Where are the jobs? Stimulus has done little besides benefit bureaucrats
There are not too many people who really thought that the $787 million spent as part of the stimulus package was really going to save the American economy and hundreds of thousands of jobs.
It just did not seem logical.
And, sure enough, now that the numbers are starting to come in, there are many, many people who are questioning just exactly what the stimulus did accomplish -- especially since the Obama administration and those charged with providing the analysis of the program cannot seem to come up with legitimate numbers of jobs saved by the investment.
In fact, in recent weeks, media outlets and others have been poring through the listing of what the stimulus has accomplished, only to find some outrageous claims. One of the most famous is the riding lawnmower purchased to mow a cemetery in Arkansas that saved or created 50 jobs.
Really? They actually thought they were going to get that past anyone?
The problem with the stimulus package is exactly what its critics predicted. It has done little to affect unemployment in this country, but has provided huge amounts of government spending. So, bureaucracies might have benefited, but the unemployment rate remains scary and still not stabilized.
So what is the truth about job creation?
What does this country need to do to turn around the cuts, closures and increasing rolls of unemployed Americans?
Simple. Improve the business climate.
OK, so it really isn't THAT simple.
But the reality is, if businesses are doing well and Americans are confident that they are going to have a job to make their mortgage payment, there will be more people hired and more businesses expanding instead of holding steady.
That is how you put more people to work.
How to accomplish that is another question, but taking more money out of businesses' pockets and putting taxpayers more in debt is not the way to go -- even if some bureaucrats and politicians claim they have the statistics to prove otherwise.
Now is the time to listen to government officials with an eye for baloney.
There will be all kinds of claims made about the effect of the stimulus package and calls for the next step -- which is a phrase that should scare anyone who still has a wallet with some money in it.
Question what you hear and demand more than just rhetoric and sound bites from those who are charged with representing you in Congress.
Now is the time for citizens to insist on knowing how their money is being spent and if it is being used efficiently.
Because if someone doesn't speak up, there won't be anyone with any money anymore.
Except, of course, for the government.
Published in Editorials on November 19, 2009 10:48 AM