Obama’s Economists Admit: ‘Stimulus’ Has Cost $278,000 per Job


stimulus-checksWhen the Obama administration releases a report on the Friday before a long weekend, it’s clearly not trying to draw attention to the report’s contents. Sure enough, the “Seventh Quarterly Report” on the economic impact of the “stimulus,” released on Friday, July 1, provides further evidence that President Obama’s economic “stimulus” did very little, if anything, to stimulate the economy, and a whole lot to stimulate the debt.

The report was written by the White House’s Council of Economic Advisors, a group of three economists who were all handpicked by Obama, and it chronicles the alleged success of the “stimulus” in adding or saving jobs. The council reports that, using “mainstream estimates of economic multipliers for the effects of fiscal stimulus” (which it describes as a “natural way to estimate the effects of” the legislation), the “stimulus” has added or saved just under 2.4 million jobs – whether private or public – at a cost (to date) of $666 billion. That’s a cost to taxpayers of $278,000 per job.

In other words, the government could simply have cut a $100,000 check to everyone whose employment was allegedly made possible by the “stimulus,” and taxpayers would have come out $427 billion ahead.

Furthermore, the council reports that, as of two quarters ago, the “stimulus” had added or saved just under 2.7 million jobs – or 288,000 more than it has now. In other words, over the past six months, the economy would have added or saved more jobs without the “stimulus” than it has with it. In comparison to how things would otherwise have been, the “stimulus” has been working in reverse over the past six months, causing the economy to shed jobs.

Again, this is the verdict of Obama’s own Council of Economic Advisors, which is about as much of a home-field ruling as anyone could ever ask for. In truth, it’s quite possible that by borrowing an amount greater than the regular defense budget or the annual cost of Medicare, and then spending it mostly on Democratic constituencies rather than in a manner genuinely designed to stimulate the economy, Obama’s “stimulus” has actually undermined the economy’s recovery – while leaving us (thus far) $666 billion deeper in debt.

The actual employment numbers from the administration’s own Bureau of Labor Statistics show that the unemployment rate was 7.3 percent when the “stimulus” was being debated. It has since risen to 9.1 percent. Meanwhile, the national debt at the end of 2008, when Obama was poised to take office, was $9.986 trillion (see Table S-9). It’s now $14.467 trillion – and counting.

All sides agree on these incriminating numbers – and now they also appear to agree on this important point: The economy would now be generating job growth at a faster rate if the Democrats hadn’t passed the “stimulus.”

{Weekly Standard/matzav.com Newscenter}


  1. “In other words, over the past six
    months, the economy would have added or saved
    more jobs without the “stimulus” than it has with
    it. In comparison to how things would otherwise
    have been, the “stimulus” has been working in
    reverse over the past six months, causing the
    economy to shed jobs.” This is in no way stated in the report. It says that as the economy worsened the ability of the stimulus to save jobs was undermined and more jobs were lost. Therefore fewer jobs were saved. This may or may not have been better or worse without the stimulus and how the author is interpreting it is based upon his own political views (which I agree with) but not the interpretation of the President.

  2. of course the Weekly Standard, the neo conservative magazine–that charged ahead with murdering 4,000 American soldiers in Iraq– is the place to learn about the Stimulus.

    If the Weekly Standard is a truth reporter why did it lie and report $278,000 per Job when not all the money of the stimulus went to pay for jobs? Why did they lie to their readership by leading their readership to believe that was the case? Why didnt the WS explain to the readers that 300 billion of the 798 billion were tax cuts that were Congressionally added on to Obama’s trillion dollar oriignal stimulus proposal? How come the WS didnt explain to their readers that more than half of the remaining 500 billion went to keep schools and States from collapsing ( i.e defaulting and not paying for what state governments owe). Why didnt the Weekly Standard explain that saving the states and the schools with federal dough isn’t the ideal of historically creating the best jobs? Why didnt the WS explain that the goal was to have more money to spend beyond the amount that went to these three categories in order to maximize the bang forh te buck? Why didnt the weekly standard explain that if Obamas trillion dollar stimulus was passed then the 500 billion extra would have gone for the better bang for the buck jobs. ( discounting the 300B in tax cuts in the bill that passed)

    For example: one of the best categories of jobs to fund with federal money is bid for private sector companies ( i.e. a hundred PRIVATE companies bid to fix a road, and the winner gets the federal money which his spent and then there is a multiplier effect. These dont end up costing 270,000 per job. There was this in the stimulus but there would have been much more if Obama was listened to and the dysfunctional Congress didnt kill 500 billion from the spending proposal of a trillion that O proposed. The unemployment rate would be under 7%

  3. The basic flaw in the stimulus concept is the idea that spending by the gov’t is better than spending by private citizens. Keynesians promoted the idea that every tax dollar used for gov’t projects would generate about 1.26 dolars of economic activity. Truth is it generates somewhere between .76 & .91 dollars of economic activity. Translation: Don’t tax or borrow & let people spend money as they choose & it will create more wealth leading to more jobs, etc. Liberal thinking continues to push the idea that you can make a bad policy good by doing it even more. if 500 billion more had been allocated the debt would simply be bigger. Obama’s own people are saying we won’t see unemployment below 8% for years and years.

  4. ben aharon ought to quote a source for this ridiculous statement
    Yeah sure where is it written that government bids to private companies cause .76 & .91 and tax cuts cause higher than 91 cents stimulus. you need to show both stats.
    I dare you to even try.

  5. Read the National Bureau of Economic Resarch article titled, “The Multiplier for Federal Spending During the New Deal” that reviews a 2009 study that showed the multiplier for economic activity was less than 1.oo for all gov’t spending and is probably worse today.


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