Sharron Angle does not believe unemployment insurance helps anyone. In an interview with conservative radio talk show host Heidi Harris (she really does only interview with conservatives, and it really does seem it’s only radio), she raised her game a little from before, where she just claimed that unemployment benefits “spoil” the unemployed:
“People don’t want to be unemployed,” she explained. “They want to have real, full-time, permanent jobs with a future. That’s what they want, and we need to create that climate in Washington, D.C. that encourages businesses to create those full-time, permanent jobs with a future, and all Shelley Berkeley and Harry Reid want to do is put a band-aid on this by extending unemployment, which really doesn’t benefit anyone. What happens is of course that your skills stagnate. You become demoralized yourself, you know, feeling that I can’t ever get a job, and these are not the solutions to the problem. We have real solutions, but they won’t look at the real solutions.”
Well, forget about the fact that almost every economist unanimously thinks that unemployment benefits are a good way to stimulate the economy (in a field where there is almost no unanimity). What I’d love to see is a debate between Angle and Senate candidate from South Carolina Alvin Greene, whose manifesto was recently published by the Guardian (still not sure why it was published by a British paper). Greene, who can’t really seem to speak coherently for a full sentence at times, actually wrote (because I can’t imagine he could pay somebody to write it, and it has his virtual fingerprints all over it) a rousing, populist essay.
He got that half right.
Do any of these fat cats know what it’s like to be unemployed? To not know how you will feed your children and pay your mortgage?
I’m unemployed, and, if elected, I can teach the Harvard rich kids in the White House and the senate a thing or two.
Truth is, there are some good ideas and talking points in this essay, and Democrats could do a lot worse than stealing some of them. For one, banning the selling of debt to collection agencies:
I will stop debt collectors from calling you. I will make it illegal for a company to sell a debt you have for purposes of collection. You and your family have dignity: you are not cattle to be sold back and forth in the debt marketplace. You know how horrible it is to have those vampires calling you, again and again and again.
I can honestly say that’s an idea that could have traction. Yes, I know it would die and probably isn’t even feasible, but it would make a good thing to shout on cable television. There are a lot of people, especially that 9.6 percent that are unemployed, that would love to stop being called and hounded by debt collectors.
He does make a joking stab at the Defense Department (keep in mind the “defence” spelling is due to it being published by a British paper):
The department of defence can’t say where $1tn went. The army can’t locate 56 planes and 32 tanks – how do you lose a plane? Rumour has it, the Pentagon started off as the Hexagon, but one day one of the sides went missing.
And, finally, a parable, which in this era could definitely use some dusting off:
Remember the parable of the unmerciful servant: a servant owed the king a large sum, and the king forgave him his debt. But then the servant went to another man who owed him a small amount. The man couldn’t pay, so the servant had him thrown into prison. When the king found out, he said, “I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?” Then the king had the servant tortured until he paid back all he owed.
Greene may—lack clear speaking abilities—but I’d wager he’d wipe the floor with Angle’s ignorance and lack of humanity any day.