Jobs and Economic Growth

  • Reinvest in public employees, such as teachers, police officers, and firefighters.
  • Invest in green technologies to become the national capital of solar production.
  • Protect the middle class from monied interests.

There is no magic economy fixing pill. The economy is a complex thing. Our economy is currently on a path to recovery; however, it needs assistance in order for us to truly prosper as a nation and relieve the burden that many of us still feel from the 2008 financial crisis. During a recession, people spend less money. Due to the lack of money being spent by people, companies have less money to reinvest in hiring more employees and expanding their businesses. One option is for the government to step in and try to help stimulate demand in the economy by hiring back laid off workers.

When the budget is tight, education funding is usually one of the first things on the chopping block. That is unacceptable. The money we spend on schools comes back tenfold when these children – our children, go on to become the future leaders of America thanks to the solid educational foundation that was built. By hiring back thousands of displaced workers, whether it be teachers that were laid off, firemen or police officers that no longer patrol our streets due to budgetary constraint, or even more construction workers to update our highways to fit the modern traffic needs of the growing metropolitan area or build low cost housing to improve the lives of the impoverished, we directly contribute to the growth of our local economies and reduce unemployment through job growth. These low cost programs benefit Arizona in the long term due to residual tax revenue as well as increased spending in the local economy.

Along with investments in solar production that promise Arizona to be on a path to become the national leader in solar technology by 2020, we need to foster a business friendly environment that promotes economic interest in investing in Arizona. We need to capitalize on our greatest asset, our direct line of sunlight 94% of the year along with our vast swaths of land.

In order to fix the economy at large, though, we need to address the fundamental issue: Corporate greed. The middle class must be protected from monied interests that seek to harm it for their own gains. When national politicians say that the middle class is the backbone of the economy, they say that because the middle class is the group that spends the largest amount of money in the consumer economy. We must be proactive with businesses and ensure that employers fairly employ legal employees and do not foster an environment that creates the demand for illegal immigration. Along with that, we must ensure that we raise the minimum wage so that every Arizonan has the ability to have a fair, livable wage.

Arizona has been one of the states hit hardest by the recession, losing 10% of our jobs with a current unemployment rate of 8.6% as of March 2012. Isn’t it time that we tried to use new ideas to tackle the same problems, rather than the same ideas that got us into this situation?