Monday, September 12, 2011

Largest Employers...and their cost

Fascinating chart at the Economist -

"in our chart of the ten biggest global employers, seven are government-run. America's defense department had 3.2m people on its payroll last year, equivalent to 1% of the country's population. China, the world's most populous nation and a big military spender, employs 2.3m people in its armed forces. And the number of people working for the National Health Service in England is equivalent to over 2.5% of the country's population. The three private companies are Walmart, McDonald's and Taiwan's Hon Hai Precision Industry Company, a subsidiary of which is Foxconn, a secretive electronics manufacturer."

And an interesting related piece at Alternet:
Despite Hefty Propaganda Campaign, Maintaining the War Industry Actually Costs America Jobs

"Furthermore, The Associated Press reports that an independent panel investigating U.S. wartime spending estimates that “$60 billion in U.S. funds has been lost to waste and fraud in Iraq and Afghanistan over the past decade through lax oversight of contractors, poor planning and payoffs to warlords and insurgents, as BNF explains on their blog.

According to BNF, at least 193,000 jobs could have been created for that $60 billion in waste, helping to put a dent in high levels of unemployment in the country. BNF cites a 2009 study by Political Economy Research Institute (PERI), which showed that military spending, wasted or not, creates fewer jobs, both directly and indirectly, than every other kind of spending reviewed. Disarming the mythical war-sparks-the-economy argument: war spending makes only a few large corporations rich on the expense of taxpayers."

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