Friday, March 6, 2015

Gobs O' Jobs!

At PBS Newshour's MAKING SEN$E, John Komlos claims "America can be a full-employment economy once again":
Currently, adjustments to the decline in demand for labor occur by reducing the number employed so that their labor time falls abruptly from 40 hours to zero. Employees work 40 hours, 20 hours or not at all. Would anyone “behind a veil of ignorance” design such a rigid system from scratch, a system with so much uncertainty and volatility–with working times ranging from zero to 70 hours per week even in normal times? 
It would be much more palatable to have the adjustment occur in the number of hours worked so that instead of dismissing workers, the available work would be divided among those wanting to work BECAUSE THERE IS A FIXED AMOUNT OF WORK TO BE DONE! Hence, an institution that distributes work more evenly would be a reasonable solution to this quandary.
I have, of course, added emphasis to the words "because there is a fixed amount of work to be done." I also added the words themselves because they were inadvertently omitted from the original. This is standard economic science procedure. Economists have been making this mind-reading correction for decades. Nobody objects. If you can't beat them, join them.

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