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Government Games: Has Government Stimulus Really Saved Jobs?

January 14, 2010

E.J. Manning

On the surface, Politicians have sown trillions of dollars in the economy with the idea of creating jobs. Meanwhile, the federal government and mainstream media continues to obsess over theoretical job counts.

The whole economic publicity campaign has become a game that the American taxpayer can only lose. The economy continues to lose jobs, even if at a somewhat diminished rate. Employers are continuing to close shop, layoff workers or to cease hiring as the handwriting of a shrinking economy appears on the wall.  It is true that economic uncertainty is being generated by Washington. What will the U.S. federal government do next?

The government has recently been accused of stifling innovation by a trade group. “The government doesn’t spur innovation or entrepreneurship. The government often gets in the way,” said Mr. Gary Shapiro. He is the president of the Consumer Electronics Association that stages the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. He accused the federal government of panic spending where the “$787 billion stimulus act” was concerned. “The government is often a barrier.” “High taxes and regulatory bureaucracy are barriers.”

What is the response of the federal government? The new technology czar said that the US government is planning a summit with a number of chief executives from the “most innovative companies in the country to directly advise us to make government more efficient and more effective”. The government sees this as a opportunity to be more effective based on the advice of large corporations.

Where is the leadership in protecting taxpayers from continued corporate fraud schemes with U.S. tax code, a debacle that has been in place since 1991. Government has no ideas of its own, so it will fund a summit campmeeting to talk about how government can be more effective. Does this make sense? Who is kidding who?

A recent CNBC headline makes a case of the plight of large corporations: “Many Reluctant to Hire Because of New Taxes, Rules.” The article indicates businesses don’t need is another government summit any more than it needs more Washington talks on the economic crisis while pretending to do something about banker graft. Instead of tightening loopholes in the tax code for big corporations,(including banking entities) , government allows billions of dollars to be removed from the U.S. economy through “legal cheats” and fuzzy law. These loopholes aren’t enough for big corporate types and multinationals. They see the prospect of increased federal and state regulation along with taxes as disruptive to their hiring plans. Big business pays remarkably few taxes compared to their profits.

Small businesses continue to be left out in the cold, with more and more legislation combined with more paperwork. Yet small and medium businesses surprisingly still compose a sizeable portion of the nation’s existing workforce if statistics are correct. “For the small-business sector there is just too much uncertainty about what happens beyond 2010,” says Brian Bethune at Global Insight. Don’t be confused. The small business sector is hardly “the private sector” that government parades.

The federal government is looking at big business and multinationals, which are the only ones with enough power, influence and Washington lobby to evade and manipulate national rules. “At the federal level, there’s uncertainty about tax rates, health care costs, energy costs. You also have what’s going on at the state and local levels, with new fees and taxes. They’re reluctant to jump back in.” The small business optimism index fell for the second straight month in December claims the National Federation of Independent Business. Instead, the federal government puts the focus on tinkering with the details, statistics and percentages to play the fool’s game.

According to ABC News, the administration has taken some heat and mockery for using the nebulous statement of jobs being “saved or created” by the $787 billion stimulus program. Now the administration is changing the way stimulus jobs are counted  grounded in a recent memo on December 18 by the Office of Management and Budget. This memo is now conveniently removed from the public domain like the EESA stimulus package details back in October 2008. Continued ploys to hide memos and details from the public haven’t changed. They just build a broken file online that won’t upload. The Obama Administration promised to prove the numbers of jobs that were saved by the program. Now, they have changed their mind

The new slant is this: a stimulus job is defined as a project being funded with stimulus dollars. A job saved is now a person that worked at a company or organization before and will work at the same place afterward. The definition means nothing real. What nonsense. The government cannot magically make jobs appear except through accounting trickery. They ignore the fact that more government funding must create higher taxes and borrowing for the American taxpayer.

A free lunch doesn’t really exist. Someone must pay sooner or later unless the nation indulges in a force majeure. A force majeure would destroy the reliability and strength of the nation, which is already being attacked and degraded by the infantile politics that continue to be in play.

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