Right Thinking From The Left Coast
I do not fear computers. I fear the lack of them - Isaac Asimov

Of Jobs and Spending
by

One of the more egregious examples of Obama’s Merry Bullshit Parade has been his promise last November to save or create 2.5 million jobs with the stimulus plan.  Although there no way to empirically measure if a job has been “saved” by the stimulus, it does provide the President with a ready-made meme to tout whenever he does what he does best--completely make up numbers to suit his needs. (Hal has pointed this out in his healthcare posts)

Well, as Aaron-Free Will’s recent post showed, not only has the stimulus NOT delivered the promised jobs, unemployment has actually risen beyond what the administration projected had the stimulus not passed at all.  Things are grim enough that even the media is calling him on it:

Obama’s aides had mocked reporters for making a fuss over his first 100 days in office, but the president was eager to assess the first 100 days of his $787 billion economic stimulus package.

It has “saved or created nearly 150,000 jobs,” he said, including “jobs building solar panels and wind turbines; making homes and buildings more energy-efficient.”

The White House job claims are difficult to verify because they are based on estimates of how bad the economy might have been without the stimulus rather than actual employment data. The country has lost 1.3 million jobs since February, a figure the Obama administration says would have been far higher if not for the recovery effort.

Notice the rhetorical sleight-of-hand at play here--Obama claimed back in November that the stimulus would “save or create” 2.5 million jobs, and promoted the plan as necessary for stabilizing unemployment long enough for the economy to recover.  The administration notably predicted that unemployment levels would drop to the same level within five years REGARDLESS of whether the stimulus passed or not.  Now Obama is saying that 1.45 million jobs would be lost rather than 1.3 million if the stimulus hadn’t been passed.  Never mind that our friends at Innocent Bystanders have noticed that stimulus spending hasn’t exactly been gushing forth like a geyser and creating jobs.

While this may simply be an example of the President trying to cover up for an economic recovery plan that hasn’t come close so far to delivering what he promised, I’m still holding out on the theory that he’s deliberately holding back a great deal of the spending until next year, when Democrats in Congress will need something tangible to promote in order to justify the trillions of dollars that are supposedly being allocated for this program.  So one is left with either unexcusable incompetence or rank cynicism as the foundation of the plan’s execution.

One little problem--Obama is saying that we are out of money. So where exactly is all this money going to come from to pay for this?

Posted by on 05/28/09 at 10:11 PM (Discuss this in the forums)

Comments


Posted by West Virginia Rebel on 05/29/09 at 05:17 AM from United States

So where exactly is all this money going to come from to pay for this?

Well, Arnold Schwarzenegger wants to borrow money from the cities...but at least he’s actually trying spending cuts at the same time.

What, Obama couldn’t get another loan from the Chinese?

You know things are screwed up when a communist government complains that an American liberal government can’t pay its bills.

Posted by Para on 05/29/09 at 10:06 AM from Germany

So where exactly is all this money going to come from to pay for this?

The greedy rich of course. They are greedy and need to be punished for their greed, while the poor never got a chance, and therefore deserve to be rewarded.

Take from the rich, give to the poor, by any means available, justified by any crisis we can cook up, fear will be our vehicle to salvation boys! From each according to his ability, to each according to his need, and our good people in Washington will be the one’s to make the decisions of who is poor or rich, and who’s need is the neediest.

Right?

This is what all you anti-McCain motherfuckers ignored, but that’s okay, because McCain didn’t subscribe to YOUR exact view of immigration policy, it’s better that we just handed the entire country over to Tinky Holloway, Phillip Reardon, James Taggart and the rest of the Marxists.

Thanks

You know who you are.

Posted by on 05/29/09 at 10:07 AM from United States

I like that line “save or create” jobs.  Originally it was just “create”.  But then he found out that might be objectively measured and found to be categorically false (although few in the media would report it as such), so he added the qualifier “or save”.  So conceivably without the stimulus package millions of jobs may have been lost, and since it’s done you can’t prove otherwise.  Nice.

By that logic using waterboarding saved literally millions of american lives from terrorists because A) we used waterboarding, B) millions of americans were not killed by terrorists while we were doing this and C) you can’t prove otherwise.  Of course had bush tried to make such a claim he would have (and has) been ridiculed and denounced. 

Hope and change!  (and blatant lies/misdirection if that doesn’t pan out)

Posted by on 05/29/09 at 10:23 AM from United States

You are never “out of money” as long as you can print more.  Just ask Zimbabwe....

Posted by JimK on 05/29/09 at 11:18 AM from United States

This is what all you anti-McCain motherfuckers ignored, but that’s okay, because McCain didn’t subscribe to YOUR exact view of immigration policy, it’s better that we just handed the entire country over to Tinky Holloway, Phillip Reardon, James Taggart and the rest of the Marxists.

