Stimulus jobs nothing more than “featherbedding”?

posted at 10:50 am on November 2, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

The Washington Examiner takes apart the administration’s stimulus job-producing numbers, calling them the worst kind of featherbedding seen, and not surprisingly from the most union-friendly White House in decades.  Even if one accepts the numbers of “saved or created” jobs from the Obama administration, the Examiner argues, the cost-benefit calculation makes this an absurd program to herald as some sort of success:

Featherbedding occurs when paychecks are issued for nonexistent employees and the money goes directly into union coffers. Thousands of the jobs Obama officials say were saved or created by the stimulus program are no more real than those invisible positions invented by unions to bulk up their treasuries. We know this to be the case because as Obama’s chief economist, Christina Romer, admitted several weeks ago, “It’s very hard to say exactly because you don’t know what the baseline is, right, because you don’t know what the economy would have done without [the economic stimulus program].”

Even if we take at face value the White House claim that it created or saved all these jobs with approximately $150 billion of the economic stimulus money, a little simple math shows the taxpayers aren’t getting any bargains here: $150 billion divided by 650,000 jobs equals $230,000 per job saved or created. Instead of taking all that time required to write the 1,588-page stimulus bill, Congress could have passed a one-pager saying the first 650,000 jobless persons to report for work at the White House will receive a voucher worth $230,000 redeemable at the university, community college or trade school of their choice. That would have been enough for a degree plus a hefty down payment on a mortgage.

Actually, taxpayers would be better off with such a deal, too, compared with the reality of the Obama stimulus program. Among the top 10 stimulus contracts awarded, there is the one for nearly $339 million that allegedly created or saved 41.19 jobs, or about $8.3 million per position. It was even worse with the $258 million contract to Brookhaven Science Associates in New York, where 25 jobs were saved or created, at a cost of $10.3 million per position. Rep. Kevin Brady, R-Texas, the ranking House minority member of the Joint Economic Committee, said it best: “What we know for certain is that 2.7 million payroll jobs have been lost since the Obama stimulus was signed into law, hundreds of thousands of more jobs are being lost each month, and America is so deep in debt, China and France are lecturing us to get our financial house in order.”

Jake Tapper made a similar argument when the White House released the figures.   Tapper gave them credit for their unsubstantiated claim of saving a million jobs based on the 640,000 that they had counted, so he calculated that the White House had spent $160,000 per job.  For his efforts at cost-benefit analysis, the administration accused him of “calculator abuse”:

So let’s see. Assuming their number is right — 160 billion divided by 1 million. Does that mean the stimulus costs taxpayers $160,000 per job?

Jared Bernstein, chief economist and senior economic advisor to the vice president, called that “calculator abuse.”

He said the cost per job was actually $92,000 — but acknowledged that estimate is for the whole stimulus package as of the end of 2010.

Jake may still be working with a calculator, but I’ll use the same spreadsheet program that I used in the corporate world to do my own cost-benefit analysis.  No one at the White House apparently worked in the private sector to understand the concept, but the idea of spending money to make money requires that kind of analysis in order to determine the efficiency and the efficacy of the project at hand.  That isn’t “calculator abuse,” it’s a standard operating procedure.  In fact, in the business world, someone proposing a big expenditure without a cost-benefit analysis would get laughed out of the boardroom.

Let’s start with the administration’s base number.  They claim to have directly saved or created 640,329 jobs with $159 billion of expenditures this year.  That actually comes to $248,310 per job, a little higher even than the Examiner’s calculation.  Using the median household income in America of about $51,000 to calculate this, how long would it take the tax revenue from each job to pay back the stimulus spending that “saved or created” it (and just the principal, not the interest accruing on the debt)?  At an effective tax rate of 15%, it would take thirty-two years and five months — almost the entire career of the person holding it.  At an effective tax rate of 20%, it would take less … just twenty-four years, four months.

