On Sunday’s Meet the Press Joe Biden defended the $787 billion economic stimulus spending bill pushed through Congress, but said that “everyone guessed wrong” on the impact it would have.

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Ten days before taking office Obama’s economic team released a report predicting unemployment would remain at 8 percent or below through the year if an economic stimulus plan was rushed through Congress (and it was rushed – so much so that no one read it).

The Bureau of Labor Statistics issued a report that unemployment in May rose to 9.4 percent.

Biden said the White House is keenly aware of the gap between the rhetoric used to sell fast passage of the legislation and the reality that has 14.5 million people unemployed.

“No one realized how bad the economy was. The projections, in fact, turned out to be worse. But we took the mainstream model as to what we thought — and everyone else thought — the unemployment rate would be,” Biden said.

“At the time our forecast seemed reasonable. Now, looking back, it was clearly too optimistic,” he told reporters last Monday.”

“Everyone guessed wrong at the time the estimate was made about what the state of the economy was at the moment this was passed,” Biden said.

At least Biden admits it was a “guess”.

Perhaps the Stimulus Package has done little to help the number of jobs lost because most of it has yet to be spent. Only 6 percent of the funds have been disbursed.

According to Hans Bader from Open Market.org the stimulus package is harming the economy “both by triggering trade wars that have cost at least 40,000 jobs, and by driving up interest rates for businesses that need to borrow money to expand or create jobs.”

As economist Arnold Kling explains, “most of the stimulus spending does not take place until next year and beyond, so the short-run gains are puny. On the other hand, the big increase in the projected deficit creates the expectation of higher interest rates, which raises interest rates now. These higher interest rates serve to weaken the economy. According to this standard analysis, the stimulus is going to hurt GDP now, when we could use the most help. Much of the spending will kick in a year or more from now,” when the economy will already be in recovery, and “when the economy will need little, if any, stimulus. This is the flaw with using spending rather than tax cuts as a stimulus. The lags are longer when you use spending. Of course, if the real goal is to promote government at the expense of civil society” through “political favoritism, then the stimulus is working exactly as intended.”

Another Biden admission: “There are going to be mistakes made. . . . We know some of this money is going to be wasted.”

Oh, ok. Thanks for letting us know. I’m glad he knows, and accepts that tax payer money will be wasted. What happened to the online transparency that would allow us to see exactly where and how this money will be spent? Can’t we do something to avoid wasting the money on projects like these:

In Minneapolis, the City Council voted recently to spend $2 million in stimulus funds on a vacant 99-year-old theater that developers want to convert into a center for dance. The project would create about 48 permanent jobs, city documents indicate.

In the competition for the limited stimulus money, the council awarded less than $300,000 to a company that wants to open a solar-energy-panel manufacturing plant that would create 360 jobs by 2011, according to city records.

Because the solar plant didn’t get more funding, its chief executive officer, Joel Cannon, said he wouldn’t be able to open the plant in Minneapolis.

Or this one:

It is a six-mile stretch of guardrail near a manufactured lake in a desolate patch of the Oklahoma Panhandle. There’s little reason for anyone to visit. Weeds are overgrown; the lake bed is virtually dry.

Yet repairing the guardrail is on a list of projects developed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to tap into President Obama’s $787-billion economic stimulus program. The price tag: more than $1.1 million.

As Obama moves to accelerate the flow of federal stimulus funds, public officials are voicing concerns that some of the projects being devised are of dubious merit.

Bill Beach, director of the Center for Data Analysis at the Heritage Foundation, said the unemployment figures are likely to rise even if the economy recovers soon from this worst economic downturn in decades. That is because recessions follow a typical pattern.

“Unemployment usually continues to rise for around six months after the economy has recovered,” he said. “I would expect the unemployment rate to rise into the middle of 2010,” Beach said. As for the length of the recession, economists differ. “I fully expect the recession to be over in the next several months,” Beach said.

Barry Bosworth, former presidential advisor and senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, however, said the downturn is still getting worse and that there are still no signs of a turnaround. As there is no increase in production, there will be no growth in employment, he said.

A Rasmussen poll last week showed that only 39% believed that stimulus spending would help the economy, compared with 44% who said it wouldn’t.

