Sunday, October 25, 2009

Some perspective on stimulus debate

Upon reading this column in Time, I had to comment.
The next counter came in a memo to House Republicans from economist and former John McCain adviser Douglas Holtz-Eakin, who wrote, "Jobs keep disappearing ... and the Obama Administration's only apparent plan is to double down on a failed strategy for economic stimulus." The next day, the White House went on offense, hailing a preliminary report on stimulus job creation (30,000 jobs directly created or saved by the first $16 billion in spending). House minority leader John Boehner retorted that such exulting was "beyond the pale" because "3 million private-sector jobs have been lost since it became law."
Let's wipe the Republican attacks off the table, and just take the White House defense of the stimulus at its word. If 30,000 jobs were created or saved by the first $16 billion in spending, how much is that per job manufactured? $533,333. Sometimes, it is worth taking a step back from the political melee to get some perspective.

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