Alexandria-Ocasio Cortez (AOC), a well-known Democratic House Representative from New York, has recently endorsed a plan to create guaranteed government union jobs.
Along with Democratic Senator Ed Markey from Massachusetts, AOC pledged for the new legislation that would enable the employment of young people as members of the so-called Civilian Climate Corps.
One of the main goals of the program is to employ young people to fight the challenges surrounding the climate crisis.
Around 1.5 million young people are estimated to receive jobs in Civilian Climate Corps.
Creating the Civilian Climate Corps
AOC’s and Markey’s program presents a modern version of Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s Civilian Conservation Corps, which the former U.S. President introduced as a part of his New Deal.
Both plans had the employment of young people as their main objective.
However, while the Civilian Climate Corps would tackle the climate crisis, the goal of Roosevelt’s Civilian Conservation Corps was to take care of various sorts of public goods.
It involved 3 million young men who were employed to plant trees, build trails that constitute American National Parks and fight forest fires that frequently rose across the U.S.
Criticism of the program
Much of the criticism against the Civilian Climate Corps plan resembles the one previously put forward against Roosevelt’s program.
The critics, such as the researchers from the Cato Institute, noted that Roosevelt’s policies, such as the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), spoiled more land than it managed to protect.
The researchers pointed out that the navigation TVA promoted included a lot of coal.
They added that people who received TVA-subsidized electricity failed to reach an equal position with their neighbors who obtained electricity by other means.
The Cato researchers concluded that Roosevelt’s program failed to have a significant positive effect on the Great Depression, eventually ending up as a bureaucratic organization evading both private and public controls.
A lot of people are worried that Civilian Climate Corps might suffer from a similar fate.
Others have different concerns.
Mark Paul, an economics professor from the New College of Florida, warned that the proposed $10 billion budget might be too low to employ 1.5 million people.
According to Paul’s estimates, this figure would be sufficient to cover only between 150,000 and 200,000 people.