The poll also showed that 45% of respondents believed the stimulus program should be canceled, compared with 36% who wanted to keep it going.

This is the first time in more than two years that this poll has shown that voters trust Republicans more than Democrats (45 percent to 39 percent) with the economy, perhaps a sign of the effect of the GM and Chrysler bankruptcies (the poll was taken right after GM announced its bankruptcy).”

So…what do you think? Money well (yet to be) spent?

Bill Beach said in the article that if there is one silver lining in this recession, it is that it could spur a rash of entrepreneurialism.

When people are laid off, many opt to start their own businesses. While many new ventures fail, some become successful and grow, creating more jobs.

Recessions are also a good time for entrepreneurs to secure a labor force, as the pool of unemployed people is large and many will jump at a job opportunity, he said.

Well, there’s some good news. So, who has the next big idea? I wish I would have invented the Snuggie…

  • A-Rod
  • Ginger

    Snarfel the garfunkt! I watched that interview on Sun morn and just couldn’t believe that “they” (meaning him) thought the economy could be recovered by a pork stim pkg w/ no stipulations because “they” thought it wasn’t that bad. I wonder, did “they” mean for all 57 states?

  • TexasMirth

    ‘The rule is, jam to-morrow and jam yesterday – but never jam to-day.’ The White Queen tells Alice.
    ‘It MUST come sometimes to “jam to-day,”‘ Alice objected.
    ‘No, it can’t,’ said the Queen. ‘It’s jam every OTHER day: to-day isn’t any OTHER day, you know.’

    and –

    While many new ventures fail, some become successful and grow, creating more jobs.

    Now, when are those soon-to-be jobs supposed to be here? Yesterday or tomorrow?

    • Onofre’s arm

      The Obama sarcoma has been diagnosed, chemotherapy needs to be started yesterday, tomorrow will be too late, today is reserved for prayer.

  • TeakWoodKite

    “Let’s stand him on his head.” “Now you see it’s morning!”

    or ‘What are you guys doing in my car?”, “The foxtrot, you want the next dance?”

    Firesign Theatre.

    We are screwed to the grill of this out of control 18 wheeler…. Some confuse the wheels on BO’s big rig with the real thing…when in fact just training wheels, sadly we are paying for the training of BO.
    Educating Rita was easier than educating BO when the well being of the middle class is the cost of tuition.

  • Disgusted

    I can’t believe you guys are struggling with this. The unemployment rate (hard data) is not important, jobs created or saved (unable to quantify) is what’s really important. Garr


    • Diana L. C.

      Tell that to the many, many unemployed or to the underemployed who lost hours, benefits, while living with a newly unemployed person.

      • Disgusted

        Went over your head I see. Of course it’s the unemployment rate that is important. Saved and created jobs, a category that you can never really put a number to, seems to have taken over the argument in the current administartion. Let’s not argue hard facts, let’s argue some arbitrary numbers that have no actual meaning. I knew this was going to happen the minute saved jobs became part of the equation. How could you ever prove that Obama did or did not save a job? When all is said and done Obama and his administration will meet their quota on created and saved jobs. The sad thing is most will be of the saved variety.That way he will take no blame for what it is but only recieve the credit for what it could have been.

  • NYSmike

    They are doing the same with healthcare. They will rush something, anything through just to say Mission Accomplished only to realize all of the mistakes later on.

    • Docelder

      Everything is a “crisis” with this administration. They are going to ram down as much as they can and as fast as they can ram it down. They know their time is short and they are trying to make sure that even when they fail we won’t be able to recover from and reverse what they have done. Think of this administration as a coup d’etat. Because, for all practical purposes that is what it is.

  • Lawyer from Missouri

    So you STEAL the taxpayer’s money to Heidelberg, Goldman Sachs and other croonies and then all you have to say is WE GUESS WRONG?

    I know Larry Johnson likes to cuss, but this is some high BS. WTF?

  • Entwife

    If anyone’s mentioned it, I’ve missed it . . .

    Is anyone else thinking WMDs on this? You know, how “everybody” thought there were WMD in Iraq, all the reports and intelligence estimates said there were . . .

