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$787 Billion Doesn’t Buy Very Much These Days April 24, 2009

Posted by geoff in News.

The Labor Department released its latest employment figures, prompting some fairly dire projections from economists:

Worse-than-expected news on unemployment and home sales Thursday dampened optimism that a broad economic recovery might be near.

Many analysts don’t expect the housing slide to show signs of stabilizing until the second half of this year. They said layoffs may be at their high point, but that the jobless rate, already at a 25-year high, will keep rising until the middle of 2010.

Rise until 2010? RISE UNTIL 2010?

That can’t be – Obama’s economic team promised us that if we passed the stimulus package, unemployment would start dropping by July 1st! In fact, they even made a graph to show us how wonderful the stimulus package was going to be:

See? SEE? The unemployment rate was never supposed to go over 8%. But when you compare projections to the actual unemployment results (the triangles in maroon), the actual data doesn’t seem to follow the “With Recovery Plan” curve.

In a stunning surprise, the data does follow the curve projected by the GOP and the conservative punditry, who said there would be no near-term benefit from the stimulus package. Now the economists are saying that the unemployment rate won’t start dropping until the middle of 2010. Gee, that’s when it would have started dropping if we had done nothing.

I know we all thought the stimulus package was not focused very well on near-term relief, but I don’t think anybody would have predicted that it would have absolutely no benefit 2 months after it had passed.  …or more than a year after it had passed.


1. Pupster - April 24, 2009

“In a stunning surprise, the data does to be following”

Tushar’s a front-pager now?

Thank you, come again.

2. Wickedpinto - April 24, 2009

Not to mention the early tax receipts.

the 1.85 trillion is based on 2005-2007 revenues, what are the odds that during a recession and rather thorough economic contraction that we will maintain the MASSIVE tax receipts we had in 2005-2007?

Not likely, My bet, this deficit (in real dollars, not comparative) will be about 2.5 trillion

3. eddiebear - April 24, 2009

This Porkulus was nothing more than vote buying and payoffs to ACORN

4. Wickedpinto - April 24, 2009

also, I miss cranky.

5. Wickedpinto - April 24, 2009

also, as an urban guy from a place that requires a lot of road work and construction, I can tell you that road construction DOES NOT! lead to a bunch of people getting work.

You have the de-waterer’s, and the surveyers, and the heavy equipment operators, and the engineers, but that’s about it, on any given day, maybe 10 people are working on 10’s of millions of dollars worth of roadwork in my hometown, I’ll take pictures if you want proof. Highway projects are not job expansive, because we invented these things a long time ago, that make it less labor intensive, called MACHINES!!!!

6. Wickedpinto - April 24, 2009

and buy GE.

7. daveintexas - April 24, 2009

It had a benefit, albeit an unadvertised one.

8. Rocks - April 24, 2009

Amazing. Dems were as wrong with this graph as they were with this one, http://joannenova.com.au/2009/04/03/global-warming-a-classic-case-of-alarmism/, dealing with Global Warming.
Almost to the same degree.

9. wickedpinto - April 24, 2009

It has been over 60 degree’s ONCE this month in chicago.


I usually have the windows and door and fans runing at this time this year. but I’m still in winter mode, cuz it is that EFFING COLD!

10. wickedpinto - April 24, 2009

I haven’t even planted my basil yet, and I usually do that in early march late february.

11. geoff - April 24, 2009

Tushar’s a front-pager now?

You are to be unnatural in acts of molesting self.

12. wickedpinto - April 24, 2009

I think that is against the law in whatever brownie mythology tushar believes.

13. wickedpinto - April 24, 2009

did the US win Powerball?

If not, they should stop spending.

14. Graph and Gumption « White Lily At Home - April 24, 2009

[…] people made up the above graph back when they were trying to sell the stimulus plan.  Says Geoff, who expounds on this at Innocent Bystanders: “The unemployment rate was never supposed to go over 8%. But when you compare projections to […]

15. Michael - April 24, 2009

See Geoff?

