Jobs, jobs, jobs. Differing approaches to jump-starting America's anemic economy and generating some new employment have dominated the debate in Washington: President Barack Obama's jobs bill advocates a mix of infrastructure spending and middle class tax cuts, to be paid for by eliminating tax breaks for the wealthy, while Republicans have defaulted to arguing for limited government and decrying tax increases that destroy jobs, in the words of Speaker of the House John Boehner, R-Ohio.
The Economist has a handy addition to the conversation, having put together a list of the world's 10 biggest employers in 2010. While Obama and Republicans have both talked about revitalizing the private sector, government is still big business -- seven of the world's 10 largest employers are government-run (the fact that four of them are in China complicates things a bit). Here is the list:
1. U.S. Department of Defense: 3.2 million employees
2. Chinese People's Liberation Army: 2.3 million employees
3. Walmart: 2.1 million employees
4. McDonald's: 1.7 million employees
5. China National Petroleum Corporation: 1.7 million employees
6. State Grid Corporation of China: 1.6 million employees
7. National Health Service (England): 1.4 million employees
8. Indian Railways: 1.4 million employees
9. China Post Group: 900,000 employees
10. Hon Hai Precision Industry: 800,000 million employees.