Saturday, 15 July 2017

Returning to Full Employment

In 1964 the Australian Government introduced a form of selective conscription as the security situation in South East Asia had deteriorated. They wanted to enlarge the army but the problem was that Australia had Full Employment. That means that hardly anyone was unemployed but today such a thing sounds like fantasy. Unemployment is such an accepted part of modern life that it is hardly even mentioned anymore. But we can return to Full Employment, it disappeared for particular reasons and therefore it can return.

But to do so we need to change the reasons that lead to Mass Unemployment and we can. There are four major reasons that we have Mass Unemployment and two secondary ones.

The four major reasons are:

1. Mass Immigration
2. Women in the Workforce
3. Sending Jobs Overseas
4. Automation

Mass Immigration: After the end of the Second World War the millions of refugees needed to be resettled and Australia like the other Allied nations allowed immigration into the country. Then more were allowed in as the economy expanded and then when the economy stopped growing immigration did not end. Instead from the 1970's onward immigration bore no relationship to how many jobs there were or how well the economy was doing. It became an end in itself with no end in sight. That created competition that simple did not need to exist. Once Mass Immigration stops then so does the competition. I wrote a full article on this, Ending Unemployment and Immigration.

Women in the Workforce: Women have always worked, but today women are encouraged to compete against men. That was not how it worked in the past, back then men had their jobs and women had theirs. Now Governments and large organisations all discriminate in favour of women and therefore against men. They say they are simply correcting an historical wrong, but by their own rules that is ddiscrimination, but as well all know it';s one rule for them and one for us. But there is an economic problems with women taking mens jobs, it means that their are now more people available to do the same jobs. That might be good for companies as they get more choice, but it is bad for everyone else as now there are more people than jobs.

Sending Jobs Overseas: At the same time that competition for jobs has increased tariffs have been abolished. That means that things that once could not be imported or that would be too costly to import now could be imported. So instead of paying high wages they could send those jobs overseas and make more money. Meaning that there are less jobs available.

Automation: I am using a computer to type this out but that same machine has destroyed jobs. Jobs that once required multiple people can now be done with the help of machines. Some jobs can be done entirely by machines. That is only going to get worse not better.

The two secondary reasons are:
1. High Wages
2. Regulations

Both of these make running a business quite expensive, it encourages companies and those who run them to find ways of cutting costs. Most of those costs come at the expense of jobs. In a perverse way these factors make those who have jobs better off and those without jobs worse off. High wages and regulations protect those with jobs but they stop those without jobs from getting a foot in the door.

So what can be done to end Mass Unemployment?

1. Stop immigration, stop the unending competition for jobs. Having Mass Immigration in a time of Mass Unemployment is unethical and immoral.

2. Support young men getting jobs.

3. Support Family, encourage marriage and children. Let us put the family man back upon his throne.

4. Put tariffs back in place with the sole objective of keeping jobs in Australia. I suggest that if unemployment is 5% than we make the tariff 5% if it's 10% then it's 10%.

5. Australian companies should have to pay foreign workers Australian wages whether the job is located in Australia or overseas. Unless the company can justify why they have jobs outside of Australia. If the jobs can be done in Australia then it should be.

6. Machines do not need jobs, men need jobs. The tax system should reward companies that hire workers and that retain them. And it should punish companies that get rid of workers.

7. Make companies responsible for training their own staff and then retaining them.

Australia should exist for the benefit of Australians, the Australian economy should exist to support the Australian worker and his family.

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  1. I do agree with the principles here. Some of the ideas would be better expressed in the form of a basic income, possibly tied to doing some kind of WPA/CCC (US New Deal programs) type work that has a social benefit but without the ability to make profits.

  2. Pond Observer

    A basic income is basically a Government payout, it is in fact the dole. We want men to have jobs, not to get the dole.

    Mark Moncrieff

    1. A "make-work" job, like the Depression era work relief programs, is not the dole. What is popularly called "basic income" is unconditional, but it doesn't have to be. We could have a "job guarantee" that pays out a conditional basic income for those who cannot find work thanks to automation. I don't think it is practicable today, but some have predicted that 80% of the jobs could disappear by 2050.

    2. "A "make-work" job, like the Depression era work relief programs, is not the dole."

      Of course it is!

      The Government is giving you money, the fact that they want you to pretend to work for it doesn't change the fact that it's the dole.

      "Machines do not need jobs, men need jobs"

      A world in which men do not earn money is the beginning of the end for the human race. Women are not attracted to men without status and with no work men will gradually wither away. It is nothing but death. So we cannot live in a world without jobs. If we need to get rid of machines so that men have jobs then that must be done.

      Mark Moncrieff

  3. Economists of more recent times continue to be surprised by the declines in productivity as indicated in the national accounts of developed countries. Whilst there needs to be more research as to the reasons productivity has stalled I will raise a few points I believe are relevant and also mean more opportunities for employment.
    What is oft overlooked is the only way we can advance overall living standards and increase real wages is by way of improvements in productivity. If in a digitized world this is no longer viable then we have to start questioning the very wisdom of the pathway that is before us. Why are we pursuing this ruinous pathway?
    You might say in some respects we are spoilt for choice and drift into arrangements just as fashion dictates what to wear rather than what’s practical or necessary for our existence. In my view possible key drivers which derail the benefits of technology can be summarized as ever increasing amount of re- work, a marked drift away from quality, a far too rapid take up of new technology and technology overload which cancels out its individual benefits. There is plenty of new jobs necessary and begging to be filled for unemployed people to act as gatekeepers and managers in this digitized new world in lieu having to talk to machines.