    Now we have all the experts and estimates “getting it wrong” in the face of flaccid results of economic stimulation by the stimulus package.

    • Ani

      Well this is in line with the thinking that Pres. Obama is the (D)emocratic version of George Bush — something the NQ has been saying for quite a while.

    • NoBamaNoWay

      i was thinking about how everyone thought the war in iraq was such a good idea and was going to be a “cakewalk.” the reality is that politicians really don’t care about what the right thing to do is; they only care about what the momentarily popular thing to do is.

  • Holy smokes – Biden MUST do a lot of yoga to be able to get into all of those different positions…

    Thanks for this – excellent as always!!

    • Katmoon

      Thus he is able to bend over and kiss his own ass goodbye …

  • Texas Playwright

    I can think of 18 million voters who “guessed” right.

    • Kathy

      Right on!!

    • I’m a Linda too

      You got that right.

  • jbjd

    OMG. First, BO says we ‘guessed’ wrong because we didn’t know how bad the economy was when we plugged the numbers into the econometric model everyone uses to predict what would happen to employment if we passed the stimulus. Then he said the reason much of this stimulus money has not yet made its way into the economy is that states have failed to timely implement the programs this money was meant to fund!

    AGI, while it’s true I would not have viewed this video if you hadn’t posted it, as is so often the case with news I access on this site, I am torn between wanting to thank you and curse you out!

    • jbjd


  • Tex-Mex Soup

    This administration is based on the effing “coulda, shoulda, woulda” philosophy.

    What a damn joke they are

  • Tex-Mex Soup

    This administration is based on the effing “could, shoulda, woulda” philosophy.

    What a damn joke they are

  • mel

    How can that be Joe???

    Obama claimed for over a year that he would get it right one day one!

  • I’m a Linda too

    psst Joe, it seems a slim majority also guessed wrong when they chose poorly Obama as presidenot.

    Wow, dissastisfaction with Obambi is growing. Now only 39 percent think anything will happen from the stimulus, that’s down from the 50’s when it was first passed.

    Funny thing, Obambi can’t spiin the reality the voters are living. Hopium only takes you so far.

    Bud Abbott had Obama’s stimulus and bailout plans nailed 57 years ago!

    Now we understand what his tax policy will be. Thanks Abbott and Costello for demonstrating. Watch the video below.


    • That video is classic. Here, I’ll loan you 40 cents and end up owing you 50.

      • I’m a Linda too

        Doesn’t it sound like Obama’s empty promises of tax cuts? We’re choking here from the cost and tax increases they are proposing and have already promised and we’re not even 6 months in.

        • Chris

          Did you get your taxpayer vacation to Bermuda yet? I didn’t but I got the bill charging me to pay my share for the gitmo guys to go there. See the pictures they sent bac? Swimming, cottages on the beach, drinks. Nice huh? Oh by the way, they still hate America and would blow us all up if they could. But they send their thanks.

  • vireo

    Sounds familiar. “No one anticipated the breach of the levees.”

    I suggest we dub the million $ guardrail “the guardrail of No Man’s Land,” as the OK panhandle used to be called.

  • PaddyJ

    Good to know there’s a real team of seasoned pros relying on solid reason and logic to steer the ship.
    Announcement to all passengers: The Captain said we “guessed wrong” on the location of the iceberg, but hey, that’s blubblubblub…

    • Chris

      Isn’t it nice they “guessed” about spending all that money to be dumped on our heads as debt, but didn’t really know what it was all about. Isn’t it nice they are spending millions sending terrorists on lovely permanent vacations to islands most hardworking Americans, who are paying for it all, will never be able to see for themselves. Isn’t it nice that they are guessing at what healthcare, run by them, will cost and oh by the way, some treatments and tests may only be available to a few of us? Isn’t it nice that so many of our fellow Americans chose to vote for this gang of thieves and are now wondering what hit them? It is truly a sad state of affairs that our own citizens have put us into. I just hope there is a way out and that it comes soon.

  • EWard

    More problems ahead for the US economy…here is an excerpt from an AP article about China and Japan buying less of our debt….

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Foreign demand for long-term U.S. financial assets fell in April as both China and Japan trimmed their holdings of Treasury securities.

