Monbiot is fascinating today. He (rightly) looks at the claims of various investments, plans, schemes and so on as to their job creation.
He finds that such claims are wildly overblown.
But he manages to miss the main point, the important one.
Such job creation claims should be counted as a cost of such schemes, not a benefit. So it is possible to reject the logical basis of the arguments, rather than having to do the detailed research that he had carried out for him.
The 93 stores the forum studied were responsible for the net loss of 25,685 employees: every time a large supermarket opened, 276 people lost their job. This is hardly surprising. The New Economics Foundation has calculated that every £50,000 spent in small local shops creates one job. You must spend £250,000 in superstores for the same result.
Which of course means that supermarkets are five times more efficient in their use of human labour than small local shops are. For every £250 k spent in supermarkets rather than local shops four people are freed to go and do something else: wipe babies\’ bottoms, invent a cure for AIDS or become a human diversity coordinator. As a society we are richer by having those four more things, those four other things other than supplying us with retail goods, done.
Why is this such a tough concept for people to grasp?