Or let’s consider the administration’s wildest claim, that of a million jobs saved or created at $159,000 per job.  At the 15% effective tax rate, it would still take almost twenty-one years to pay back the principal; at the 20% rate, fifteen years, seven months.  And bear in mind that this calclation applies all of the federal taxes paid to paying back the cost of the stimulus that created the job.

It also assumes that the jobs are permanently “saved or created” by this federal intervention.  That’s simply not the case.  Most of the jobs in their calculus are bureaucratic jobs at the state level that won’t get funded next year by Washington.  States will still have to make tough decisions on employment levels that should have been made decades ago.  All Porkulus did was delay that needed decision by throwing money at the states, who used it not to improve efficiency but to paper over budget gaps that will recur next year as well.

Anyone who proposed spending any amount of money in the private sector that would take thirty-two years to see even the principal return would find themselves working in the government tout suite.  That’s how we got Porkulus in the first place.


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And Obambi wonders why we don’t want to give him healthcare.

John the Libertarian on November 2, 2009 at 10:54 AM

It also assumes that the jobs are permanently “saved or created” by this federal intervention. That’s simply not the case. Most of the jobs in their calculus are bureaucratic jobs at the state level that won’t get funded next year by Washington. States will still have to make tough decisions on employment levels that should have been made decades ago. All Porkulus did was delay that needed decision by throwing money at the states, who used it not to improve efficiency but to paper over budget gaps that will recur next year as well.

Indeed….

visions on November 2, 2009 at 10:55 AM

what is (or should be) astounding, is that no matter how they try to slice this baloney — by saying they have saved or created 30,000 jobs or 600,000 jobs — the cost per job is staggering.

And that’s even given that they hsay they only have spent 15% of the stimulus.

Saved or created, my a$$.

VoyskaPVO on November 2, 2009 at 10:55 AM

These guys who foisted this upon us have such a perverse view of economics and mathematics themselves. It’s pretty funny to claim ‘calculator abuse’ when common sense logic shows that their fuzzy math is adding up to one thing–a BAD DEAL. Hell, any kid with a crayon can see that this deal isn’t worth jack or squat, but, then again, that’s about all that the administration is capable of delivering these days.

ted c on November 2, 2009 at 10:56 AM

Don’t forget that most of the jobs created or saved are government jobs, not private sector jobs.

Dasher on November 2, 2009 at 10:57 AM

I’m really beginning to hate government.

deidre on November 2, 2009 at 10:57 AM

Featherbedding occurs when paychecks are issued for nonexistent employees

On my 1040 this year I am going to claim my occupation as featherbedder and send them a non-existent check.

fourdeucer on November 2, 2009 at 10:58 AM

The real question, which reporters don’t seem to want to talk about…

Government jobs do NOT produce wealth… they do not grow the economy.

These “jobs” are almost all Government payroll jobs… many of which do not even provide any real benefit or service to the country…

Thus… these jobs LEACH wealth from the system, they do not create it.

Romeo13 on November 2, 2009 at 10:59 AM

The only conclusion that can be drawn from this boondoggle is that it was the express intent of the Obama administration, along with its good friends Pelosi, Reid, et al., to eviscerate with malice aforethought the free enterprise tradition of the United States economy and replace it with a welfare state.

turfmann on November 2, 2009 at 10:59 AM

I’m gonna wait to hear what Newt has to say before I reach a conclusion.

a capella on November 2, 2009 at 11:00 AM

What happens when someone gets “we weed up” around a “featherbed”?

Does Pookie know?

ted c on November 2, 2009 at 11:01 AM

Soon the government run health care will be giving us the number of lives “saved or created”…

d1carter on November 2, 2009 at 11:01 AM

Its nauseating to see someone so completely naive and out of touch be able to destroy our nation and economy without any regards for his actions. This is a movement that has been coming for decades and now, after seizing the White House, are commited to Cap & Trade in Copenhagen next month.This could lead to years of a declining standard of living in order for Americans to bring us down to global standards.

volsense on November 2, 2009 at 11:02 AM

This guy is just one disgrace after another!

xler8bmw on November 2, 2009 at 11:02 AM

Ahhh. Wasn’t there a time when citizens actually thought intelligent people went into government service? If that were ever the case, it sure as hell isn’t now.