    The Treasury Department said Monday that net purchases of stocks, notes and bonds obtained by foreigners fell to $11.2 billion in April, from $55.4 billion in March.

    China, the largest holder of U.S. Treasury securities, trimmed its holdings to $763.5 billion in April, from $767.9 billion in March. Japan, the second largest holder of Treasury securities, reduced its holdings to $685.9 billion, from $686.7 billion a month earlier.

    Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner traveled to Beijing earlier this month to assure the Chinese government that the Obama administration is determined to get control of an exploding U.S. budget deficit, which is projected to hit a record $1.84 trillion this year.

    China’s holdings of Treasury securities represent about 10 percent of America’s publicly held debt.

    …what is Biden talking about making mistakes???? Excuse me, but isn’t this the team that was ready on Day One?

    Obama is deliberately running our economy in the ground to redistribute our wealth. This is one reason the government is so eager to nationalize companies. Why? They do not need Congressional oversight once they own these companies. One more thing, during Geithner’s China speech, the audience was laughing when he mentioned getting US debt under control…. Impeach Obama!!!!!

    • Ani

      Actually, Obama/Biden is the team that professed to be “right on day one.”

      They didn’t tell us there would be so much guessing involved with being right…

  • Docelder

    Well, since Biden is sort of the “Stimulus Commissar”… I wonder if he has read the stimulus bill yet himself? That is kind of a rhetorical question, because we already probably know the answer. But, the “stimulus” bill was never about stimulus. it was about squirreling away the money to finance “change” with. This whole “hope and change” bit is really misdirection. Hope is just the hand we are looking at while the other hand… the change hand operates out of sight. In the end, change will destroy hope.

  • mark connette

    I recall the mccain/palin ticket telling us it was wrong……they had it right

  • It continues to boggle my mind that Biden is such an obvious IDIOT and yet Palin is the one people say is stupid. Sexism at its very best!

    • i KNOW! and how they (they = obama loving liberal media) thought Biden won the VP debate. She whooped his 35 year, FP expert, ass.

      • Scout

        No kidding. I saw one analysis that said Biden’s vocabulary in the debate was at a 5th grade level and Palin’s was at a high school grad level…and then the report continued to say that Biden was so much more informed and intelligent. Talk about ignoring the truth that’s right in front of you.

        She opened up a can of whoop as$ at the repub convention and didn’t close it until the election was over.

  • Biden is such a joke, he can’t even lie without messing up the facts.
    What a bullshi# artist.
    I hope someone is keeping track of those people laid off that have found a job.
    We are in a political nightmare, thanks to these fools playing government!

  • warehouse553

    Hopefully his presidency will collapse before 2012. Republicans need to get their act together. Don’t be afraid of being called racists for opposing this man!

    • lark

      Have you ever confronted an accomplished pathological liar with the truth? It is one’s of the most hap hazard experience you will ever have.

      As an example I give you the mortgage industry. They are an example of an accomplish pathological liar in an institutional capacity. And did you see what was accomplished? Not much.

      Obama, the accomplished liar that he is already confronted his detractors on the speech he was giving and called the presumable opponents, ignorant and liars.

      To oppose pathological liars is simply a nightmare.

      • Diana L. C.

        I agree–know from experience living with two who lied in the face of complete, documented evidence. It was always unbelievable.

  • HARP

    “everyone guessed wrong”….when they voted for this loser.

    • politicalidentitycrisis

      I concur!

      • ConfusedAmerican

        Remember nobody had time to read it —– So it was a very big guessing game.

        • lark

          The socialist health care system and its consequences should be much more simpler to predict. Lets guess how little Joe and Mary will feel about choosing to study medicine and become qualified physicians in the year 2018. No biggie. They wil just have to know all they would have to do is pass the exams. The rest will all be laid out for them in their classes on health care administration. Structure, structure, structure.

          Oh the beauty of structure!

          Oh the beauty of bureaucracy!

          Oh the beauty of dependency!

          Oh the beauty of the regulated State!

          China the beautiful. The model perfect.

          • Docelder

            China the beautiful. The model perfect.

            Just a footnote, in communist China the top income tax rate is 45%. So, China isn’t our model at all. The truth is much worse.

