“This is like deja vu all over again.” Yogi Berra was correct. “When you come to the fork in the road, take it.” Good idea. Seems that, rather than a fork in the road, we’ve got massive speed bumps. Who actually cares about more jobs for American workers, anyway? Is the hubbub just another rerun of the smoke and mirrors gig? I’m beginning to think so. Rather than being a low-information-voter, I think that I’ve been way-too naive. I actually believed that the movers and shakers in the business, economic and political world were actually searching for ways to put more Americans back to work. I think I’ve been duped. Most don’t give a rat’s ass about the situation.
If the politicians were dedicated to ‘job creation’ then why does the unemployment rate continue to rise? Remember the GOP 2010 election theme? JOBS! JOBS! JOBS! Who besides me fell for that? And how does John Boehner still talk about ‘job creation’ with a straight face? Or, does he put job creation in the same category as ‘creationism’? You know- Faith.
“Amen! We believe!”
Say, what about the Democrats? Where are their ‘jobs bills’?
‘But wait!,’ a faithful Democrat might answer, “Remember, we passed the largest stimulus package in history. So there.”
Indeed you did, but what did it stimulate? Where was the jobs-component? Or is that begging the question?
It is clear that the Republican Plan is AWOL. The cheer leaders showed, but the team never got to the field.
The Democratic Plan was a bust. Strikingly shocking is this bit of data from Wikipedia: According to a March 2009 Industry Survey of and by the National Association of Business Economists [NABE], 70.6% of their economists who had reviewed the fiscal stimulus enacted in February 2009 projected it would have modest to strong impact in shortening the recession, with 29.4% anticipating little or no impact. Seven of ten economists were wrong.
And we naive citizens wonder why things aren’t working so smoothly…
Perhaps the next line from that article is even more revealing: The aspects of the stimulus expected by the NABE to have the greatest effectiveness were physical infrastructure, unemployment benefits expansion, and personal tax-rate cuts.
Gulp. Huh? What the…?
Excuse me, but which of these three elements was the jobs-creator?
It goes on- One year after the stimulus, several independent macroeconomic firms including Moody’s and IHS Global Insight estimated that the stimulus saved or created 1.6 to 1.8 million jobs and forecasted a total impact of 2.5 million jobs saved by the time the stimulus is completed. The Congressional Budget Office considered these estimates conservative. The CBO estimated according to its model 2.1 million jobs saved in the last quarter of 2009, boosting the economy by up to 3.5 percent and lowering the unemployment rate by up to 2.1 percent. The CBO projected that the package would have an even greater impact in 2010.
Well, that didn’t work out too very well, now did it?
But wait! There’s more- The CBO also revised its assessment of the long-term impact of the bill. After 2014, the stimulus is estimated to decrease output by zero to 0.2%. The stimulus is not expected to have a negative impact on employment in any period of time.
WTF! “The stimulus is estimated to decrease output by zero…not expected to have a negative impact on employment.”
WTF! But, I repeat myself.
So then, the effect of a stimulus program on job creation is ZERO?
Perhaps the GOP ‘plan’ was the better of the two in the long run. At least “faith and hope” didn’t add to the debt.
I’d like to amend Yogi Berra’s famous line to this: When you come to the fork in the road make a u-turn.
Maybe even more wise was Yogi’s caution, “If you don’t know where you are going, you will wind up somewhere else.”