A Good Jobs-Policy Idea Could Be Worth $15,000

The Brooking Institution’s Hamilton Project has announced a competition to “identify new and innovative thinking about policies to create jobs in the United States and enhance productivity.” The contest winner will receive a $15,000 prize, while the runners-up will share $10,000. “The competition is open to academic, business and policy professionals who can demonstrate an original policy solution for increasing employment and productivity within two years of its implementation. The winning proposals will be evidence-based and also take into account the economic reality of federal and state budget constraints. They should also identify likely political constraints.” Hey, it worked for space travel, although the stakes were a bit higher. [%comments]

Steve in Pittsburgh

WPA - but that is the easy part.

The idea isn't the problem. Getting the pro-corporate, right-wing, white house to open a history book and find the letters WPA is the problem that deserves a large cash prize.


Forgive all student loans...

Eric Swisher

Oh, sure. Save the Country for a lousy $15,000? I can save the country. But I want MORE. I'm holding out. Sorry folks.


Why isn't it open to ANYONE who can demonstrate an original policy solution?

Mary K O'Brien

Germany is evidently hiring!!!

Eric M. Jones

Start a war.

It always worked in the past. Just crank up some bogus indignity and have the PsyOps folks figure out a false-flag operation to get everyone excited.

Too bad we can't use, "--They're TORTURING our soldiers." Because we're the only ones doing that.

How about, "the enemy is killing our children."...err...no, we do that.

How about, "Foreign invaders are bespoiling our women?" Maybe not....

We'll figure out something, even if we have to "rescue" some American medical students.


I'm sensing a disenfranchised populace here...


Simple. Repeal minimum wage laws. Oh, wait, it said something about likely political constraints. Oops!

Scott Braden

"original policy solution"

- Bollocks to that. There are plenty of tried and proven solutions, how about we grab a couple of those and spend the $15k on beer?

Freezing to death at 29 deg

Stop paying $300,000 to the Brookings Institution to come up with a paltry $15,000 prize to solve a billion dollar question.


@freezing and @Eric Swisher: Thank you. Are you kidding me? 15K?

Andreas Moser

Don't prop up banks any more.
If savings won't be save, people will spend their money quicker.


Give our kids an education that will prepare them for a high-tech economy. There are plenty of high-tech jobs and not enough skilled workers to fill them.


3 things got us in this mess
1) the Dollar and our standard of living is high, therefore our workers want more money/protections than poor folks in 3rd world
2) (most) Corporations are duty-bound to maximize profit at any social cost that they can "get away with"
3) Corporations may source labor on the international market without paying the social cost to their host countries.

So unless we lower our standard of living, redefine the concept of a corporation to include social obligations and stakeholder (employee) obligations, or prevent corporations from using international labor by tariffs or other methods, jobs will continue to be an issue.

We must forget this "free market uber alles" ideal and face the reality that free market fails to serve a social good more often than any economist would like to admit, and that free markets on a complex world stage (flat earth) present externalities with unintended consequences.

My policy: in collusion with Europe and other "first world socially stable economies" place a tariff on all international parts and labor from any country that does not have comparable worker protection laws and social justice. That would slow down china and much of india.

When it costs as much to make a widget or answer a tech-support call in China as it does in the USA, then market forces will decide, but until then, because of other countries' lower standard of living, they can afford to provide labor more cheaply than the US, and corporations have no choice but to outsource jobs.