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Letters: Government vs. economic growth

February 09, 2013

Re "Smart spending isn't," Opinion, Feb. 5

Mostly I disagreed with former GOP Rep. Ron Paul, but he was right when he consistently pointed out that what the government subsidizes increases in price. And that, whether we like it or not, is "growth."

But Jonah Goldberg was right on the money when he wrote about increased education spending to prop up the economy. Government needs to throw money at infrastructure and at disaster relief, but how many more unemployed college graduates do we need before we realize that education needs to smarten up?

Bring back apprenticeships and customize education to what employers need versus what educators think is important. There is a shortage of skilled workers with good technical and management knowledge, and the education system needs to partner with industry to bridge that gap.

Jennifer A. Zaft

Huntington Beach

Goldberg used the federal government report that the country's gross domestic product shrank by about a 0.1% annual rate last quarter to show that increased spending by President Obama has failed as an economic stimulant.

In reality, the GDP report was good in that it showed that private demand grew at a 3.3% annual rate and government spending fell at a 6.6% rate, mostly because of the timing of defense purchases and Republican cutbacks on government jobs at the state level.

Goldberg distorted the report to advance his right-wing dystopian viewpoint at the expense of the truth.

Andy Serrano

Los Angeles

Education spending isn't a driver of growth? Aren't business leaders crying over the state of public education because they can't grow their companies thanks to a system that doesn't produce enough high school graduates capable of doing basic math?

Please tell me again: How is it that education doesn't encourage productivity?

Jim Peterson

Beaumont

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