Quite interesting to read the news out today and the predictably stupid and vain responses from MP's.
The news I refer too is the predictions for half a million jobs ro so to go this quarter as the furlough scheme ends. Labour of course want the scheme extended and improve upon - with more free money to pretend to keep people employed and also permanent schemes to help sectors of the economy that need it, in their view.
The Government too has its kickstarter scheme and some others, but in the round is interfering a bit less and looking at the costs a bit more.
The Government is better here, although now is probably the time to look at the benefits system in the round and move to something more on the Swiss model. In Switzerland the Government pay you for up to a year after redundancy 80% of your wages until you find a new job - very generous indeed.
In the UK this could be a lower amount but with a credit towards re-training, which is desperately needed.
Keir Starmer's usual vacuous soundbite is to help sectors that need support like retail and airlines. How is this of any use? We will need a lot less airline capacity for many years to come and already need far fewer shops than we used to. Plus retail is unskilled work anyway, those people in retail need some skills that maybe useful to help them earn a better living, otherwise they are going to be unemployed a long time.
Quite the worst thing to do at the moment is to try to resurrect the old economy. 10 years of cultural transformation has happened in 6 months. Offices won't be the same, working from home will be more normal and online purchasing even more of a trend. Plus staycations and home improvements. These changes are schumpeterian ones, the chaos of the recession and pandemic. Really they should be embraced to channel the changes we need into progress rather than fought against like the closure of the mining pits etc a generation ago that achieved nothing.
Both left and right now agree with analysis that it would be have been better to close the pits and try to retrain everybody with genuine new skills rather than leave them to fester in long-term unemployment.
So maybe let's not do that again, for example technology means we need less retail workers but far more logistics workers, why not prepare the workforce for the economy now emerging rather than the one the sun has set on?