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September 04, 2011


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"Ought" Powerful words...but is anyone really listening? I hope that this is not seen as a "Jabberwocky" moment....


Kudos, dear Kurt, on this last blog of yours. Please send it to Pres. Obama immediately. I don't know what he has in mind but I say you hit everything in the right places.
Let's hope he does.


I can't believe it. Are people really that shortsighted, or are too scared to face reality?

Please don't get discouraged by a few idiots. Keep up your wonderful work.


The speech you suggest in your "weekly" would have been fine if the President had delivered it a year or so ago. Back then people were not yet aware of his lack of spine. Unfortunately, I think he's still seeking some sort of reasonable response and compromise.

What the country needs now is a Roosevelt fireside type chat spiced with Truman combativeness. What we don't need is a display of Republican disdain for the President and his office. This is what I fear any address Mr. Obama makes will generate.


lliant! If only.........


We need that manufacturing--from it springs exports and the building of a surplus. The skilled machinist in Toledo, Detroit or Hammond earning $50 an hour with benefits, who could save to send his children to college, is no more. He is lucky to earn $15, if there is work for him at all. The division between have and have nots widens every day. Its sad, and our government has no answers. Obama, our leader, delivered a Labor Day speech, still laced with jabs at the opposition, on the eve of perhaps his most important economic talk to the nation, which may very well decide his presidency. He has been unable to stay above the fray, separate himself from the community organizer he was, and provide insightful, follow through leadership. Very sad indeed.


What an amazing ought to speech! I only wish that he would give this to the country.You got it right. I pray that others will feel the same way also


I am sure that Obama's speech wont create jobs, so he might as well put yours on the teleprompter!


I hope he does...another great and thoughtful article


Beautifully crafted, hitting many of the basic points which trouble us all, however, if I'm going to spend all this money, some of it should go toward incentives for business to create jobs which produce something, which can be sold abroad, something with sales of a repetitive nature, that has some permanency. What you suggest is admirable, but infrastructure projects may keep Caterpillar and cement manufacturers , busy for a while; however,these endeavors are users of money, and do not create lasting recurring long term wealth, or cause us to be more competitive with the rest of the world. In a couple of years, the government will be deeper in debt, a few corporations will have more in the bank, some workers will have been able to purchase another large screen TV, but basically we will be back where we began


KOL HAKAVOD! Why don't you send this to President Obama? I am serious.


my friend kurt, my observations as to your suggested dialogue to and with the electorate. you know, i'm older than you (69 here), and age triumphs over smarts---here. if you literally mean this should be obama's words, my reaction:

1. your choice of words is far toooo sophisticated for the middle class if defined by education. the average joe will be lost on an island as to the message you intend to deliver.

2. most voters at walmart feel that obama is far too professorial, and out of touch with the real world. your speech will add to this notion. obama is eloquent.i love to listen to his style. he MUST become a communicator to the public. ronald had far less brain power, but he knew how to bring the masses along. this has been an obama failing!

3. even though the line jobs have been lost to china, india, etc., now is not the time politically to bring this fact up. to do so will tell the average worker he has no hope to earn a living for his family. if obama takes hope away from the shrinking middle class, forget re election.
the problem with "shovel ready" jobs is that a 50 yr old person who has worked at a desk or on the line or where ever can't at this time in his/her life be made into a construction worker. this is a panic situation, and obama must show leadership suggesting that a bread winner can once again support his family.
4. we know that congress is counter productive. if obama uses this reality as an excuse for our stumbling economy, he "says" to the people, "i can not lead!" he is the leader, and like in sports, the manager/coach is fired first.

i could say more, but you get my drift. the one thing going for obama, and this is becoming more fragile each day, is that his like ability rating is fairly high, but on a down hill slope. his election theme, "yes we can", rings hollow. he uplifted so many during his campaign, but that was a "century" ago. many influential african americans feel he's failed their segment of society.

now with all of the above said, i admit i'm at a loss for words. that don't much happen. truth is, i'm not sure he has a way out as far as this speech goes. if he plays the blame game or if he fails to really restore hope with a plane of action, or if he reinforces the notion that he can not lead, he has a real problem from this speech forth.

this is not to be said or intimated, but his ace in the hole is the candidate that opposes him. the republicans have big time tsuris for now.

i suggest you rethink his speech or pass off to the washington crowd.


