Jobs “saved or created” from $787 billion Porkulus: 30,083

posted at 12:10 pm on October 16, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

We’ve long criticized the Obama administration measure of jobs “saved or created” by their economic policies as ridiculously ambiguous.  That seemed confirmed when the White House announced last month that a million jobs had been “saved or created” by the stimulus package, without any supporting data.  This week, the administration finally supplied the data, and the number came to less than 1/30th of their September claim:

The first direct stimulus reports showed that stimulus contracts saved or created just 30,083 jobs, prompting more Republican criticism of the $787 billion package.

The data posted Thursday was the result of the government’s initial attempt at counting actual stimulus jobs. Obama administration officials stressed that data was partial — it represented just $16 billion out of the $339 billion awarded — but they said it exceeded their projections.

“All signs — from private estimates to this fragmentary data — point to the conclusion that the Recovery Act did indeed create or save about 1 million jobs in its first seven months, a much needed lift in a very difficult period for our economy,” said Jared Bernstein, the chief economist for Vice President Joe Biden.

Well, which $16 billion are we talking about?  And where did the rest of the $339 billion, almost half of the Porkulus appropriation, go?  Why didn’t the administration show that information to make the argument that the other $329 billion had the exact same effect as the $16 billion it highlighted in its initial report?

At the rate shown by this report, this comes to almost $532,000 per job “saved or created”.  Extrapolating that over the entirety of the Porkulus spending, the bill would only “save or create” 1.48 million jobs, and that assumes that it actually did “save or create” those jobs in the first place.

Now, let’s assume for the sake of argument that the jobs we “saved or created” pay the national average salary of $50,000 and are permanently saved or created, a very generous assumption consider the kind of temporary hiring that we have seen from this effort.  If each of these jobs paid an effective federal income tax rate of 15%, it would take over 70 years for them to pay back the money we spent on Porkulus, and that doesn’t count the interest we will pay on those funds.  At a 20% effective tax rate, it would take over 53 years.

And all of that assumes that the program works exactly as the adminstration claims.  On that score, I’ll let Ken Spain have the last word:

“Despite numerous promises from Congressional Democrats, there are still 15.1 million Americans out of work,” said Ken Spain, spokesman for the National Republican Congressional Committee. “After wasting taxpayer dollars to produce an unimpressive 397 jobs in Michigan, middle-class families are still asking one thing: Where are the jobs?”

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The best way to stimulate the economy is to actually cut taxes and reduce the size of government. You don’t think any of the government employees would start new businesses? Potential is being wasted right now.

Libertarian Joseph on October 17, 2009 at 9:57 AM

At least lorien understands the lie. You seem to be incapable of even grasping it.

crr6 on October 16, 2009 at 1:11 PM

Lie is an interesting word choice. People who lie usually don’t follow it up with a detailed post showcasing their “lie” for you. I’d say the headline was inaccurate because it did imply that the entire stimulus bill created only 30,000+ jobs, but I don’t see any intent to lie. If there was, a detailed description of the job estimates in relation to the stimulus money spent would not have followed. In Catholic terms, Ed’s sin (if it is a sin) is venial, not mortal.

But what else does crr6 have to work with? He’s an Obama boot licker and so he has to come up with something to attack Ed on. He certainly can’t defend Bambi and the porkulus package, so he’s left with arguing over the wording of the article’s headline. It’s pretty sad, but the life of a troll is not an easy one.

PackerBronco on October 17, 2009 at 10:41 AM

That’s only about $26 million per job.

You know about the two arkies that bought a truck load of watermelons in Arkansas for two dollars a piece and brought them to Oklahoma and sold them for a dollar a piece. As they were counting their money, one said we did good, now all we need is a bigger truck.

Now, all Obama needs is a trillion dollar stimulus and he can save another 40,000 jobs (probably at Acorn).

Old Country Boy on October 17, 2009 at 11:46 AM

RagTag on October 16, 2009 at 1:18 PM

Good luck to you RagTag.

yoda on October 17, 2009 at 3:27 PM

I find it interesting to compare the cost to the taxpayer of each of these stimulus jobs to the cost of the taxpayer for each job created by offshore drilling. ANWR drilling for example is said by some to be capable of creating 750,000 jobs. Cost to the taxpayer: ZERO

DarkKnight3565 on October 17, 2009 at 7:22 PM

What do you expect from the Flim-flam in Chief?
They’ve thrown money at it (their constituent base), and will now wait ’til just before the elections, and throw more money in the same direction, thereby buying the votes they want. It won’t create any more jobs, but the money will grease the palms of the voters they want.
Flim-flam 101, folks.

Cybergeezer on October 18, 2009 at 9:59 AM

Wow. My UE benefits ran out earlier this year but in the mail yesterday I received a package that said I was qualified for a two week benefit extension. I wonder how much tax money was spent to extend me that 2 weeks.

RagTag on October 18, 2009 at 10:28 AM

Using 2000 figures, the GNP of the USA is 10.533 trillion.

If we only create 30,083 jobs by spending 787 Billion, then by continuing this ‘stimulus’ tactic we will only be able to support 382,249 jobs by spending our entire GNP (at which point we would all be slaves to Chinese masters).

Since the Labor Department reported that 263,000 jobs were lost in just September 2009, it appears that we’re losing 8.7 jobs for every claimed “job saved” EVERY MONTH!!!

This is completely INSANE!!! It is crystal clear that the present effort to “save or create jobs” is wildly counterproductive. ‘Porkulus’ (falsely named ‘stimulus’) should be cancelled IMMEDIATELY in order to protect our money, the jobs which have not already been destroyed, and our national security.

landlines on October 19, 2009 at 2:29 AM

If they had just paid those 30,083 people $60,000 a year for 30 years to sit on their asses at home, it would have only come to $54,149,400. Fifty four million sounds like a bargain to me.

darwin-t on October 19, 2009 at 8:19 AM

And while the Administration trumpets their own glory, the EU steals our next breakfast, lunch and dinner:

The goes on to say that there are 3 other free-trade pacts that Teh One is dithering on as well.

Anyone who thinks Teh One wants to ‘bring the economy back’ is a deluded fool.

CPT. Charles on October 19, 2009 at 10:24 AM

Government monopolization of currency is an interference in the free market in itself. I think that we should legalize competing currencies, or else the people WILL bear the full pain of a weakening USD.

Libertarian Joseph on October 19, 2009 at 10:24 AM

When govt ‘creates’ jobs, it is always at the expense of the taxpayers who are ‘paying’ for the ‘creation’ of these ‘jobs’.
Govt destroys. It does not ‘create’ anything.
It is only the referee.
We the people are the ones who ‘create’.
Looking to govt to ‘create’ anything is suicide.
And we the people are the ones who should be running govt.
What a joke this all is.

Badger40 on October 19, 2009 at 2:01 PM