Time to stop paying people to stay home (Opinion)
It's one thing to help people in need. It's another to incentivize people to stay in need because they've become dependent on government payments. Driving around New Jersey this week, it's clear we have a problem.
More jobs available than people willing to take them. I get it, if the government is going to extend unemployment and add stimulus money to the amount, why would you go to work to potentially make less? Knowing this fact, nearly half of the states are stopping the extra payments. Some even offering an incentive to take the next job.
The sad reality is that big government advocates like Murphy and Biden have no concept of the long-term ill effects of social engineering. They believe that the additional payouts will "force" companies to pay more for workers, which is their back-handed way of raising the minimum wage.
The flaw in this thinking, of course, is eventually the bill comes due. Employers will find a way around this; hiring illegals, paying cash off the books or moving to other states. This is rapidly becoming a Jersey problem as the ignorant politicians in Trenton think that they will never run out of other peoples money.
Ask the wealthy, who have taken up official residences in Pennsylvania and Florida, how that works. Even before the lockdowns, nearly half of the state's residents say they are planning to move out in the next five years. And over a 12 year period from 2004-2016, $25 billion in taxable income left the state.
Here's the pull quote from my friends at the New Jersey Business and Industry Association from 2019:
"According to a survey by Fairleigh Dickinson University and the Garden State Initiative, 44% of New Jersey residents are planning to leave the state in the not so distant future with more than 1 in 4 (28%) planning to depart the Garden State within five years."
Unsurprisingly, property taxes and the overall cost of living were cited as the main reasons.
“These results should alarm every elected official and policymaker in New Jersey,” Regina Egea, President of the Garden State Initiative (GSI), said.
"NJBIA is concerned about outmigration because when people leave the state, they often take their wealth with them. NJBIA sounded the alarm over outmigration of wealth several years ago," Steve Wilson of the NJBIA said. "Using the latest available data on federal tax returns, NJBIA has calculated that nearly $25 billion in wealth has left New Jersey along with the individuals and businesses that have relocated between 2004 and 2016."
Remember that in America people have choices and as the economist Milton Friedman famously discussed, people vote with their feet. It seems in New Jersey, voter turnout is at record highs.
The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Bill Spadea. Any opinions expressed are Bill's own. Bill Spadea is on the air weekdays from 6 to 10 a.m., talkin’ Jersey, taking your calls at 1-800-283-1015.