Stacy McCain has a really good article on the latest gaffe that proves that Østupid is really stupid, and has no clue about economics (I knew that already since I am a Bachelor of Economics) and especially about employment. The gaffe concerns the matter of ATMs and check-in kiosks at the airports.
ATM technology hit Australia in the early 1980s, and we immediately embraced being able to use the ATM. At the time my mother-in-law, Faye was dying as a result of breast cancer (it was already advanced when she had the mastectomy). We were living in Melbourne and my in-laws lived another 2 hours outside of Sydney at the time. The call came at the weekend, which meant that the access to our money was critical. The ATM certainly helped, as it has done with many families caught in a similar situation. We used the ATM when living in Ohio :). Yeah the drive-in ATM was great!! Then in 2009 on our overseas trip we were able to access our money in the same manner when we were in Vancouver and running short of Canadian dollars.
That being said, I am not addressing the issue from a purely economic point of view, but from the point of view of convenience. Also, something that came to my mind is that rather than cause employees to lose their jobs, more jobs that are less tedious have been created in the banking industry. ATMs usually mean that there is less time spent in a bank queue. It means accessing one’s money when the bank is not opened. It also means that bank employees are used to do those reconciliations of accounts. In other words, the ATMs delivered efficiency dividends to the banks.
However, what was not addressed by Østupid was the real reason for structural unemployment. I would personally point the finger at the demands for higher wages without efficiency gains, plus the introduction of crippling taxes, and of regulations that has killed off industry, thus shifting the jobs overseas. The problem is the shifting of jobs from the USA to places like China. I am not an advocate of tariff protection because tariffs actually work to increase inefficiency in the long term. I would suggest that the real problem are things like EPA regulations that cause electricity and utility prices to rise to the point where American industry is priced out of the market. (this is an non-professional opinion).
So once again, the Affirmative Action POTUS has shown that he is Østupid. And the left criticizes Sarah Palin, when the stole her diary!!