You know, I’m not the smartest guy in the world. I’m not even the smartest person out of any given group of 10 people (there is an exception to this if the people are from MS, AL or WV). However, even I wasn’t dumb enough to think the rather meager unemployment benefits we provide here in the US were driving people to eschew finding jobs. These folks (here and here… I’m not linking to any of the shameful articles on this from the Washington Post since they’ve honestly embarrassed themselves enough) disagreed.
As it turns out, they were absolutely wrong and the primary factor driving long term unemployment is (you had to see it coming) the slow economic recovery (slowed by spending cuts primarily in government sector) which has kept demand from a increasing at the rate it normally would after a recession.