Here's my advice to President Obama on how to solve the unemployment problem. He can use it for free, although it'd be nice to see a little attribution:
Here's the plan: Hire the unemployed as teacher assistants in our public schools. One per classroom, maybe a few extra to help the maintenance staff. Pay them minimum wage, give them free breakfast and lunch and daycare if they have little kids. Let the principals and teachers decide how best to use them -- an extra hand to handle larger classes, extra talent to help reinstate cut programs (music, phys ed, etc.), whatever. Leave the implementation up to the schools, leave the funding to the Feds. It'll cost a little bit, but we're already so much in debt, who'll notice?
Whatever the cost, it's a great investment. Beleaguered schools and teachers get much-needed assistance. Kids get more attention and a better education. Unemployed adults get short-term employment and cash in their pockets. And maybe, just maybe, we inspire some of these short-term teaching assistants to become teachers themselves, which wouldn't be a bad thing. Everybody wins.
If you like this idea, pass it along.