Senator Bill Nelson of Florida has been pushing the Interior Department to enact regulatory curbs on the importation of Burmese pythons into the United States. Apparently they’ve been infesting the Everglades and doing a great deal of damage. And according to the House GOP, this sort of thing is exactly why unemployment rate is over 9 percent:
But in a report released Wednesday, Republicans on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee denounced the proposed rule as part of the Obama administration’s “regulatory tsunami.” They said the snake ban could “devastate a small but thriving sector of the economy.”
I, personally, am an invasive species sympathizer (who are we, humans, if not the ultimate invasive species?) so I see where the critics are coming from, but this highlights precisely how petty and absurd efforts to tackle mass unemployment purely on the supply side are going to be. We don’t need four jobs selling snakes somewhere. We need millions and millions of jobs. We need well over a million new jobs per year just to keep up with the growing population rate. To get the employment-population ratio back up to its late ’90s peak would require hundreds of thousands of jobs per month for years. Snake imports aren’t going to cut it. Trade deals with tiny countries like Panama aren’t going to cut it. Picking nits about where Boeing does and doesn’t open factories isn’t going to cut it. The United States of America is a gigantic country with a gigantic economy and a gigantic labor force and a gigantic problem of joblessness. You need to move it with big levers. Snake-led growth doesn’t cut it.