I apologize for not getting anything posted yesterday! To make up for it, let’s take a look at a whole lotta stuff going on. Buckle up!
As is depressingly normal, Barack Obama is at the center of news. But, it’s not all rosy news now. In fact, for the first time since taking office, Obama’s overall approval rating has dropped into the negative. It will likely continue to bounce up and down, but the trend is definitely down, and should continue that way as his policies continue tanking the country.
He finally found his voice on the uprising in Iran, though, calling on the Iranian government to end its bloody crackdown and pledging to support those who stand for freedom and basic human rights. Then he promptly cut funding for pro-democracy programs inside Iran.
New rules have been made public for determining how many jobs have been ‘saved or created’, and it’s really quite remarkable:
The Obama administration issued its long-awaited rules for tallying jobs Monday and warned that local politicians trying to inflate their numbers would surely be caught.
As part of the $787 billion stimulus law, governors, mayors and contractors must begin reporting job numbers to the federal government in October.
Under the rules released Monday, the White House told governors, mayors and contractors to keep it simple.
“Just count the people being paid out of Recovery Act dollars,” said Rob Nabors, deputy director at the White House budget office.
To avoid double-counting, a job means a full-time, full-year job. So a student working a 9-to-5 job for his three-month summer vacation will be counted as one-fourth of a job. The part-time teacher who works all year is half a job. And the full-time highway contractor who works all year is one job.
The bottom line is this:
Um, if a company employing 500 people takes enough stimulus money to pay 10 employees out of those sums, that doesn’t mean any jobs have been “saved or created.” That only means they now have “free money” and are paying a few employees with that free money. It doesn’t mean a job was created — the job already existed — and doesn’t mean it was “saved,” either, because there’s no evidence the company would have eliminated the position but for the money, either.
Further, much of this money is pure pork directed towards specific tasks. If a company takes “stimulus” money to build a dog park, that doesn’t mean the money taken has “saved or created” any jobs at all. You can’t assume, for example, the company simply wouldn’t have been doing other jobs, real jobs paid for by private citizens and companies because they actually need those jobs done.
But Obama is going to simply claim, in effect, that every $40 or $50,000 of stimulus paid out “saves or creates” one job, because that’s ballpark average salary. A pork project costs $40,000,000? Wonderful! That means that 1000 jobs were saved or created! Obviously, Obama’s dollars must translate 1:1 into the salaries of “saved or created” jobs.
Some might call it political spin. I call it a load of political crap. It’s the kind of thing that we need to call out right now, today, if we are to accurately pin this sort of doublethink onto Obama and the Democrats in the 2010 election.
Fortunately, it looks like more and more people are seeing the truth and/or putting down the Kool-Aid, as 39% now see our current economic woes as being Obama’s responsibility. And, the number of Americans wanting Obama’s health care ‘reform’ (translation: government takeover) has dropped to 43%…those opposed now number 44%. In fact, compared to 1993 — the Left’s last major attempt to take over health care — the numbers now are worse than back then. Not good for Obama, very good for America. Part of that reluctance could be due to the fact that Democrats are now floating trial balloon after trial balloon of various taxes they could slap on us to pay for that health care takeover. Neither Obama nor the Dems have actually stated how they’re going to pay for it, and given the gigantic spending binge Obama and the Dems have been on since January, I think that all but the most Kool-Aid drenched are becoming leery of aggressive taxation. As the biggest, baddest, Obama cheerleader on the block, the New York Times offered up a poll showing ‘overwhelming‘ support for the takeover…but they had to sample Democrats 2 to 1 to get those numbers. It’s gotten so bad that even Democrats are now saying the takeover effort is ‘on life support‘. Good. I hope they kill it for good!
But enough about Obama. There are other things worth mentioning, too.
For example, Timothy ‘Tax Cheat’ Geithner is going to get aggressive on catching people trying to avoid paying their taxes. Following the theory that it takes one to know one, this should be one of the most spectacularly successful programs of the new administration.
His job will be made simpler by looking at his co-workers first. We’ve now learned that yet another Obama appointment — the chief of protocol for the State Department — has dodged taxes. I’ve lost count of how many Obama appointees have had tax problems, but I’m pretty certain it’s getting close to a dozen now.
In other news…another day, another Democrat indictment:
Texas billionaire R. Allen Stanford, whose sprawling banking empire collapsed this year, has been indicted for what prosecutors say is a $7 billion scheme to defraud investors.
What’s really amazing is how the AP somehow neglected to mention this guy’s a major Democrat donor. Funny how they seem quite happy to report that little ‘R’ word when the corruption is on the other side of the aisle, isn’t it?
Speaking of which, Republican Senator John Ensign of Nevada recently admitted to having an affair with one of his staffers. The next day he resigned his leadership post and issued an official apology. I like Ace of Spades’ summary statement:
Too bad he didn’t have the sense to
not mess around with a married stafferbe a Democrat.
What was that political truism in American politics again? Oh, yes:
There’s corruption and hypocrisy on both sides of the aisle, but isn’t it simply amazing how Reps clean house while Dems promote?
There’s my two cents.