the specifics that takes one from an idea to a reality. At least he’s in the country’s moment — finally in the right conversation. Maybe the best incentive for this president to create jobs, is the fear of losing his own.

    Outline of the Plan from Ezra Klein of the Washington Post:

    The proposal itself is called “The American Jobs Act” and amounts to about $450 billion worth of ideas that have, at other times, commanded a bipartisan consensus.

    – It cuts the payroll tax for workers in half, which amounts to a $175 billion tax break, and cuts it in half for businesses until they reach the $5 million mark on their payrolls, at a cost of $65 billion. The idea there is to target the tax cut to struggling small businesses, rather than the cash-rich large businesses. It also extends the credit allowing businesses to expense 100 percent of their investments through 2012, which the White House predicts will cost $5 billion.

    – It offers $35 billion in aid to states and cities to prevent teacher layoffs, and earmarks $25 billion for investments in school infrastructure.

    – It sets aside $50 billion for investments in transportation infrastructure, $15 billion for investments in vacant or foreclosed properties, and $10 billion for an infrastructure bank. It also makes mention of a program to “deploy high-speed wireless services to at least 98 percent of Americans,” but it doesn’t offer many details on that program.

    – It provides $49 billion to extend expanded unemployment insurance benefits. $8 billion for a new tax credit to encourage businesses to hire the long-term unemployed, and $5 billion for a new program aimed at supporting part-time and summer jobs for youth and job training for the unemployed.

    – It also encourages the Federal Housing Finance Authority to make it easier for underwater homeowners to refinance their mortgages.

    If all of that could be spent out in 2012 — a big if, but given the reliance on tax cuts and state and local aid, much of it could certainly hit before the year’s end — it would be bigger, in annual terms, than the Recovery Act. The White House also promises the entire proposal will be paid for, and the specific offsets will be released next week.

    The plan, taken as a whole, attempts to include every single theory of how to address the jobs crisis. If you believe we need more direct spending, you’ve got the infrastructure component. More tax cuts? The plan has $250 billion in tax cuts. More help for the unemployed? Yep. More deficit reduction? Next week, the White House will release a package that offsets this plan and reduces the deficit by more than $1.5 trillion on top of that.

    Watch the Video

    Good luck.

    Calvin Wilson
    Founder and CEO
    Upstart: Business and Management for 20-40 Year Old Professionals

    Filed Under: Gamechangers


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