Well now, hold up there cowboy. :)

McCain is a right fucking bastard on so much more than immigration.  He’s a essentially a Democrat on a lot of issues, and on those issues where he leans right, he does it by holding his nose in the air and insulting everyone with whom he is forced to align.

Maverick?  No.  Contrary narcissist who wants to be loved by his opposites and the press?  Yeah.  AND...he gave us the bloody awful Meghan McCain, who is one of the worst things to happen to the GOP since Bush Sr. talked his way into Barbara’s panties Barbara somewhere in Connecticut in 1945 and produced Dubya. ;)

But I still voted for the sonofabitch. Because the alternative was/is so, so much worse.

Posted by on 05/29/09 at 12:08 PM from United States

The US will continue to issue T-bills.  The Federal Reserve will create money and buy them. The US will also issue a national VAT tax—that is, the national sales tax—and also, don’t forget the “rich” *cough* middle class *cough*.

Para, I love you to death, but no.  John McCain, just like 90% of the republican party is not much better than the alternative—the dense-o-crats.

McCain may not have spent AS much; however, I have little doubt that a McCain presidency would be too much different than the Obama administration we currently see as of now.

Just look at the alternative budget proposed by the republicans.  Was it smaller in size and scope than the budget proposal issued by the democrats?  Yes, but not by much.

In the end, in this country, as of now, you have but one choice in a political party.  That party is the Statist Party.

Thus, like many others, I am a man without a party.

P.S. Para...you should blog here.

Posted by on 05/29/09 at 12:47 PM from United States

Well, Arnold Schwarzenegger wants to borrow money from the cities...but at least he’s actually trying spending cuts at the same time.

I found this article regarding the spending cuts Arnold wants to enact, and this was the money quote, so to speak:

The governor’s cutbacks could include ending the state’s main welfare program for the poor, eliminating health coverage for about 1.5 million poor children, halting cash grants for about 77,000 college students, shortening the school year by seven days, laying off thousands of state workers and teachers, slashing money for state parks and releasing thousands of prisoners before their sentences are finished.

“I understand that these cuts are very painful and they affect real lives,” Schwarzenegger said. “This is the harsh reality and the reality that we face. Sacramento is not Washington - we cannot print our own money. We can only spend what we have.”

The irony, of course, is that the state has spent far beyond what they actually had (being billions in debt as the primary example of this), and now has to make some damn hard decisions as to their economic situation.  The problem is that while everyone wants to see spending cuts, they don’t want them to occur in programs that they support. So Arnold may find himself in the same position as he was in 2005 when he got his ass handed to him by the SEIU and teachers unions--he’ll make all these proposals but nothing substantive will be accomplished, and his popularity will drop even further.

Just look at the alternative budget proposed by the republicans.  Was it smaller in size and scope than the budget proposal issued by the democrats?  Yes, but not by much.

I’ve pointed out before that Walt Minnick of Idaho came out with a stimulus plan that would have cost roughly $175 billion.  A GOP with any semblance of astuteness and competency would have jumped on this, appropriated it, and touted their bipartisan efforts.  Instead, the pork-laden, special interest-currying stimulus bill was passed, and Obama decided he had a mandate to make the free-spending Bush look like Ebenezer Scrooge.

Posted by Para on 05/29/09 at 04:00 PM from Germany

McCain is a right fucking bastard on so much more than immigration

Agreed.

However, WE fucked up. There was a point in this election where the choice was between two people, McCain and Obama. We didn’t choose McCain, the Democrats in New England who voted for him in the primaries chose him to represent the Republicans.

..........and he sucked, and many people decided on the right decided that he sucked so bad that it would be okay to have Obama as President instead of letting McCain be president.

Still, it was a pretty close race. Take away all the right-thinking persons who were convinced from reading RIGHT LEANING BLOGS that McCain was worse than Obama and the election might have gone the other way.

But it didn’t.

And now we have NOTHING standing between us and the full blown disease of Marxism facing us down.

Not for nothing fellas, I’d at least would have liked to have SOMEBODY standing up there TRYING to keep the wolves at bay. We could have had McCain,but no. We have Obama, and he’s got a satchel full of pork chops.

“Here wolfie, wolfie, wolfie”

I am fucking bitter about it. No, McCain wasn’t the best man for the job, but he wasn’t the worst. NOW, we have the worst.

Posted by West Virginia Rebel on 05/29/09 at 05:40 PM from United States

Take away all the right-thinking persons who were convinced from reading RIGHT LEANING BLOGS that McCain was worse than Obama and the election might have gone the other way.

Um, not really. McCain had Bush hanging around him like an albatross; he made so many boneheaded mistakes on the campaign trail (not the least of which was picking the Wingnut from Wasila as his running mate), I think any Democrat with a decent campaign could have beaten him. And no, it wasn’t a close race.

