By Hans Bader
“The recovery is picking up steam as employers boost payrolls, but economists think the government’s stimulus package and jobs bill had little to do with the rebound, according to a survey released Monday” by the National Association of Business Economics. “Economists: The Stimulus Didn’t Help” is the headline from CNN Money. The vast majority of economists shared that conclusion. Nobel Prize winning economist Gary Becker says that President Obama’s policies are delaying economic recovery.
Obama falsely claimed that the $787 billion stimulus package was needed to prevent “irreversible decline,” but the Congressional Budget Office admitted that it would actually shrink the economy “in the long run“ by driving up the national debt. The stimulus package has since destroyed thousands of jobs in America’s export sector, and subsidized countless examples of government waste and corruption.
Unemployment has skyrocketed past European levels, as big-spending countries have fared worse than thrifty ones. As the Washington Examiner notes, “If his stimulus program was approved, Obama promised, unemployment would not go above 8 percent . . . The reality is that it passed 10.3 percent.”
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Districts where people are struggling and unemployment is high are not receiving any more money than those in which unemployment is low, even though a stated purpose of the $800 billion stimulus package was to help the unemployed. But politics mattered in doling out federal funds. And “Democratic districts also received two-and-a-half times more stimulus dollars than Republican districts.”
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Earlier, one of Obama’s own advisers worried that the “barrage of tax increases” in his budgets could harm the economy and prevent a “sustained” economic recovery.