The Job Guarantee: Design, Jobs, and Implementation
Levy Economics Institute, Bard College
This paper offers an opposite mode of thinking about the system of providing a living to the U.S. working class. If the wage-labor system, the “job market,” cannot provide a living to our people, then there is a Job Guarantee to rely upon instead.
The question “how will you pay for all of this” is answered in an opposite way from the dominant mental model that economists are using, and which is indoctrinated into the Congress of the United States, under the terminology of “pay-as-you-go,” or “pay-go.”
The “pay-go” concept emerged from the 1980s era of large tax cuts on the beneficiaries of growing income inequality, which quickly led to large federal budget deficits. The pay-go adherents in the Congress seized upon the growing deficit as a rationale for disallowing any growth in spending on social welfare benefits. If an increase in social welfare is proposed, the story goes, then some other part of the budget must be cut, or the benefit must be “paid for.”
The Job Guarantee is based upon an opposing set of policy called “Modern Monetary Theory.” There is not room to elaborate what Modern Monetary Theory or “MMT” is all about in a short blog page introducing the Job Guarantee, so we suggest you spend some time researching what MMT is all about, in addition to considering the Job Guarantee Paper stored on this blog.
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