And, I should point out yet again, it wasn’t the Left’s fault that there is no meaningful conservative opposition to Obama now. The Republicans did that all on their own.

There’s a lot to complain about Obama. But whining about how McCain lost, how we would have won if we’d only had a better candidate, or about how it was all the fault of those people who were “Tricked” into not voting for him, that’s Sore Loserman territory.

Posted by on 05/29/09 at 06:58 PM from United States

WVR, he’s elected already. You can stop campaigning for Obama.

Posted by Para on 05/29/09 at 07:29 PM from Germany

Sore loser? I’m not sore, I’m pissed.

I would much rather have McCain right now, even with Palin as his number two ( who I feel is just a jingoistic dimwit) than to watch Obama systematically dismantle our capitalist economy. These new acts being carried out are perhaps the worst threat to our very Liberty this country has ever faced. Obama has bankrupted us for decades, we may never recover, but not from the economic problems, from the racial/class/geographic divisions this new economy will create.

I hold EVERYONE who helped him get elected responsible.

Posted by on 06/01/09 at 08:52 AM from United States

I’ve pointed out before that Walt Minnick of Idaho came out with a stimulus plan that would have cost roughly $175 billion.  A GOP with any semblance of astuteness and competency would have jumped on this, appropriated it, and touted their bipartisan efforts.  Instead, the pork-laden, special interest-currying stimulus bill was passed, and Obama decided he had a mandate to make the free-spending Bush look like Ebenezer Scrooge.

In the context that you operate in, I do agree with you.  I also saw this specific stimulus plan.  However, I spoke of the alternative budget proposal, which, as you should note, was not much better than that of the Obaminable administration.  As for your comment regarding the alternative stimulus plan.  Well, I’ll just phrase this as succinctly as I am able—no, no, no.  Stimulus plans are Keynesian rhetoric that lack fail time and time again.  Yes, in the narrow scope where GDP is calculated using government expenditures as one of the variables totalling the highly misleading statistic, yes, in the short run stimulus plans can grant GDP growth.  However, it’s pointless, it is not sustainable, and it robs the productive private sector. 

I encourage you to read up on the great depression of 1921 to see how governments ought to handle recessions—that is budget cuts, tax cuts, and ultimately nothing.

Outside of that, eliminate all central banks, and return banking to the free-market.

Just because Obama uses stolen taxpayer funds to pay someone to dig a hole does not mean the economy is somehow better off.

Para,

You used the word “jingoistic,” and I love it.  90% of all politicians can easily be classified as jingoistical.

P.S. Ron Paul was the only candidate who actually was worth voting for.  However, the republican political machine crucified him for his dissention regarding Bush and the twin wars that remain nonsensical.

P.P.S.  You have every fucking right to be pissed.  Stay pissed.  Every single American who is having their life, future, and retirement leveraged on behalf of the state should be royally fucking pissed.

Posted by on 06/01/09 at 10:48 AM from United States

I encourage you to read up on the great depression of 1921 to see how governments ought to handle recessions—that is budget cuts, tax cuts, and ultimately nothing.
Outside of that, eliminate all central banks, and return banking to the free-market.
Just because Obama uses stolen taxpayer funds to pay someone to dig a hole does not mean the economy is somehow better off.

Trust me, Seth, I’m well aware of what Harding did to counter the 1921 recession.  I’ve actually mentioned his name several times before in comments as the last President to actually cut government spending. 

I’m in complete agreement with the remedies you outlined in your post, and in a sane world with people who were fiscally responsible, this would have been implemented.

However, the people in charge were bound and determined to pump volumes of funny money into the economy, come hell or high water, and regardless of the long-term consequences to the economic health of the country.  Given the fawning of the press over Obama every time he goes out to get a damn cheeseburger, there was no way they would objectively report on GOP attempts to kill these bills--look how quickly they adopted the meme that the GOP is the “party of NO” and that they “didn’t have a plan,” as if not spending money we don’t have and likely never will wasn’t a good plan to begin with.  Obama had already agitated for an economic “stimulus” package even before the economy took a dump, the collapse just gave him a convenient excuse to do so.

Please don’t take this comment as a rebuke to your assessments.  I’m no more happy about all this spending than anyone else who regularly comments on this board, and I wish it had never come to pass.  At the same time, I think it’s unrealistic to believe that this wasn’t inevitable--although Obama punted the crafting of the bill to Pelosi and Reid, he showed during Annenberg that he has no problem wasting massive amounts of other people’s money.  The best option that the GOP could have realistically done, in my opinion, was to show amenability to the limited stimulus that Minnick proposed, promote spending cuts of their own as an alternative, and then vote against the massive bloated beast that eventually passed.

<< Back to main