TQM38a on November 2, 2009 at 11:02 AM

Obama: Savin‘ Jobs n’ Playin’ Golf !

At this rate, when can I expect my $248,000 job to appear?

Before or after China sells our economy for scrap?

profitsbeard on November 2, 2009 at 11:03 AM

All they did was steal $787 billion plus interest from the private sector and give $787 billion to non-producing, temporary, inefficient, public sector agencies.

They did the opposite of Corporate Welfare, and provided welfare to themselves and their cronies.

PatriotRider on November 2, 2009 at 11:04 AM

So the government is cooking the books. This doesn’t surprise me in any way. This adminsitration was elected on lies and has done a bang up job by lying consistantly.
Rock on Barry, way to lead a country.

milwife88 on November 2, 2009 at 11:04 AM

This is why Obama and democrats can’t get anything done because people who live in the real world have to suffer the consequences of government stupidity.

Conservative Samizdat on November 2, 2009 at 11:06 AM

Obama

OmahaConservative on November 2, 2009 at 11:09 AM

Gobama!

Bleeds Blue on October 29, 2009 at 10:15 AM

From another thread, but such a great quote.

CBP on November 2, 2009 at 11:09 AM

If George W had done it……

ted c on November 2, 2009 at 11:10 AM

It doesn’t matter how outrageous the claims because they are no longer speaking to the rational part of the voting public.

They are speaking to the nutcake 35% (or so) who will never abandon this criminal because they aren’t interested in the future, they are interested in what they can steal NOW.

With that lunatic 35%, solid as bedrock, they figure they can still win in 2012.

But, God permit, they will be proven wrong, and God permit, many of them will go to jail for their crimes against the country.

notagool on November 2, 2009 at 11:10 AM

Feather-bedding sounds like waste, fraud and abuse to me. Who’s going to investigate this? The Featherbedding Czar?

BottomLine5 on November 2, 2009 at 11:11 AM

We are officially governed by a kleptocracy.

Democrats help themselves to our money and do nothing for us in return.

This is getting to be like 1789 France.

Democrats will be getting some haircuts soon and there will be melons in the fruit baskets, at this rate.

NoDonkey on November 2, 2009 at 11:11 AM

Gobama!

Bleeds Blue on October 29, 2009 at 10:15 AM

I agree.

And take Biden, Pelosi, Reid, Frank and Dodd with you.

GTFO of my country.

NoDonkey on November 2, 2009 at 11:12 AM

Ed’s calculations are too simplistic. Return on investment? That is a capitalist paradigm used in flyover country.

What Ed fails to consider is that the stimulus bends curves. What this Administration is all about is curve bending. That’s higher math. Kinda like the math built into climate models that predict that it should be 87 degrees outside today instead of 30.

clorensen on November 2, 2009 at 11:13 AM

Calculator abuse, from the same people that torture numbers until they will say what ever they want.

fourdeucer on November 2, 2009 at 11:14 AM

Here’s a tool we posted back in July 2009 that allows users to work out the macroeconomic cost-benefit analysis of the stimulus package.

Using that tool, and incorporating what we know today:

A. $787 billion stimulus,

B. Government inefficiency factor of 80%,

C. Keynesian government spending multiplier of 120% (based on the uppermost end of what Robert Barro’s empirical research indicates),

D. A recognition that approximately 90% of currently idle resources will remain idle (this is primarily the private sector, whose jobs have not been either “created” or “saved”), and

E. A deadweight loss of $.40 per new tax dollar collected (in other words, it costs the government $1.40 to realize the collection of each new dollar of tax revenue it imposes.)

We find that the net gain to the U.S. economy from the 2009 stimulus measure is a negative $850 billion dollars. Or as the tool says:

“The combination of government inefficiency and deadweight losses from higher anticipated taxes make this proposed stimulus a net losing proposition. It won’t work.”

