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Spin This, Democrats: " $787 Billion in Stimulus, Zero Jobs 'Created or Saved' "

Original post made by Ruth, Another Pleasanton neighborhood, on Jan 18, 2010

Morning Bell: $787 Billion in Stimulus, Zero Jobs “Created or Saved”

Web Link

On February 11th, President Barack Obama stood on a windy hilltop in front of a dusty construction site in Fairfax County, Virginia, and promised the American people: “Here in Virginia, my plan will create or save almost 100,000 jobs, doing work at sites just like this one.” Standing alongside current Democratic National Committee Chairman and former-Gov. Tim Kaine, the President continued: “Where we’re standing, that could mean hundreds of construction jobs. And the benefits of jobs we create directly will multiply across the economy.” Eleven months later, none of those promised jobs have been “created or saved.” In fact, the Obama administration quietly announced last week that they were dropping the fraudulent “saved or created” terminology altogether.

The failure of Obama’s $787 billion stimulus is particularly acute in Virginia where, as Heritage fellow Ron Utt has documented, despite $695 million in allocated infrastructure funding, only 16% of designated projects had begun. House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman James Oberstar (D-MN) even publicly complained about Virginia’s slow transportation spending, writing to Gov. Kaine: “your state ranks last among all states [51 out of 51, including the District of Columbia], based on an analysis of the percentage of Recovery Act highway formula funds put out to bid, under contract and under way.”

But even where infrastructure spending has been spent, the hard evidence shows that there has not been any positive effect on unemployment. According to an Associated Press analysis reviewed by independent economists at five universities, the $20 billion spent nationwide on infrastructure so far “has had no effect on local unemployment rates.” And this was just the most recent embarrassing headline for the White House’s signature economic policy. Since the first reporting deadline in October, newspapers and other media outlets across the country have identified 94,341 fake jobs reported by the Obama administration as jobs “created or saved” by the stimulus. After the Government Accountability Office issued a report finding “significant reporting and processing problems that need to be addressed,” Obama administration spokesman Ed Pound offered this defense of the Obama administration’s jobs numbers: “Who knows, man, who really knows.”

Now Office of Management and Budget Director Peter Orszag issued a little-noticed memo last month ending the “saved or created” metric and instead directing agencies to count only jobs “funded” by stimulus dollars. But as Harvard University labor economist Lawrence Katz tells ProPublica, this is not really an improvement: “I just think it’s a silly exercise.” Instead Katz says a more accurate way to account for the effect of the stimulus is to look at the unemployment numbers put out by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

That is a great idea. The latest BLS report issued last Friday found that the U.S. economy dropped 85,000 jobs in December, bringing the jobs lost total to 2.7 million since the stimulus was passed and 3.4 million since Obama became President. In contrast, the President’s White House Council of Economic Advisers had promised total employment of at least 138.6 million by 2010. Actual employment as of December was reported to be 130.9 million, leaving the Obama jobs deficit at 7.7 million.

The problem with infrastructure spending as stimulus, and really government spending as stimulus, is that Congress does not have a vault of money waiting to be distributed. Every dollar Congress injects into the economy must first be taxed or borrowed out of the economy. No new spending power is created. It is merely redistributed from one group of people to another. Businesses are telling pollsters that among the biggest reasons they are not creating jobs is the prospect of new tax and regulatory burdens. A better solution to reduce unemployment is to simplify and reduce the barriers to business success.

Comments (17)

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Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Jan 18, 2010 at 11:21 am

i'll get back to you later...

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Posted by dublinmike
a resident of Dublin
on Jan 18, 2010 at 8:39 pm

dublinmike is a registered user.

Ruth, I will give you more creditability when you stop the mindless copy & paste from the Heritage Foundation. I might as well drink Kool-Aid and listen to Limbaugh. Or,I might as well listen or read exclusively to Huffington.

Original thought is a good idea but even if you have to quote from other sources it's still a significant improvement. Live beyond the narrow.

BTW, did you hear that Limbaugh does not want you to contribute to Haiti even if President Bush is associated with the charity? Weird.

Like this comment
Posted by Ruth
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jan 18, 2010 at 10:54 pm

Clean the earwax out of your ears once in a while. Or, are you waiting for your government to do it for you? Limbaugh did not say do not contribute to Haiti. He encouraged people not to contribute thru the Fed's whitehouse. gov site. He encouraged people to contribute to Haiti thru more efficient and reliable organizations like the Red Cross and others. You moron.

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Posted by jeff H.
a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Jan 19, 2010 at 8:29 am

Geez Ruth, Let's all go back to the fine leadership of the previous 8 years. I personally think both Parties are crooks - but to think this Administration was handed off (one year ago) a fine tuned economic machine is truly Kool Aid drinking material.