We got a WhiteLily-O-Lanche!

I told you that something intelligent at IB would go over big.

16. harrison - April 24, 2009

I thought White Lily was a brand of flour…

17. Muslihoon - April 24, 2009

White Lily is awesome.

Geoff, my friend, I think you mean: “the data do…” Plurals and subject-and-verb-agreement and all that.

18. geoff - April 24, 2009

Geoff, my friend, I think you mean: “the data do…”

Yeah, there’s an implied “set” after “data” whenever I talk about such things. Bad habit. I’ll leave it that way until tomorrow as an act of self-flagellation.

19. Mrs. Peel - April 24, 2009

Data has been largely accepted as a collective noun, which is why it commonly takes the singular verb (in AmEng).

Of course, that doesn’t stop me from pedantically insisting that it’s a plural noun. But then, nothing stops me from making pedantic points, unless your counterpoint is even more pedantic, in which case I will adopt it as my own henceforth. Oh yeah!

20. Stimulus is a failure - April 25, 2009

[…] According to Obama’s own graph he used to sell it. […]

21. Purple Avenger - April 25, 2009

Good thing I shorted bullshit. There’s a vast over supply of it right now and the price collapsed.

22. FeFe - April 26, 2009

But if jobless claims rise in the nation and no one reports it on wrecovery.gov does it emit CO2?

23. The April Numbers Are In – It’s Official « Innocent Bystanders - May 8, 2009

[…] in News. trackback A couple of weeks ago I wrote a post on the predicted unemployment numbers for April. Well, the real numbers came in today, and the result was exactly what they predicted: 8.9% […]

24. Unemployment estimates - with and without recovery plan | Radio Vice Online - May 11, 2009

[…] Bystanders has two (first, second) good posts on the subject of President Obama’s Recovery Plan and what it was […]

25. Stones Cry Out - If they keep silent… » How Effective Is the Stimulus? - May 12, 2009

[…] one of the many writers at the Innocent Bystanders blog, noted in April, and again last week when the April numbers were official, that the unemployment figures are […]

26. Obama's "Recovery Plan" and unemployment. - U.S. Politics Online: A Political Discussion Forum - May 13, 2009

[…] dollars. Just one problem – reality is stubbornly refusing to conform to the graph. (graph from $787 Billion Doesn’t Buy Very Much These Days Innocent Bystanders) So, all you champions of borrow-and-spend-our-way-to-prosperity – and I’m looking at you here, […]

27. RSS agregator » Blog Archive » Obama’s "Recovery Plan" and unemployment. - May 14, 2009

[…] (graph from $787 Billion Doesn’t Buy Very Much These Days Innocent Bystanders) […]

28. The May Unemployment Numbers are Here, and Worse Than Predicted « Innocent Bystanders - June 5, 2009

[…] original post on the subject, noting that criticisms of the stimulus package may not have been motivated by […]

29. Belmont Club » Where on the curve? - June 6, 2009

[…] methodology is simple: he has been tracking figures as announced from the time of his original post on the subject compared to numbers projected by Christina Romer and Jared Bernstein describing the American […]

30. Unemployement Worse if We’d Had No Stimulus « Rantings of mine - June 8, 2009

[…] original post on the subject, noting that criticisms of the stimulus package may not have been motivated by […]

31. The Unemployment Prediction for July « Innocent Bystanders - August 6, 2009

[…] original post on the subject, noting that criticisms of the stimulus package may not have been motivated by […]

32. July Unemployment « Innocent Bystanders - August 7, 2009

[…] original post on the subject, noting that criticisms of the stimulus package may not have been motivated by […]

33. “The Chart” | Bring the heat, Bring the Stupid - September 10, 2012

[…] Geoff, posting at Innocent Bystanders, early on recognized that the Obama Administrations prediction… […]

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