Of course, if you don’t like the assumptions behind the math, you’re welcome to alter them in the tool as you see fit.

ironman on November 2, 2009 at 11:15 AM

“calculator abuse.”

I accuse this adminstration of rank “reality abuse”.

MarkTheGreat on November 2, 2009 at 11:15 AM

Ed’s calculations are too simplistic. Return on investment?

It looks like his calculations are for getting a 0% return on investment. So, this “investment” still does no even cover the interests costs.

Creating jobs is NOT an investment…creating wealth is, and governments do not create wealth.

WashJeff on November 2, 2009 at 11:16 AM

Maybe the white house needs a Reverse Polish Notation calculator. They are MUCH easier to use.

WashJeff on November 2, 2009 at 11:17 AM

It also assumes that the jobs are permanently “saved or created” by this federal intervention. That’s simply not the case. Most of the jobs in their calculus are bureaucratic jobs at the state level that won’t get funded next year by Washington. States will still have to make tough decisions on employment levels that should have been made decades ago.

Oh, don’t worry. That’s what Porkulus II: The Wrath of Con will be for.

Actually, that’ll never pass since their political capital is almost entirely gone thanks to the first porkulus bill and Obamacare. I’m just wondering what unemployment will look like a year from now when states are shedding workers and the private sector still hasn’t recovered.

Doughboy on November 2, 2009 at 11:19 AM

Scozzafava could have saved us from this mess.

Bishop on November 2, 2009 at 11:19 AM

Pookie knows best.

txag92 on November 2, 2009 at 11:19 AM

Actually, that’ll never pass since their political capital is almost entirely gone

Democrats\statists have never been good at investing, managing, and understanding capital…just see their economic policies.

WashJeff on November 2, 2009 at 11:20 AM

Whether it is $248,000, $230,000 or $160,000, these state bureaucratic jobs are not paying that level of salary. So where the hell is all that money going: ACORN & associates? Swiss bank accounts? George Soros? The American taxpayer is getting ripped off in the biggest fraud ever. This makes Bernie Madoff look like a piker.

Where is the money that’s gotten spent?

rbj on November 2, 2009 at 11:21 AM

The problem is that the stimulus was too small. We need another one passed right away.

BadgerHawk on November 2, 2009 at 11:21 AM

I’m gonna wait to hear what Newt has to say before I reach a conclusion.

a capella on November 2, 2009 at 11:00 AM

That’s a real smart approach, wait until the one that cozies up with Pelosi and drinks the Klimate-KoolAide is going to provide you with some insight.

Have another round of that Klimate-KooAide!

belad on November 2, 2009 at 11:21 AM

If there are any rational people out there who think Porkulus was in any way shape or form designed to be a “stimulus” let me know. I have some used cares I need to get rid of sell.

Johnnyreb on November 2, 2009 at 11:22 AM

I’m really beginning to hate government.
deidre on November 2, 2009 at 10:57 AM

Only just?

MainelyRight on November 2, 2009 at 11:23 AM

cares=cars

Johnnyreb on November 2, 2009 at 11:23 AM

We are officially governed by a kleptocracy.

Democrats help themselves to our money and do nothing for us in return.

This is getting to be like 1789 France.

Democrats will be getting some haircuts soon and there will be melons in the fruit baskets, at this rate.

NoDonkey on November 2, 2009 at 11:11 AM

That’s why I keep telling people to re-read the French Revolution. Because it’s coming here!

xler8bmw on November 2, 2009 at 11:24 AM

Federal government deficit of $1,400 BILLION and the GDP grows a little less than $100 BILLION. That is how Governments grow the economy.

jukin on November 2, 2009 at 11:24 AM

The three-card Monte Presidency continues apace.

Good Lt on November 2, 2009 at 11:25 AM

That isn’t “calculator abuse,” it’s a standard operating procedure. In fact, in the business world, someone proposing a big expenditure without a cost-benefit analysis would get laughed out of the boardroom.

Good one, Ed.

Where I work, they’d be laughed out of the Men’s room. They’d never even make it to the boardroom with such a dim witted proposal.

