The Trough

When we think about supply and demand we tend to think demand drives supply, but it can go both ways. Sometimes, if you create a supply, demand will follow. Think of high fructose corn syrup. The supply was created and now there is a demand.

I believe public policy often gets caught in this trap. We legislators try to do the right thing and create a supply of support for people struggling or needing a hand, and then it becomes a supply of “entitlement.”

In the Commerce and Human Resources Committee the director of the State Unemployment Insurance Fund brought us a bill trying to solve a situation. Ponder this: From 2007 to 2009 corporate officers for businesses paid $5.8 million into the Unemployment Insurance fund and took out $42 million in benefits.

These are usually small companies where the “corporate officers” may be the only employees. When I showed this to my attaché, he laughed. “My friend does that. He has a landscaping business he owns. He lays himself off every winter and gets unemployment.”

I want to promote personal responsibility in every endeavor. But that does not mean I don’t think people need help. It is all about balance. So now we are working on a law to address this problem. I have already gotten two emails opposed. And it has not even reached the floor. Maybe this is why folks want to starve the beast. They do not trust us to do the right thing. I believe we can.

Thank you for comments. I read them all but do not post them.

About ddxdx

A Family physician, former county coroner and former Idaho State Senator
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