Skip to main content

No stimulation in Obama's stimulus package


Gusset plate from I-35 bridge collapse

No stimulation in Obama's stimulus package.

Earlier this week, I reported that here in Arapahoe County, five months after “emergency” stimulus funding was jammed into law, the only money spent (so far) has been to hire administrators like Colorado czar Don Elliman, at an annual salary of $146,034. According to Arapahoe Co officials, no new jobs will be created until the end of this year or next, and even then, the vast majority of those jobs will be contracted out to private industry and will only last a few days of less.

The primary reason for this employment sham is Obama mandating that the money be spent on “green jobs” instead of bridge and road repairs. After the I-35 Bridge over the Mississippi collapsed, Obama didn’t miss an opportunity to bemoan the “crumbling” conditions of America’s infrastructure, due (he claimed) to President Bush spending all our money to illegally occupy Iraq.

The Minnesota freeway bridge fell because the original contractor used steel plates, called gussets (to anchor the angled beams) that were too thin and construction crews placed too heavy a load on the weakest portion of that bridge. Despite Obama using this human tragedy to push more spending on infrastructure, the real cause of the collapse was a design flaw made 50 years before that fateful August day. The final NTSB report said that the gussets (used in the Minneapolis span) weren’t structurally sound enough to meet safety margins, even in the 1960s.

So, even though Obama misrepresented the bridge collapse to manufacture the “infrastructure” issue and then parlayed that deception into pushing “shovel ready” unskilled construction jobs, as his rationale for rushing through massive stimulus spending – he then threw a “monkey wrench” into everything, by forcing his Green Agenda down everyone’s throat. Instead of being able to reactivate previously submitted and reviewed (but unfunded) general construction projects, local units of government had to start from scratch by issuing new Request for Proposals (RFP).

In addition to delaying the creation of “stimulus” jobs, Obama, by going [for the] green, has taken away jobs from the millions of unemployed and ear-marked the money for highly-skilled electricians, plumbers and HVAC mechanics, already employed by private businesses. And if that wasn’t enough, those jobs won’t even start any time soon and when the do, they’ll provide only a few days work for a very few contractors, whose companies are probably going to be putting other paying jobs on hold, while they make a few extra bucks at the government trough.

Meanwhile, fifteen states have depleted their unemployment insurance funds, forcing them to borrow from the U.S. Treasury. In all, 30 states are now expected to borrow $17 billion by next year, according to Rick McHugh of the National Employment Law Project, a nonpartisan advocacy group. State-run unemployment insurance programs tax revenues are falling at the very time that benefit demands are rising.

Nine million Americans are currently receiving jobless benefits, triple the number when Obama and the democrat Congress rammed the $787 Billion Stimulus through, by promising that there were “shovel ready” infrastructure repair projects that would put unemployed Americans to work, right away. Experts now predict the number of recipients will peak this summer, just as unemployment benefits start to run out, even after they were extended up to 59 weeks.