UltimateBob on November 2, 2009 at 11:25 AM

It’s now officially official….Norah O’Donnell says Virginia’s governors race is a referendum on Obama’s spending policies—including stimulus, national debt, and HEALTHCARE!!!

NBC executives lining up to give her a spanking.

Rovin on November 2, 2009 at 11:26 AM

Someone should do an analysis of how many jobs were destroyed or prevented because of the loss of confidence in the economy among small business owners due to the deficit spending.

LeeSeneca on November 2, 2009 at 11:27 AM

It’s now officially official….Norah O’Donnell says Virginia’s governors race is a referendum on Obama’s spending policies—including stimulus, national debt, and HEALTHCARE!!!
NBC executives lining up to give her a spanking.

Rovin on November 2, 2009 at 11:26 AM

What’s the weather forecast in hell today?

ted c on November 2, 2009 at 11:27 AM

The problem is that the stimulus was too small. We need another one passed right away.

BadgerHawk on November 2, 2009 at 11:21 AM

I was thinking a mandatory 10% raise for everyone. That will fix EVERYTHING!

WashJeff on November 2, 2009 at 11:27 AM

Does pookie sleep on a featherbed?

TXUS on November 2, 2009 at 11:27 AM

Does Pookie need a featherbed in order to get his a$$ out to pull the lever for Corzine instead of his own?

ted c on November 2, 2009 at 11:28 AM

belad on November 2, 2009 at 11:21 AM

Heh.

a capella on November 2, 2009 at 11:29 AM

Protest parody: Workers with Jobs the White House Claims it Created Say They’re Underpaid; Compare Their Meager Salaries to Huge Costs to Taxpayers http://optoons.blogspot.com/2009/11/workers-with-jobs-white-house-claims-it.html

Mervis Winter on November 2, 2009 at 11:29 AM

It’s now officially official….Norah O’Donnell says Virginia’s governors race is a referendum on Obama’s spending policies—including stimulus, national debt, and HEALTHCARE!!!
NBC executives lining up to give her a spanking.

Rovin on November 2, 2009 at 11:26 AM

When did Letterman move his show to NBC?

TXUS on November 2, 2009 at 11:30 AM

How about following the money, ABC, CBS, NBC, NYT, WaPo, WSJ, etc? Taking the administrations’ own data, they are supposedly paying 240K per job. Are the workers actually being paid that much gross? Obviously not. So who is getting the money? Hello, media, anyone working on that? Bueller? Bueller?

jwolf on November 2, 2009 at 11:30 AM

It’s now officially official….Norah O’Donnell says Virginia’s governors race is a referendum on Obama’s spending policies—including stimulus, national debt, and HEALTHCARE!!!

NBC executives lining up to give her a spanking.

Rovin on November 2, 2009 at 11:26 AM

Mmmm…. spanking Norah O….

How can I get a job as an NBC exec?

UltimateBob on November 2, 2009 at 11:31 AM

Chicago D. C.

rjoco1 on November 2, 2009 at 11:35 AM

It’s now officially official….Norah O’Donnell says Virginia’s governors race is a referendum on Obama’s spending policies—including stimulus, national debt, and HEALTHCARE!!!

NBC executives lining up to give her a spanking.

Rovin on November 2, 2009 at 11:26 AM

Nah, the White House said it was because Creigh Deeds ran away from Obama. Why would they lie?

Doughboy on November 2, 2009 at 11:42 AM

I’m really beginning to hate government.

deidre on November 2, 2009 at 10:57 AM

Beginning?
Sheesh!

;-)

MarkBoabaca on November 2, 2009 at 11:43 AM

And, Ed, your estimate is optimistic about the “payback” period because you’ve neglected the time-value of money. As I am sure you would know, a payment of $1 received in the future is worth less than a payment of $1 received now, for the simple reason that, in receiving the future payment, you lose use of the money between now and when the payment is received.

Interest rates are low, but let’s say the risk-free rate is 3%, and let’s choose to ignore inflation. Then the time to retire the debt on a $230,000 investment at a payment of 15% of $51000 annually ($7,650) is almost 79 years.

