Extended federal unemployment benefits, set to run out June 2, aren't putting people to work. Left unchecked, they "help" those who are gaming the system.
Just ask some Michigan landscapers.
Nurseries have plenty of jobs but can't find workers, The Detroit News reports. Some prospective employees want to put off their start date until their benefits run out. Why get off the government's money train, right• Some insist on being paid in cash.
At $12 an hour on average, the difference in what a landscaper would make working (about $95 more per week after taxes) isn't enough incentive for some to give up the government dole. One former landscaper, unemployed for a year, says he'll look for work just as soon as his benefits expire.
Even he calls the extensions "crazy."
Notes David Littmann, senior economist for the free-market Mackinac Center for Public Policy, those federal checks -- for up to 99 weeks -- don't reduce unemployment but the incentive to find work.
It's no wonder Pennsylvania struggles to maintain its unemployment compensation fund when it's second only to California in what it pays out, according to the Commonwealth Foundation.
In all its incarnations and for all its "good intentions," government's welfare habit too easily becomes a lifeline for the listless.
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments â either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.