Tag Archives: Stimulus

News & Comment

Initial Jobless Claims Fall to Lowest Level Since Clinton Left Office


“The number of people who applied for U.S. jobless benefits fell 23,000 to 264,000 in the week that ended Oct. 11, hitting the lowest level since April 2000, showing that employers are laying off few workers, according to government data released Thursday,” Marketwatch reports. April 2000 was three months after Pres. Clinton left office. The chart above from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that employment never recovered during the six years Republicans controlled the White House and both houses of Congress. The chart also shows that unemployment surged in advance of the financial collapse on Bush’s watch and only began to recover very slowly after the Stimulus kicked in. It’s impossible to say how much more quickly employment might have rebounded if Republicans in Congress and GOP governors hadn’t deliberately stalled the recovery by cutting funding to government services and employment.

More from Marketwatch:

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News & Comment

Paul Ryan Was a Vocal Advocate for Bush’s Stimulus Bills: ‘You Have to Spend a Little to Grow a Little,’ He Said in 2002

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Last week Congressman Paul Ryan was caught lying about the fact that after he voted against the stimulus bill he requested at least $25 million in stimulus funding for his district. Now, via Huffington Post, we learn that in 2002 he was a strong advocate of Republican efforts to pass George Bush’s stimulus bills:

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News & Comment

Ryan Caught Lying: ‘I Never Asked for Stimulus’ – But Documents Prove He Earmarked At Least $25 Mil

Think Progress:

On Tuesday, the Boston Globe and Associated Press reported on documents showing that GOP Vice Presidential candidate Paul Ryan had secured more than $20 million in stimulus funds for a local energy efficiency organization.

According to the reports, the documents showed that Ryan also brought in $5.4 million for local bus services. His requests came at the same time he was publicly calling the stimulus a “wasteful spending spree.”

However, in an interview with a local Ohio television news station, Ryan claimed he never secured funding through the program, saying “I never asked for stimulus.”

The Associated Press wrote a follow-up story to Ryan’s comments:

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News & Comment

Chart: The First Stimulus Rescued the Economy from Free Fall into Depression

Chart created by RMS/MSNBC and enhanced by Pensito Review to show Bush era and period when Stimulus kicks in
Chart created by RMS/MSNBC and enhanced by Pensito Review to show Bush era and period when Stimulus kicks in

Transcript from the Rachel Maddow Show on MSNBC, Sept. 8, 2011:

RACHEL MADDOW at 03:32: In December 2009, the White House recognized that we needed more stimulus — that we had done some good with the previous stimulus but more was needed. The problem was really bad. But nothing materialized. We got health [care] reform but we didn’t get a second stimulus.

There has essentially been no additional stimulus for the economy since [the first round in early 2009].

And since then — here’s the most important thing — since then, we have also learned that the whole problem that the stimulus was designed to address — the whole economic problem was way, way worse than we thought it was, even when we thought it was really bad.

Remember how I said the economy shrank by half a percent in the third quarter of 2008? Shrank by half a percent in the third quarter of 2008. That’s what we originally thought.

Turns out it did not shrink by half a percent. It actually shrank by 3.7 percent.

Remember that big, scary 3.8 percent that we thought that economy shrank by in the last quarter of 2008? Turns out it wasn’t 3.8 percent. Actually it was 8.9 percent. That is not a typo. That’s how fast the economy was shrinking.

Republicans look at this chain of events and say, “Ah, see, well the Stimulus didn’t work.”

Everybody else looks at these numbers and says, “Well, the Stimulus did something, but giuven what we now know about what we were up against, it’s clear that it was not enough.”

It’s clear that we actually did need that second round of stimulus the president was sort of pushing for back in December 2009, but not that hard.

What we’re seeing now in the economy is the effect of not getting further stimulus. Not only that the economy has proven to be resiliently bad, but also because it was way worse than we thought it was when we initially designed the things we that we were going to do to try to fix it.

The hope is that it is not too late. But time’s up and we gotta do something.


Obama Recovery Continues to Work


Number of new jobs added in February, dropping unemployment to 8.9%, and providing more evidence that the stimulus measures enacted by the Obama administration were effective.


Republicans Desperately Want You to Believe The Stimulus Failed, But Facts Tell a Different Story

GOP House leader John Boehner and other Republicans insist stimulus spending was a waste. But did the Recovery act fail?

NO. According to the Economic Policy Institute:

The Recovery Act was enacted at a time when the private economy was contracting by more than a 6 percent annual rate and losing more than 750,000 jobs a month. In the first full quarter after its enactment, the Recovery Act had cut average monthly private job losses by more than a third and slowed the economic contraction to a -0.7 percent annual rate… EPI analysis shows that by the end of 2010 the Recovery Act had created or saved 3 million to 4 million jobs, and up to 5 million full-time equivalent jobs. It had also boosted gross domestic product by up to $560 billion and reduced the unemployment rate up to 1.8 percentage points.