Why does Ed Miliband feel the need to accompany the proposal to guarantee a six-month job to under-25s who've been out of work for a year or more with a lost benefit threat?
What message does that send to young jobless? Doesn't it tell them that they are seen as a problem and that this is their last chance?
Many young people already feel alienated, having left school prepared to embark on a working life only to experience rejection caused by mass unemployment.
They are victims in the story of capitalist system failure but are made to feel guilty too often for their inability to find work.
Politicians' obsession with tackling jobless statistics rather than unemployment itself means that the young employed are lectured constantly about how to enhance their employability as not having a job is their own fault.
Even a brief period signing on will convince them that, with 40 or 50 people applying for every job vacancy, their chances of striking lucky are not bright. It does not take long for disappointment to give way to disillusion and fatalist acceptance that this is their life, denied the right to earn their own living and prepare for their future, including family responsibilities.
The Labour leader should look back to his party's publicity prior to the 1945 election when soldiers were returning from the world war to the labour market. There were fears of a return to the mass unemployment of the 1930s, but Labour proclaimed a goal of full employment along with a welfare state safety net for periods of hardship and crisis.
Those postwar social gains, together with the inauguration of the NHS, remain as a beacon of social democratic achievement.
Yet the parliamentary elite, backed up by the billionaire media, is intent on unravelling these successes by rolling out the buzz words of "reform" and "modernisation" to dismantle that postwar welfare framework.
We expect no better from the Tories and their Liberal Democrat Orange Book ideological confreres, who always opposed an economic role for the state other than channelling taxation into private-sector subsidies.
But even the party that delivered the welfare state and NHS is not immune to the modernisation fetish that views claimants as needing a jolt out of their jobless complacency.
Labour and Tories try to outdo each other in getting over the idea that the most effective way out of poverty is through work, as though this truism may not have suggested itself to those without a job. The overwhelming majority of the unemployed want a job and to take responsibility for themselves and those closest to them.
But reducing current obscene jobless levels substantially will not be attained by getting claimants to produce better CVs or by threatening those offered six-month temporary employment with loss of benefit if they don't measure up, get sacked or refuse this "opportunity." It requires a government-directed and funded project to boost employment through support for essential infrastructure and manufacturing projects.
Conservatives and their media allies will rail against this state involvement in the economy as much as they did against the Attlee government reforms, but it is the minimum required for a new political and economic direction.