GAO says 50,000 jobs were claimed to be created on projects that spent no money

Rick Moran
This is beyond incredible, beyond surreal. Freud couldn't invent a nightmare this bad. Wes Craven would be hard pressed to make a scary enough horror movie about it.

Only Shakespeare could do justice to this tale. And even the master tragedian might get stuck worrying about whether anyone could ever believe the plot.

According to the non-partisan Government Accountability Office, more than 50,000 jobs the administration says were "saved or created" as a result of the stim bill are from projects where no money has been spent as yet.

Jonathan Karl and Matthew Jaffe of ABC News:

More than 50,000 jobs, or one out of every 10 jobs the White House says were "saved or created" by their economic stimulus plan, came from projects that reported spending no money yet, according to a government report obtained by ABC News.

The report by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) analyzes the Administration's October 2009 report on jobs saved or created by the $787 billion stimulus program and finds a "range of significant reporting and processing problems that need to be addressed."

[...]

- The new GAO report finds that 58,386 of the more than 640,000 "saved or created" jobs listed on recovery.gov are from stimulus projects where no money has yet been spent.-On the flip side, the report finds nearly 10,000 projects that report spending a total of $965 million without creating any jobs at all.

The report also raises questions about how closely the contracts are being monitored. Twenty-five percent of the more than 130,000 primary contracts listed were not marked as having been reviewed by any government agency, and less than 1 percent of subcontracts were reviewed.

While the administrations Web site, recovery.gov provides detailed information on more than 130,000 stimulus contracts, representing 90 percent of all contracts, the GAO report says "questions remain about the other 10 percent."

The GAO is giving the administration kudos for their "transparency." A little less transparency and a little more job creation, please. The fact is, people will pay little attention to this, or other efforts to audit the original White House claims about jobs "saved or created" and the White House knows this. The only thing that the vast majority of people know is that the stim bill is working because the president said so.

For someone claiming transparency in government, it is a legitimate question to ask why the president felt it necessary to throw out a number of jobs saved or created at all? If the likelihood was that this number was bound to change dramatically - and it's going down all the time - why throw it out there in the first place?

Real transparency would have been to collect the reports, make the estimate of jobs created after digesting all the data, and then put the whole thing out there for people to pick through. 

This way, Obama gets to keep his fake number as the data people will remember while reaping the benefits of appearing to be "transparent."

Incredible.

 

This is beyond incredible, beyond surreal. Freud couldn't invent a nightmare this bad. Wes Craven would be hard pressed to make a scary enough horror movie about it.

Only Shakespeare could do justice to this tale. And even the master tragedian might get stuck worrying about whether anyone could ever believe the plot.

According to the non-partisan Government Accountability Office, more than 50,000 jobs the administration says were "saved or created" as a result of the stim bill are from projects where no money has been spent as yet.

Jonathan Karl and Matthew Jaffe of ABC News:

More than 50,000 jobs, or one out of every 10 jobs the White House says were "saved or created" by their economic stimulus plan, came from projects that reported spending no money yet, according to a government report obtained by ABC News.

The report by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) analyzes the Administration's October 2009 report on jobs saved or created by the $787 billion stimulus program and finds a "range of significant reporting and processing problems that need to be addressed."

[...]

- The new GAO report finds that 58,386 of the more than 640,000 "saved or created" jobs listed on recovery.gov are from stimulus projects where no money has yet been spent.

-On the flip side, the report finds nearly 10,000 projects that report spending a total of $965 million without creating any jobs at all.

The report also raises questions about how closely the contracts are being monitored. Twenty-five percent of the more than 130,000 primary contracts listed were not marked as having been reviewed by any government agency, and less than 1 percent of subcontracts were reviewed.

While the administrations Web site, recovery.gov provides detailed information on more than 130,000 stimulus contracts, representing 90 percent of all contracts, the GAO report says "questions remain about the other 10 percent."

The GAO is giving the administration kudos for their "transparency." A little less transparency and a little more job creation, please. The fact is, people will pay little attention to this, or other efforts to audit the original White House claims about jobs "saved or created" and the White House knows this. The only thing that the vast majority of people know is that the stim bill is working because the president said so.

For someone claiming transparency in government, it is a legitimate question to ask why the president felt it necessary to throw out a number of jobs saved or created at all? If the likelihood was that this number was bound to change dramatically - and it's going down all the time - why throw it out there in the first place?

Real transparency would have been to collect the reports, make the estimate of jobs created after digesting all the data, and then put the whole thing out there for people to pick through. 

This way, Obama gets to keep his fake number as the data people will remember while reaping the benefits of appearing to be "transparent."

Incredible.