Local paper ahead of Obama’s visit: “Take your jobs plan and shove it”
posted at 3:01 pm on July 30, 2013 by Erika Johnsen
As I’m writing this, President Obama is doing his usual economic grandstanding routine in Chattanooga, Tennessee — and considering that Amazon just announced that they’re going on an epic hiring spree, their local Chattanooga warehouse is making a mighty convenient backdrop for the president jobs-oriented speech. The president is going on and on about “the ingredients we need” for good jobs, and all of his latest Keynesian stimulus ideas for economic growth, and talking up America’s need to “invest” in the jobs and infrastructure of the future.
Funnily enough, courtesy of Obama’s first and biggest round of what we were promised would amount to successful stimulus spending, Chattanooga is the home of one of those sorts of supposedly high-tech and cutting-edge projects of which the president seems to want to initiate more. …Thanks, but no thanks, say the editors of the Chattanooga Times Free Press:
Welcome to Chattanooga, one of hundreds of cities throughout this great nation struggling to succeed in spite of your foolish policies that limit job creation, stifle economic growth and suffocate the entrepreneurial spirit. …
That’s because your jobs creation plans so far have included a ridiculous government spending spree and punitive tax increase on job creators that were passed, as well as a minimum wage increase that, thankfully, was not. Economists — and regular folks with a basic understanding of math — understand that these are three of the most damaging policies imaginable when a country is mired in unemployment and starving for job growth. …
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 helped fund the Gig to Nowhere project, a $552 million socialist-style experiment in government-owned Internet, cable and phone services orchestrated by EPB — Chattanooga’s government-owned electric monopoly. …
While the Smart Grid will cost taxpayers and local electric customers well over a half-billion dollars when all is said and done, there has been little improvement in the quality of EPB’s electric service. Worse, despite being heavily subsidized, EPB’s government-owned Internet, cable and telephone outfit that competes head-to-head against private companies like AT&T and Comcast is barely staying afloat, often relying on loans from electric service reserve funds to afford its business expenses.
… As a result, Chattanooga has remained a relative ghost town for technological innovation. Almost no economic development whatsoever has resulted from the gig.
That was downright scathing, and considering that the federal government assured everyone that the grandiose project would create a bunch of awesome new futuristic jobs and “send tech companies and web entrepreneurs stampeding to Chattanooga in droves,” and that “all it did was push America deeper in debt and lure a local government agency into making a terrible financial decision that will weigh on Chattanoogans like a millstone for decades to come…” it’s definitely warranted.