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Posted by ToJeff H
a resident of Deer Oaks/Twelve Oaks
on Jan 19, 2010 at 9:13 am

The Democrat congress created the problem. It is a fact.

Feel sorry for the Democrat party.

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Posted by Don't Waste Your Time
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jan 19, 2010 at 9:46 am

Don't waste your time responding to Ruth, or whatever name s/he is going by these days. Same person, same Heritage Foundation cut and paste, same bait to then insult you for disagreeing. Ruth, or whatever name s/he is going by these days, does daily hit pieces on Obama and the Democrats. Too much time on his or her hands, if you ask me.
Here is Rush's EXACT transcript, where actually does suggest that people shouldn't contribute to relief efforts in Haiti, because "Besides, we've already donated to Haiti. It's called the US income tax." Please, read the whole thing. He implies a bunch of typical Limbaugh BS with nothing to back it up. Even disproves his own theories at the end.
Ruth, or whatever name s/he is going by these days, shouldn't be so quick to call other people "moron..."
Web Link

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Posted by Janna
a resident of Dublin
on Jan 19, 2010 at 10:01 am


Had you and Rush looked, you would've seen that there is a Red Cross link on the WH website. You'd rather just believe the worst apparently.

I'm sure you and Rush are just groovy with the credit card companies taking 3% of all money donated. Got to capitalize on other people's tragedy whenever possible.

I'm surprised you like Rush. He's a drug addict with an affinity for little Dominican Republic boys.

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Posted by jimf01
a resident of another community
on Jan 19, 2010 at 10:33 am

jimf01 is a registered user.

OK, I read the transcript. Still looking for where Rush says don't make a donation?
I can see where he agrees with a caller to go directly to the Red Cross.
I can also see where the FIRST comment he makes about donations is the president "asks people who have lost their jobs because of his policies to donate to to the people of Haiti, and we will do it. We are the most charitable and the most generous people on the face of the earth. Each and every time a natural disaster like this happens, we step up. We are there. "Despite the fact we're experiencing tough times here at home, I would encourage those Americans who want to support the urgent humanitarian effort --"

I can also see where Janna is worried about credit card companies getting a cut, but I googled "haiti donation credit card" and saw this article:Web Link says in part "Rogers (Canadian cel phone provider) waived its normal text message fee to ensure 100 per cent of the donations made through its charity of choice,...Visa Canada and MasterCard Canada confirmed they are not charging their usual "interchange" fee on donations to specified charitable organizations."

and this article Web Link says: "American Express and Visa on Thursday waived transaction fees for donations made via their credit cards to quake-hit Haiti amid criticism over profits by banks and credit card firms on contributions." In addition, the companies are donating hundreds of thousands of dollars to the effort.

If you would like to continue taking any more false cheap shots, fire away. I am waiting.

Like this comment
Posted by Don't Waste Your Time
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jan 19, 2010 at 11:20 am

The first quote you listed doesn't show Rush encouraging people to donate to the Haiti relief effort, and the second is actually Rush quoting Obama. So, whatever you were trying to show there didn't work out so well.
Here are a few choice quotes from the transcript, actual Limbaugh quotes -
"Now, I want you to remember, it took him three days to respond to the Christmas Day Fruit of Kaboom Bomber, three days. And when he came out after those three days, he was clearly irritated that he had to do it. He didn't want to do it. He comes out here in less than 24 hours to speak about Haiti."
"Oh, this is what he lives for. He lives for serving those in misery. Now, don't misunderstand here, folks. I don't have the whole press conference, but I wonder did he apologize for America before acknowledging we are the only people on earth that can possibly help 'em out down there in any significant way? "
"That place, Haiti, has been run by dictators and communists, and how long is it going to be before we hear Obama and the left in this country say that what we really need to do is reinstate the communist Aristide to the leadership position down there to coordinate putting the country back together? The Haitian economy is entirely dependent on foreign aid. They produce nothing. Zilch, zero, nada.
(Hi, it's me. For your edification, please see Web Link
Just so you notice, aid is actually 5.1% of the GDP. Which means they produce something more than nothing, zilch, zero, OR nada.)
" won't be long before somebody in the Obama administration suggests that we reinstate, reinstall Aristide, because there's sympathy with these kind of people. So we'll keep a sharp eye on this, but I'm just fascinated here the country the president of the United States feels the need to apologize for, the country the president of the United States feels is immoral and unjust, can barely contain himself running to the cameras in less than 24 hours after this earthquake to pledge aid and to ask citizens who have lost their jobs because of his policies to donate to the relief effort."
"Yes, I think in the Haiti earthquake, ladies and gentlemen -- in the words of Rahm Emanuel -- we have another crisis simply too good to waste. This will play right into Obama's hands. He's humanitarian, compassionate. They'll use this to burnish their, shall we say, "credibility" with the black community -- in the both light-skinned and dark-skinned black community in this country. It's made-to-order for them. That's why he couldn't wait to get out there, could not wait to get out there."
Of course, Rahm Emanuel's comments were not made regarding this situation or meant at all in this context, but whatever, Rush can just throw it out there and people with a chip on their shoulder can shout "Yeah! Yeah!"
"Would you trust that your name is going to end up on a mailing list for the Obama people to start asking you for campaign donations for him and other causes." More Rush BS, because it's just a link. He later goes on the complain the WH doesn't offer enought direction.
I won't even go post the parts about the peace prize money or the brother in a hut, because they are so disgusting.
I see a whole lot of BS trying to stir people up! Typical Limbaugh BS.