Of course, the coming hyper-inflation, of which this massive boondoggle is part cause, will erode the value of the “loan”, so assuming salaries are indexed for inflation, and tax rates not, the debt will be discharged much earlier.

Heyyy…. wait a minute here.

mr.blacksheep on November 2, 2009 at 11:47 AM

I’m really beginning to hate government.

deidre on November 2, 2009 at 10:57 AM

As they say in France: “Moi aussi!!!”

Sweet_Thang on November 2, 2009 at 11:56 AM

Maybe the white house needs a Reverse Polish Notation calculator. They are MUCH easier to use.

WashJeff on November 2, 2009 at 11:17 AM

Another fan of HP calculators, and yes, they are much easier to use. I’ll never go back.

txsurveyor on November 2, 2009 at 12:04 PM

Reverse Polish Notation

OT: The origin of the idea the Poles do every thing backwards……except in the case of Alan Kulwicki, for any of you old school NASCAR fans.

Jerome Horwitz on November 2, 2009 at 12:12 PM

Even if one accepts the numbers of “saved or created” jobs

Which numbers would that be, exactly? Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays or the actual BLS U-6 numbers?

You can’t believe anything coming out of the Bozo regime.

How much more BS can the people stand? Even the LSM cheerleaders are starting to get embarrassed.

dogsoldier on November 2, 2009 at 12:30 PM

So “saved or created” should really be “stolen or embezzled”.

MB4 on November 2, 2009 at 12:57 PM

Rush said it all;
in over his head
inexperienced
thinks only of himself
nartistic

He nailed him.

bluegrass on November 2, 2009 at 12:58 PM

Anyone else being to see RECESSION: Part II ahead?

GarandFan on November 2, 2009 at 1:00 PM

Ed, did you catch the video from the WH just now?
Obama surrounded by the special business council of advisers talking down the jobs ahead of Thursday’s Oct Jobs report, where I expect we hit 10% rate and the SEPT revisions are likely ugly too)

Obama has the utter gaul to talk about needing to stop spending and be responsible, and he included govt in that, then he talked up his plan for BOLD ACTION to create jobs and tied it too..wait for it. GREEN JOBS!!and GE Jeff Iran Immelt sitting at the table there, IOW get ready for another ginormous govt program for ‘green jobs’ funneling cash to GE!

Then he iced the cake with word that we need TRILLIONS in infrastrucutre spending, which IIRC was how he sold the crapulent spendulus!!

how can ANYONE not laugh out loud at his hypocrisy and incompetence??

ginaswo on November 2, 2009 at 1:01 PM

Obama

OmahaConservative on November 2, 2009 at 11:09 AM

Yep, he’s toast.

jimmy2shoes on November 2, 2009 at 1:07 PM

The Washington Examiner may know a lot about jobs saved or created (quite a hoax indeed) by the so-called stimulus package. However, it doesn’t have a clue as to the meaning of “featherbedding”.

The classic example of the word’s use has to do with the rail industry no longer needing firemen because of dieselization. I have been railroading almost thirty-two years, and I have never seen what the Examiner calls “featherbedding” occur.

Labor organizations’ (from local units on up) annual LM reports are available online. If any news organization believes federal money is going directly into union coffers, that’s easily enough proved. And the kind of money we are talking about here isn’t easily hidden.

Now, if anyone wants to make the argument that “stimulus” money is creating an inordinate number of unionized government jobs, and therefore a portion of the money is being paid in dues, I’d like to see that argument presented.

tgharris on November 2, 2009 at 1:48 PM

***
A recent article claimed that each CASH FOR CLUNKERS rebate of $4000 each cost the taxpayers over $20000 each. I would like to see some real accounting explain to me what happened to the missing $16000 per car.
***
Expenses for this giveaway should be 10 percent or less–not 80 percent. Follow the money–where did it go?
***
John Bibb
***

rocketman on November 2, 2009 at 1:57 PM

Can I just have a check for $20K, I’m not greedy and I promise to stimulate the economy at every opportunity…. I could even try to do it in an environmentally friendly way!

