White House: We can’t create more jobs and it’s all President Bush’s fault
What happened to all of those “shovel-ready” jobs anyway?
March 16 (Bloomberg) — U.S. employers won’t hire enough workers this year to lower the jobless rate much below the level of 9.7 percent reached in February, three Obama administration economic officials said today.
The proportion of Americans who can’t find work is likely to “remain elevated for an extended period,” Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner, White House budget director Peter Orszag and Christina Romer, chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, said in a joint statement. The officials said unemployment may even rise “slightly” over the next few months as discouraged workers start job-hunting again.
This a startling admission from a White House that is big on illusory messaging. The message here is two-fold. First, it’s actually a smart move as it acknowledges that Democrats are really, really toast come November (it will be interesting to see how the healthcare vote plays into this). After Scott Brown’s victory in January, the administration said it was pivoting towards jobs as opposed to pushing the Obama-legacy agenda. Besides a placebo jobs bill that was signed today, the administration’s efforts on jobs creation is invisible.
Lastly, this is essentially an acknowledgement that the stimulus bill was a waste of time. Sure there will be wailing and lamentations from the left that $800 billion wasn’t big enough or that it wasn’t spent “correctly” or even that it hasn’t been spent at all. The fact is that the majority of the expenditures in the stimulus was used to plug in state budget holes and to fund safety net programs and these are hardly job-stimulating endeavors.
But of course, no acknowledgement of an Obama failure would be complete without some Bush bashing:
The officials put the greatest blame for the high budget deficits on “years of poor decisions” during the administration of George W. Bush, citing enactment of the Medicare prescription drug benefit and income-tax cuts without corresponding budget savings to pay for them.
You see, when President Bush added to the deficit (and I agree that the spending policies of the Bush years were outrageous) it severely inhibits the ability of future Presidents to stabilize the economy. When President Obama does it, it’s for our own good.