A White House Stimulus report published Friday defies public opinion about the stimulus package with facts that show it was well planned and executed. But since its creation the stimulus has turn into politically radioactive. Most economists agree that the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act is well managed, well executed and stopped the economy from getting even worse than it might have. But the slow recovery and high unemployment have disillusioned the public and given Republicans the talking point of a “failed stimulus”.
Deadline of Recovery Act met
February 2009 was when President Obama got around to signing off the economic stimulus package. About 750,000 jobs a month had been lost at the time when the private-sector imploded, accounts the Washington Post. Top priority went to those who were willing to take quick action. 70 percent of the stimulus was to be sent out within the first 18 months of the program. The white House stimulus report implies that deadline has been met. Everyone that was a victim of the economic recession, including families, unemployed workers and businesses, got tax breaks meaning $551 billion of the $787 billion is spent. An extra $127 billion will be added on. Republican predictions of massive stimulus fraud proved unfounded. Criminal investigation doesn’t happen really much. Only .2 % of contracts require this to happen.
Almost no fraud with the stimulus
The economic stimulus package was not just thrown out there with any oversight. In fact, the Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board was in charge of overseeing it. TIME reports the board uses computer algorithms to track suspicious spending patterns. TIME spoke using the leader of the board, Earl Devaney, who stated that “you’d be crazy to steal from the Recovery Act; it is way too transparent, with each dollar traceable at www.recovery.gov, and there are way too numerous eyes on it.” But TIME said transparency has had a political cost. Republican senators have crowed about projects they have branded as wasteful, for instance $18,500 to paint a mural in Montana.
Politics using the stimulus
The joblessness stayed 1 to 2 % lower than it might have been without the stimulus, states the Congressional Budget Office. It created about 3.5 million brand new jobs. Mother Jones said, writes Keven Jones, that the policy is being taken seriously which is why there are outcomes. Drum also says that that most people don’t care whether or not a policy is a good one and executed correctly which is obvious from the stimulus. The Recovery Act being a bust is the opinion that two-thirds of Americans have right now. This is because the administration predicted the stimulus would reduce unemployment to 8 percent. Nobody would say that it was a “failed stimulus” if they had forecasted the joblessness rate to be closer to the actual numbers.