How Do We (Realistically) Fight for America’s Economic Future?
I would strongly recommend that anyone interested in the debate over job creation in America watch the extended Jennifer Granholm interview. The former governor of Michigan has co-authored a book with her husband on the current state of job creation in America. One of the key points seems to be that most state-level efforts are focussing on attracting jobs from other states instead of increasing the overall pool of jobs available to Americans. While that ought to be something handled at the federal level, a clear plan that ropes in the private sector to increase that pool of jobs has yet to emerge from the current administration.
And Singaporeans, I think you’ll find her comments on the Singaporean economic strategy as a contrast quite interesting. She talks about how multinational CEOs across the board agree that Singapore has the best strategy to attract MNCs to the country, and she mentions the “Golden Triangle” of partnership between the government, universities and the private sector. Caveat: ignore the stereotypical ignorant American comment she made about our government: “well that’s a dictatorship so we don’t want that”.
There are a lot of questions that arise immediately and of course a 14 minute interview can’t answer all of them. So I’m looking forward to reading her book – A Governor’s Story: The Fight for Jobs and America’s Economic Future - to get some answers. But off the top of my head:
- Sure, Singapore attracts MNCs, but how much employment does that generate for Singaporeans? With lower tax rates and looser restrictions on hiring than the US, there are several critics who argue that the jobs created in Singapore don’t actually go to Singaporeans but to cheaper white-collar professionals from the region.
- Singapore’s golden triangle partnership, where the government plays a significant role in directing and aiding private sector competitiveness, seems doable with a population of 5 million. How does Michigan’s former governor propose replicating this model with a population of 300 million and coordination across 50 states?
- Given the years and years of a failed educational system in the US with far fewer math and science graduates than is needed to drive industries, where does education reform fit into Granholm’s recommendations for America’s economic future?
- Ditto on healthcare.
Watch the videos and let me know what you think in the comments section (if you think anything at all. It’s a Sunday, I’ll allow for a few minutes of thoughtless existence if you’d like).