            • Docelder, you got it.

              By the way, the top rate of income tax in the United Kingdom is now 50% (!).

              Punish the successful!

    • running the government is not a guessing game.or spin the bottle.

  • Obama: Dubya II Electric Boogaloo

    We had no idea that the weapons intelligence was wrong on Saddam……

    …oh wait, wrong bamboozler…

  • Peggy Sue

    Biden is incorrect and merely putting a happy face on the economic bungling that’s been going on. Bush&Co started us on this road and the Obama administration is flailing in all directions, pretending things are getting better when they’re not. The grotesque spending and gargantuan deficits are and will continue to make things worse.

    So, please. Everyone did not guess it wrong. We cannot spend our way out of debt. The whole program is crazed and being designed to the help the very thieves on Wall Street that brought us to the brink.

    Barack Obama sold his soul to these conmen. Now he’s selling ours.

  • Tricia Spiegel

    Excellent post. Thanks for it.

    Biden said “we guessed wrong.” Let him speak for himself and others way up there who have no idea what “real people” are experiencing. Even us non-economists knew this plan was not going to work.
    “Shovel-ready” indeed. We know what was being shovelled!

    • Mary

      What Biden DIDN’T say, is that Obama left the Stimulus Bill up to Pelosi’s Congress to write, and they stuffed it pork for their own interests.

      And then later, many of them admitted THEY DIDN’T EVEN READ THE DAMN BILL.

      Just gave Pelosi a “wish list” for everything they wanted but never got in the budget before.

      It was a useless Stimulus Bill, period.

  • ConfusedAmerican

    Now that our government is going broke, and our American citizens are going broke, What Next????

    All I have been hearing on any news show or news commentary show(even the non-Fox connected shows) is how the government is going to have to raise taxes within the next year or two. Most are saying that a tax rise will be needed on everyone not just the higher income people….

    Great job Obama
    Obama’s Great New Changes have leveled the playing field…Government and our Ameican people are now broke or going broke
    Obama’s Great New Hopes have given us all the hope that our grand kids will truly understand what it means to only to pay for your taxes.

    • lark

      What’s next? Socialism. Today’s speech is historic in that it marks the beginning of the socialist march of the Federal government over the country.

      Socialist health system proposed by Obama’s administration and Democrats means a complete transformation of the country’s culture, including people in 2020 working at least 9 months of the year to support the government structure of the country.

      In 2020, the socialist system which will mirror the socialist educational system that will also be build parallel to the socialist medical structure have one thing in common to look forward: poor (personal) performance and political calls to spend more billions (trillions) in bringing the lower poor performing sectors to par with the highest performing sectors. Result, bankruptcy gallore and people working 10 or 11 months of the year to support additional reforms.

      Make sure you raise your children to accept one miserable month of the year to be enough to make them happy with sufficient discretionary income in a month to be enough to cover their personal satisfactions.

      What is historic about today’s speech is that it will mark the beginning of serious talks and efforts by many about succeeding from the Union. No longer the people of the United States will stay feeling united as one nation. Those who do not wish to work 90 percent of their working lives to support the government will opt out of the union by means of many mechanism of rebellion, and many will begin leaving the country as soon as the Democrats begin implementing the socialist health care structure that will be hammered against better sense of fairness.

      Good luck.

      • Docelder

        What’s next? Socialism.

        Hey Lark… no, we are already there. The next step is some sort of change government corporate fascism. But, I don’t mind having health care socialized, we already pay for it, as well as for a lot of socialized services. but responsible people get the shaft as it is. Right now, we have some bastardized hybrid system that penalizes the productive sector, while giving them minimal services in return for what they contribute. I have a paradigm shift, a sort of satori… screw Obama’s Cloward-Piven destruction of this country… we need to tank it ourselves and start again fresh. This fight for America is over and the good guys lost. So what, next time around maybe people will know better.

        • lark

          I applaud that type of thinking and your good understanding of the issues. I am not there yet but moving ever so slowly in that direction. Your points are difficult to accept in one swallow. But certainly I can see very well the desperation ahead. I am appalled that we are so willing to throw away what this country has always represented. Christianity has simply stopped being relevant.