stockingfull wrote:What matters is that, if the gov't is going to artificially "stimulate" the economy, by definition we're not talking "meritocracy," we're talking "stimulus."
And the purpose of this or any "stimulus" is to reach the parts of the economy which have been hurt by the downturn and which therefore need to be stimulated. So, if you have information that only "white" or "highly skilled" workers have been affected by the current downturn, then I'd be more receptive to the idea that the stimulus should be directed to them. OTOH, if the downturn is broader than that (which IMO is a pretty safe statement), then the "stimulus" projects ideally should have a broader reach to match it.
The whole idea is that, to the extent possible, you create projects to match the parts of the population that you want to put back to work. Obviously, perfection is unattainable and some people inevitably will get more than their fair share of the dole and others less, but the idea is to put the medicine where the economic problem is, not to establish the same "bidding meritocracy" that you'd want in more desirable economic circumstances.
Stockingfull is right. Nevertheless Reich explained this horribly, he would have been better off with Stockingfull doing the talking. The point here is to create jobs so that people across ALL demographics can get to work and stimulate the economy. What he is saying (very very poorly) is that we need to be creative and think outside of the box regarding the opportunities that are created through the stimulus package. Not just jobs rebuilding bridges (which there are plenty of skilled white male construction workers to fill), but jobs that involve new technologies, green jobs, where there is currently few people with the skills to do the job, but jobs that ANYBODY can quickly get trained up and get out there working. then these folks can start spending and giving back to the economy economically.
Here's Reich's blog: http://robertreich.blogspot.com/2009/01 ... thout.html