It would be nice if the Obama administration got its narrative straight. Christine Romer, the chair of Obama’s Council of Economic Advisers, says that the stimulus pretty much had all the effect it’s going to have. And while she’s saying that, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner is proclaiming that the stimulus was designed with a two-year horizon and that “half that effect is still ahead of us.” Maybe they could get together and cook their story.
It wouldn’t hurt if the White House got its basic facts straight, while they were at it.
From the AP, in an article entitled, “Stimulus Watch: Stimulus Jobs Overstated In Report”:
WASHINGTON – The White House is promising that new figures being released Friday will be a more accurate showing of progress in President Barack Obama’s economic recovery plan. It aggressively defended an earlier, faulty count that overstated by thousands the jobs created or saved so far.
Ed DeSeve, serving as Obama’s stimulus overseer, said the administration has been working for weeks to correct mistakes in early counts that identified more than 30,000 jobs paid for with stimulus money. He said a new stimulus report Friday should correct many mistakes an Associated Press review found that showed the earlier report overstated thousands of stimulus jobs.
“I think you’ll see a pretty good degree of accuracy,” DeSeve said in an interview.
White House spokesman Robert Gibbs downplayed errors in job counts identified by the AP’s review, telling reporters, “We’re talking about 4,000, or a 5,000 error.”
The AP reviewed a sample of federal contracts, not all 9,000 reported to date, and discovered errors in one in six jobs credited to the $787 billion stimulus program — or 5,000 of the 30,000 jobs claimed so far.
Even in its limited review, the AP found job counts that were more than 10 times as high as the actual number of paid positions; jobs credited to the stimulus program that were counted two and sometimes more than four times; and other jobs that were credited to stimulus spending when none was produced.
• Some recipients of stimulus money used the cash to give existing employees pay raises, but each reported saving dozens of jobs with the money, including one Florida day care that claimed 129 jobs saved.
• A Texas contractor whose business kept 22 employees to handle stimulus contracts saw its job count inflated to 88 because the same workers were counted four times.
• The water department in Palm Beach County, Fla., hired 57 meter readers, customer service representatives and other positions to handle two water projects. But their total job count was incorrectly doubled to 114.
Those errors were included in an early progress report on the stimulus released two weeks ago that featured numerous mistakes, including a Colorado business’ claim that its stimulus contract created more than 4,200 jobs. TeleTech Government Solutions actually hired 4,231 temporary workers for its stimulus project, but most of them worked for five weeks or less and the others no more than five months, company president Mariano Tan said.
The short-term positions should have been reported as 635 full-time, 40-hour-a-week jobs under the government’s method of calculating stimulus work, Tan said.
Now, first of all, stop and contemplate the farce that is going on here. We have lost 3 million jobs since Obama bluffed and pandered his generational theft act through Congress. And they are touting 30,000 jobs as a success? I mean, 30,000 jobs created or saved is a massive failure on its face. And then it turns out that even many of those 30,000 jobs are bogus.
Obama promised his Wreckovery Act would create 3 million new jobs. The fact that he now has to play games to create the illusion that he “saved” or created a minuscule 30 thousand jobs is a screaming testimony to what a failure Obama has truly been.
The White House, according to media reports, is blasting the Associated Press for exposing this new Obama administration fabrication. I guess they’re not a “legitimate news agency,” either.
The Obama administration has been pumping sunshine (a polite synonym for “lying”) practically since the day their porkulus generational theft act was passed back in February. That was when Obama officials falsely promised the country that they would be able to keep unemployment below 8% if we gave them their stimulus. Even liberals are increasingly acknowledging that Obama has been a total bust at job creation.
Obama now has a documented history of fallacious expectations and highly selective cherry-picking of “facts”. It is par for the course for a president who only knows how to campaign, rather than to lead or to actually solve problems.
The reality is that the European leaders who predicted government stimulus would fail to improve the economy were right, and Obama was wrong. There is a clear correlation between stimulus money and unemployment, but it isn’t the kind of correlation Obama wanted: the more spending by government, the higher the unemployment rate.
We’re told that the economy grew by an annual rate of 3.5% last quarter, and that this signals the recession may be over. But there’s a little factoid that needs to be understood, namely:
Economists forecast the nation’s total output grew at an annual rate of 3.3 percent between July and September, after contracting for a record four straight quarters. That growth has been fueled by a huge influx of government cash, including a temporary tax credit for first-time homeowners and a $1.25 trillion Federal Reserve program to keep mortgage rates low.
In other words, the GDP grew, my hind end. Rather, the government spent a ton of money, the result of which was to artificially pump up the economy. It’s the equivalent of borrowing a ton of money you don’t have to buy a car you can’t afford in order to impress your neighbors. Only it’s Obama instead of you, and it’s trillions of dollars rather than thousands.
As a result of this fraud, the administration can pump up a number. But the reality is very different. Consumer confidence “unexpectedly” dropped in October just as we’re entering the critical Holiday shopping season, meaning the American people aren’t falling for the ruse. And new home sales took an “unexpected” dump into the toilet to throw a bucketful of cold water into the face of anyone naive enough to buy the myth that we’re going to rise above our housing market woes.
As a result of too many partisan political shenanigans over too long a time, most Americans – by a solid 52% to 36% majority – believe that Obama has the country on the wrong track.
I would submit that a little more honesty, and a lot less bullpuckey, would go a long way.