Wayne Brown is right on! A no-growth economy, government regulation, paper work, potential liabilities, and the difficulty of firing an employee all contribute to the problem.
As Wayne Says, "Jobs exist for ... a business need for them." Very few companies are growing, a source of employment. There are few new starts because of tight credit and incredible regulations. The rate of retirement is slowing because senior employees are unsure of the future economy and want to work as long as possible. With nearly $4 a gallon gasoline on the horizon and no one knowing how high it will go, the price of everything from corn, dairy products, plastics, and anything trucked to the consumer will rise. The bank bailout did nothing to fix the housing market (should the money have gone to homeowners instead?). Even the talk of eliminating the home mortgage interest tax credit hurts an already devastated market. The uncertain housing market and underwater mortages restrict mobility and shrink the potential geographical area for a job seeker. Combined, these factors also inhibit spending which perpetuates the problem.
Nothing the Federal Government has done lately addresses any of these problems. The Federal misdirection of aid and a basic lack of understanding of the needs of business are the root causes of the high and continuing employment problems in America. Reduce regulation, loosen credit, help the homeowner, cut the Federal budget, and don't lay the cost of health care on the small businessman or individual. You would see almost immediate results.