So what do you all think about the $787 billion stimulus package? Has it been a success or not? Beltway Joe Biden Thursday came down firmly in the camp of those who aver that it has, saying “the fact is the Recovery Act [the official name for the stimulus] is working.” Well, Joe is entitled to his own opinion, but he’s not entitled to his own facts.
Fact number one is that, although Biden stated that “the Recovery Act is responsible for somewhere between 2.3 million and 2.8 million jobs that were either saved or created,” the Bureau of Labor Statistics thinks otherwise. According to the BLS, the unemployment rate is virtually unchanged over the last six months, and indeed it’s not changed appreciably over the last year, after rising sharply beginning right after the election of Biden’s boss to the Presidency.
In spite of this obvious disconnect from the facts, Biden goes on to say that “the stimulus is creating several hundred thousand jobs a month the last several months.” Well, gee, that’s not exactly true, either. Once again, the BLS provides the actual truth – fact number two – which is that the stimulus is creating few or no net new jobs. Last month, for example, the number of jobs grew by 431,000, but 411,000 of those were temporary jobs with the census bureau funded by the taxpayer. Now, the census is a good, constitutional duty of the federal government, necessary for proper representation in this democratic republic of ours, but it’s hardly the answer to unemployment. Most years it’s conducted, in fact, retirees looking to work for a little while to earn some extra spending money do the enumeration.
The real fact is that the most effective way to stimulate the economy is by cutting both government spending and taxes and allowing consumers to drive a recovery. All this insane government spending is going to accomplish, in the long run, is to dramatically increase inflation, possibly to levels not seen since 1980, when the Carter Administration oversaw inflation approaching 15% (and unemployment of around 10%, by the way.) It hasn’t happened yet only because the recession has dampened demand and therefore consumer spending, but once the economy returns to full production, rampant inflation is inevitable.
Don’t, however, expect either Biden or his boss to understand this. They and their followers are true believers in the power of government to do good. The only possible answer is to defeat their followers who are running for office, which means here in Pennsylvania, we need to beat Joe Sestak.
Don’t fail to turn out in November to vote for Pat Toomey. Our country’s future depends on it.