Nice speech. But, please stick with religion and philosophy - obviously your basic business acumen relating to numbers needs my tutoring.

If you add up the total jobs that you describe in Rep. Schatkowski's plan - it's only 1,640,000 jobs. Close to 2 million but just off by 360,000 - either way - it's still crazy.

Crazy because neither Rep. Schatkowski nor you have factored in, for example with the not so ready "Shovel Ready" infrastructure programs, the cost of materials (ie: Steel, concrete, sand, vehicles, gas, etc.), nor have you factored in the administrative costs (ie: overhead, rent, insurance, etc.) for those programs. Plus the additional Federal oversight inspectors and their overhead costs. Materials, admin cost, inspectors, etc., etc., will easily be 50% of the 100 billion. If you divide the remaining $50 billion by the 2 million jobs you have an average gross yearly income per job of $25,000.00.

That would be $12 per hour and I didn't factor in any cost overruns, corruption, and political favors. And that is just a one year of another "Stimu-Less" Plan!

Therefore, any federal jobs program would really require a minimum of double that amount = $200 billion to provide an average salary of $40,000 (using 40% material costs, 10% admin costs, & 10% "miscellaneous" costs) for each of the 2 million jobs. So in order to have any "long term" benefits 2 yrs is not enough - lets say its a 3 year program, and now you are adding almost another 2/3 trillion to the national debt. How did you say this was being funded? Did I hear "Shared sacrifice" ?

Most projections indicate that the 9.1% unemployment will remain for another year or two. Adding 2 million jobs will reduce that one year from now by maybe 1% but it would add an enormous federal tax burden on the top 50% of the working adults who pay 98% of all federal taxes. Remember this is a Federal program and the bottom 50% of the working population only pay 2% of the Federal income taxes. No body is even talking about the state & local taxes.

In 2008 the IRS reported:
1) Those nasty jet owning millionaires amount to just 1% of the working population (1.4 million people earning $400,000 & up & up some more) and they pay 38% of the Fed. Income Tax revenues.
2) The next 4% earn btwn $160,000 & $400,000 and they pay 20% of the total Federal Income tax.
3) Then the real middle class totaling 45% of the working population earn btwn 34,000 & 160,000 and they pay 43% of the Fed. income revenues.

A. The top 1% = 1,400,000 people each pay an average of $688,571.00 = 964,000,000,000.00

B. The next 4% = 5,600,000 people each pay an average of $89,692.00 = 502,276,000,000.00

C. The next 45% = 60,200,000 people each pay an average of $18,283.00 = 1,100,660,000,000.00

D. The bottom 50% = 72, 000,000 people each pay an average of $7.13 = 504,000,000.00

E. Total estimated receipts (Shared Sacrifice) approximately 2,567,000,000,000.00

F. Total Federal outlays (3,834,000,000,000.00)

G. The IRS says there will be a Deficit that is estimated to be . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1,267,000,000,000.00 That's ONE TRILLION TWO HUNDRED SIXTY SEVEN BILLION USD.

H. Lets not raise the debt limit again and lets balance the budget by taxing the top 1% for 60% & the next 4% for the other 40% of the shortfall:
1. 1,400,000 people pay an extra $543,000.00 = $760,200,000,000.00

2. 5,600,000 people pay an extra $90,500.00 = $506,800,000,000.00

I. Oops - that doesn't work because there is another 14 trillion in Federal debt and we just added a new Stimu-Less program that adds 2/3 trillion per year. How will we pay that?

J. Lets just tax those Jet owning top 5% again.

K. Double Oops - sorry sorry - they just jumped in their Jets and flew to Bimini, or Switzerland, or St. Kitts, or anywhere else in the world where their entrepreneurial spirit will be admired & respected.

What, pray tell, will all of you do when Dagny, Hank, Franscisco, and the rest of us - all end up in Galt's Gulch? Hhmmmmmm?

Warren Weinstein

Not satisfied with this first draft. Much too conservative. 2 million jobs is a drop in the bucket. What about the other 14 million unemployed?

Alan Weiss

Above all, we need people working.

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