Like this comment
Posted by jimf01
a resident of another community
on Jan 19, 2010 at 11:58 am

jimf01 is a registered user.

Call it BS if you like, but the evidence on the ground shows the reality of life in Haiti. Look at the before pictures in the earthquake slideshows. Poorest country in the Western hemisphere. The presidential palace (when it stood) made the White House look like a hovel, where many of the residents of Haiti live in actual hovels. 50% of the population lives on less than $2 a day.
So, yeah, ok, not nothing. NEXT to nothing. Oh boy, you got him there.

It is unfortunate that we have Obama in the WH as this tragedy strikes. A Bush admin would already have the CIA in there working to install a puppet government and promoting democracy and freedom. Instead, we are just going to keep shoveling cash into a campfire, all we will get is more ashes and smoke.

Heh heh, fruit of the kaboom, I liked that line.

Like this comment
Posted by Don't Waste Your Time
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jan 19, 2010 at 12:18 pm

Jim, my intention wasn't to "get him there." My intention was to point out that he said they are "entirely dependent" on foreign aid, when aid is actually 5.1% of the GDP.
As far as Bush v. Obama strategy, I'm sure you didn't miss your buddy's assurances that Obama is going to rush to reinstate a Communist dictator to the Haitian government, so you don't have to worry about the ashes and smoke.
I can tell you are a Rush fan, as you have adopted his sarcastic tone. Congratulations on being able to maintain your sense of scorn and sarcasm in the face of tragedy.

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Posted by jeff H.
a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Jan 19, 2010 at 12:43 pm

Mr/Ms Deer Oak Oaks/Twelve Oaks Residents, My sincere thanks for your 3 sentence reply and clearing up who's fault it is.
I guess that's it. I'll contact CNN/Fox and the other news outlets to pass along your scoop.

Like this comment
Posted by jimf01
a resident of another community
on Jan 19, 2010 at 1:06 pm

jimf01 is a registered user.

DWYT, do you want me to C&P your sarcasm & scorn? If you are trying to make me feel guilty about Haiti, then dwyt. I am pretty sure I have donated more to Haiti relief than you.
It is only sarcasm when it isn't true. The country was a wreck before the earthquake. The proper moves now could actually make things better there in the long term. I don't think the Obama administration will make the necessary moves.
Janna - the Red Cross link was apparently temporary. Now the primary link is to the Bush-Clinton-Obama relief fund. Great, our last three white house administrations who have accomplished pretty much zero in Haiti are now gonna take more of our money and make things all better there.
Clinton already mad the problem worse by flying down and taking up space on the runway. He could fly to DR or Jamaica or the USS Carl Vinson and copter in. His landing there hindered efforts.

Like this comment
Posted by Don't Waste Your Time
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jan 19, 2010 at 2:39 pm

Look, more Limbaughesque tactics: "I am pretty sure I have donated more to Haiti relief than you."
I'm going to try to take the high road here and say that I'm glad that apparently we've BOTH donated to support victims of the earthquake in Haiti. I hope they get the help they need, and that some fundamental improvements can be made in the process. That we're arguing about this on a blog while people are actually suffering physically and emotionally to that degree is silliness.

Like this comment
Posted by Sandy
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jan 19, 2010 at 4:52 pm

Whether you choose to donate to Haiti is a personal choice. Do not feel guilty if you don't because the taxes you pay help pay for disasters such as these. The USA has given Haiti over 2 million dollars since the early 1990's and 2 trillion since the 1960's. I believe we should help in the rescue, but I do not believe it is our job to rebuild. What have they done with all of the money we gave them? Is there that much corruption?
I am very disappointed in Obama. All he does is spend. And I don't like the idea of our government having so much control. I will NOT be voting for him next time, big mistake!!!!!

Like this comment
Posted by Sandy
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jan 19, 2010 at 4:55 pm

Sorry, I meant over 2 billion dollars, not 2 million!!!!

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Posted by Jerry
a resident of Oak Hill
on Jan 20, 2010 at 1:54 am

An ex-politician from Haiti was quoted in the newspaper saying Poppa Doc and Little Doc made off with approximately 800 and 600 million bucks, respectively, when they were chased out of Haiti...

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