If you cannot measure it, it's baloney

Marco Milaneci

Nancy Pelosi is back on the stump, once again claiming that the 2009 stimulus package "saved" jobs.  Evidently she and the other progressives have finally backed away from their fable that jobs were actually created.  She specifically stated that unemployment would have hit 14.5% without the $787 billion legislation.  Give it time, Nance.  We've already exceeded that figure if you count the demoralized job seekers who have given up looking.  But, one need only look around at the suffering to know there has been no appreciable benefit from what I personally believe was a Democrat slush fund.  It's par for the course that Pelosi cites no freestanding studies nor compelling measurements to back this up.  Rick Moran was kind enough to provide solid evidence to the contrary, in a December 2010 blog entry.

The problem I have is not so much this one crack from the most economically unsavvy person ever to occupy the office of Speaker of the House.  I've come to expect such incompetence from anyone who would make the intellectually insulting claim that unemployment checks create jobs.  It's the larger issue that frosts me -- the pretext that educated people like us should take unprovable assertions as gospel, with no hint of independent verification.

I run a Sarbanes-Oxley IT compliance program at a large corporation in the private sector.  On a weekly basis, I have to report real numbers to our executives.  They include things like numbers of open internal audit findings, numbers of open findings by our external auditor, and controls that are automated vs. manual.  Naturally, these have to be supportable with concrete evidence.  If my own reports conflict with those of our independent auditor, whom do you think my senior leadership team is going to believe?  What about our investors?  I may be in a position of authority at our company, but they're not going to believe me alone, and they shouldn't.

Unfortunately, the Pelosi brand of arrogance is not limited to career politicians.  Even the private sector has a few entitlement types who have to be dragged kicking and screaming into reporting measurements of their work.  You can spot their contradictions a mile away.  These are the same people who keep their own mental scorecards, cheerfully taking full credit for a collaborative effort, while going unstable when others dare accept partial props.  They're never happy for co-workers who get rewards because it is they who supposedly pull all the weight.  But, don't even think about asking for outside confirmation of their indispensability.  That wouldn't be fair. 

Isn't it grand how progressivism sucks the greatness out of every level of a society?

Perhaps it's time for all Americans to channel our inner auditor.  Whether it's an employee wanting his or her manager to allocate increasingly limited funds without any hard data, or Debbie Wassermann-Schultz yowling that it's "baloney" to say the stimulus didn't work, the reponse from all thinking individuals should be the same -- Show me, don't tell me.

Marco Milaneci is an IT Compliance Program Manager at a Fortune 500 company.  He can be reached at mmblog [at] austin.rr.com.

Nancy Pelosi is back on the stump, once again claiming that the 2009 stimulus package "saved" jobs.  Evidently she and the other progressives have finally backed away from their fable that jobs were actually created.  She specifically stated that unemployment would have hit 14.5% without the $787 billion legislation.  Give it time, Nance.  We've already exceeded that figure if you count the demoralized job seekers who have given up looking.  But, one need only look around at the suffering to know there has been no appreciable benefit from what I personally believe was a Democrat slush fund.  It's par for the course that Pelosi cites no freestanding studies nor compelling measurements to back this up.  Rick Moran was kind enough to provide solid evidence to the contrary, in a December 2010 blog entry.

The problem I have is not so much this one crack from the most economically unsavvy person ever to occupy the office of Speaker of the House.  I've come to expect such incompetence from anyone who would make the intellectually insulting claim that unemployment checks create jobs.  It's the larger issue that frosts me -- the pretext that educated people like us should take unprovable assertions as gospel, with no hint of independent verification.

I run a Sarbanes-Oxley IT compliance program at a large corporation in the private sector.  On a weekly basis, I have to report real numbers to our executives.  They include things like numbers of open internal audit findings, numbers of open findings by our external auditor, and controls that are automated vs. manual.  Naturally, these have to be supportable with concrete evidence.  If my own reports conflict with those of our independent auditor, whom do you think my senior leadership team is going to believe?  What about our investors?  I may be in a position of authority at our company, but they're not going to believe me alone, and they shouldn't.

Unfortunately, the Pelosi brand of arrogance is not limited to career politicians.  Even the private sector has a few entitlement types who have to be dragged kicking and screaming into reporting measurements of their work.  You can spot their contradictions a mile away.  These are the same people who keep their own mental scorecards, cheerfully taking full credit for a collaborative effort, while going unstable when others dare accept partial props.  They're never happy for co-workers who get rewards because it is they who supposedly pull all the weight.  But, don't even think about asking for outside confirmation of their indispensability.  That wouldn't be fair. 

Isn't it grand how progressivism sucks the greatness out of every level of a society?

Perhaps it's time for all Americans to channel our inner auditor.  Whether it's an employee wanting his or her manager to allocate increasingly limited funds without any hard data, or Debbie Wassermann-Schultz yowling that it's "baloney" to say the stimulus didn't work, the reponse from all thinking individuals should be the same -- Show me, don't tell me.

Marco Milaneci is an IT Compliance Program Manager at a Fortune 500 company.  He can be reached at mmblog [at] austin.rr.com.