The bureaucrats at the UN’s International Labor Organization are worried. They say the world’s economies are heading toward a “massive job shortfall.” Who would have thought that if you destroy the incentives to start new businesses and take risks, jobs would go away?
The problem is that bureaucrats have things backwards. They want policies designed to create jobs, as though jobs are manufactured and come stacked up in boxes. That’s insane. Jobs are simply by-products of economic activity. When you restrict economic activity and make it more difficult for people to be productive, you’re going to get less economic activity — which leads to fewer jobs. What’s so hard to understand about that?
People such as the economic illiterates waving their signs about “green jobs” are just as ignorant about this as the government bureaucrats. They all believe the focus should be on jobs, not understanding that the focus has to be on letting people pursue their own self-interest — at which point the jobs will be there.
Here’s something else that bureaucrats and activists don’t understand. Companies don’t want to create jobs. If a company can achieve its goal — to make as much money as it can — without creating any jobs, that’s what it will do. And that’s what a company should do, because a company is in business to make money, not to create jobs. A job is a cost to the business, not a positive thing.
If you want to have the income that it takes to live on, use your brain and discover an economic activity that you can engage in. Don’t wait for a company to give you a job. Don’t want for Barack Obama or any politician to give you a job. And don’t wait for bureaucrats from the UN to give you a job. Use your brain. Figure out what you can do that someone else wants done. If you’re not willing to do that, well, you’re not worth anything to anyone.
Jobs come about when “selfish” people are free to pursue their own “selfish” interests. You don’t “create jobs” by wishing that they existed or by taking more from people with existing wealth. You allow people to pursue their own selfish interests — and jobs happen as a result.