kringeesmom on November 2, 2009 at 2:30 PM

Can I just have a check for $20K, I’m not greedy and I promise to stimulate the economy at every opportunity…. I could even try to do it in an environmentally friendly way!

kringeesmom on November 2, 2009 at 2:30 PM

That’s called tax relief—-a sin to Democrats

Rovin on November 2, 2009 at 2:42 PM

I’m beginning to think that the political parties require a candidate to flunk Economics 101 and prove a complete lack of math and reading abilities in order to run for office.

landlines on November 2, 2009 at 3:29 PM

Of course all these calculations ignore:- the carrying cost of the money- the opportunity cost to the economy and its citizens of having the money put by force to a less productive use

There is no logical way to make these “saved and created” jobs pencil out.

Get ready for another full year of this BS as we enter into the 2010 election cycle and the rest of the $787B will be squandered on vote buying schemes by the Obama administration.

in_awe on November 2, 2009 at 3:53 PM

Desperate for a steady job (to go with my 2 part-timers), I was thrilled to get a 40-hour per week office job from my local census office that will last until next September.

It may be a government job, but it’s Constitutional.

Then I found out my 23K a year job was created by the stimulus package. Ok, I’m still working there, since someone has gotta have it by law, even if it’s bad law.

Then one of the 10 Regional Census Centers spent almost $1 million bringing 400 employees to an ocean-side resort for one day of training on Thursday, then followed that up with another $1 million for bringing mostly the same employees back for training again the following Monday. (After paying for them to return home on Friday and come back on Sunday.)

My stimulus-funded butt stayed home at the office.

It is unclear to me if the entire Census is being funded with stimulus dollars–I don’t believe it is, but they sure spend the money like it is–but if so, just who is getting the benefit of this ridiculous outlay of money?

A: no one.

The primary cost of doing business this way is the tremendously inefficient use of airline fuel and gasoline by all of the persons travelling.
In order for a person to claim the .55 per mile travel rate they must drive their personal car, so car pooling is discouraged. Paying employees extra for burning non-renewable fuels does not stimulate job creation nor perpetuate trade.
But the alternative is for the Census to pay twice as much for last-minute airline tickets from one small, out-of-the-way airport to a major hub and then to another small out-of-the-way airport.

The USCB did save money by getting a great rate on those $595 a night off-season resort rooms (various employees estimate that the USCB only paid about $200 a night!!)…Of course, when I was in private sector, my companies always made us double up in the rooms and never gave us near as good a per diem as the USCB did.

It’s always nice to know I work for a first-class organization, but so sad to think where the money is coming from…anyone could be first-class if they had an unlimited checkbook.

So my $23K job was created by stimulus, but everyone else is making the extra $$$$ from it with no regard for thrift or efficiency.

rwenger43 on November 2, 2009 at 7:10 PM

Gobama!

Bleeds Blue on October 29, 2009 at 10:15 AM

I agree.

And take Biden, Pelosi, Reid, Frank and Dodd with you.

GTFO of my country.

NoDonkey on November 2, 2009 at 11:12 AM

Don’t forget bad breath,stinkysimon,and the rest of the usless trolls.

huckelberry on November 2, 2009 at 7:37 PM

they could have given each taxpayer 250K and there would be not crisis, no bailouts needed, no health insurance reform, no mortgage crisis. And everyone would have enough money to pay off their debts and move to Russia, where there are more rights than this country will have in a few years under this administration.

workingforpigs on November 2, 2009 at 7:41 PM

How much do you want to bet the administration really did only spend $92k on each job, and is relying on a curiously incurious press to simply not ask where the other $68k per job went?

(I hear the skiing in the Swiss Alps this time of year is fantastic…)

Blacksmith on November 2, 2009 at 8:52 PM

It’s not “featherbedding”, it’s “Padding the Payroll with Positions for Pookie”

ya2daup on November 3, 2009 at 6:40 AM