Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Obama's Economic Numbers Just Don't Add Up

Sometimes magic tricks just aren’t that great, and even the most innocent, wide-eyed child can’t be fooled by the illusionist’s flourish. Such is the case with the rabbit the White House is trying to pull out of its magic hat by claiming that President Barack Obama’s stimulus has created or saved 2.4 million jobs at a cost of $666 billion, all while the United States continues to suffer 9.1 percent unemployment. If you do the math, that comes out to around $278,000 per job.

That information comes from a White House Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) report released last Friday that desperately tries to maintain the illusion that Obama’s stimulus has saved the day for struggling Americans.

If you take the CEA at its word, you might be a bit confused. Two quarters ago, it claimed that the stimulus added or saved just under 2.7 million jobs. That’s 288,000 more jobs than it claims the stimulus has created or saved today. (The Congressional Budget Office has downgraded its claim of the stimulus’ “success,” too.) Compare that to the President’s promise to create 3.5 million jobs by 2010—the economy, instead, lost millions of jobs, leaving Obama 7.3 million jobs short of his goal...

The facts are these: Last month, the average length of unemployment stood at 39.7 weeks, the longest since the Department of Labor began tracking it. The unemployment rate increased from 9.0 to 9.1 percent, 13.9 million Americans are unemployed, the economy added only 54,000 jobs, and the labor force participation rate remained flat at 64.2 percent, an all-time low for the fifth straight month.

According to yesterday’s Wall Street Journal, “the economy’s improvement since the recession’s end in June 2009 has been the worst, or one of the worst, since the government started tracking these trends after World War II.” And things aren’t getting better anytime soon. In short, the stimulus did not work. Jobs were lost, not created, and the economy is suffering the effects...

 Here's the rest of Mike Brownfield's column over at The Heritage Foundation.