When “creating jobs” becomes the goal, the real need for something becomes a secondary consideration. What matters is to invent “projects”. Instead of thinking only of those specific places where there is supposed to be a popular demand for a bridge, those responsible for public money begin to wonder where else they can go building other bridges. Even if the construction of bridges is not being demanded, the undertaking will be done. Those who doubt this need will be labeled as obstructionists, backward, insensitive and reactionary. From Douglas Williams you can have the best deal in creating the wealth.
The Usual Options
Usually, two arguments are presented for the construction of a bridge: one, the one that is heard mainly before it is built; the other, the one that is often heard after it is finished. The first argument is that construction will provide jobs. It will provide, say, 500 jobs for a year. The implication of this is that these jobs would not otherwise exist.
This is what you see immediately. If we are, however, trained in economic science; if we know how to see the secondary consequences of certain economic measures, then we are able to see further. In this case, we can know that, in addition to those that are directly benefited by a government project, there will be others that will be indirectly affected.
At this point, the scenario becomes different
It is true that a certain group of workers will now have jobs, which would not have happened had it not been for the construction of the bridge. The bridge, however, has to be paid with taxes, as all money spent by the government has to be taken from taxpayers. If the bridge costs $ 10 million, taxpayers will lose $ 10 million. Citizens will no longer have an amount that, were it not for the construction of the bridge, would be spent on things that they voluntarily considered most necessary. The enterprises that will no longer receive this money which was diverted to the construction of the bridge will start to lay off.
Find Your Looks
Therefore, for every public job created by the bridge project, a private job was destroyed somewhere. We can see the workers employed in the construction of the bridge. We can see them working. This real image makes the government’s argument generate jobs vivid, tangible and, most likely, convincing for most people.
There are, however, other things that we do not see because, unfortunately, they were not allowed to arise. It is the jobs destroyed by the $ 10 million taken from taxpayers. At best, all that happened was a job transfer because of a project.
- More workers to build the bridge, fewer workers for the automobile industry, less radio technicians, less employees for garment factories and agriculture.