Guys, the stimulus totally worked

Posted: February 25, 2012 by socklessjoe in Conservatism, Fun With Media, Lame, Notes on the Revolution, Op/Sped

Yep, that’s the word from the Center for American Progress:


Ridiculous? Sure.  The problem is that otherwise smart people are believing this.

H.L. Mencken:

[T]he intelligent, like the unintelligent, are responsive to propaganda…


And by “otherwise smart”, I mean two of my friends who happen to be math professors. Yeah, you read that right — not just one, but two math PhDs shared this on their facebook pages. Not medieval French literature. Not womyn’s studies.  Math.

Now, just off the top of  my head, I can think of a few big problems with this video.  First, they’re only looking at the latest recession cycle, and not comparing it to other cycles, where we all know the comparison is not flattering.  Second, they’re using GDP as an absolute rather than as %growth or annualized %growth by quarter.  When you look at GDP growth, it’s more clear that Obama’s policies created a “thud” rather than a bang.  Third, they’re ignoring the other contemporaneous massive interventions like TARP, various Fed and Treasury programs on the order of a couple hundred billion, and the Fed’s extremely aggressive monetary loosening.  Fourth, the causal link from stimulus to economic improvement doesn’t even exist, at least not for the immediate impact that they’re implying. By the end of the second quarter of 2009 only about 8% of the stimulus had been spent.  It took them until about June of 2010 to spend half of it, and by June of 2011 they had still only spent 83% of it. (Those dates being when I randomly chose to check in on the stimulus and take screen-caps of

How many quarters of GDP growth and jobs numbers were “worse than expected”, to the point where economic expectations were almost a free-standing punchline?

I could probably go on, but I know I’m preaching to the choir here.  Further debunkery is left as an exercise for the reader.  Now back to the video, and its purpose.

People who are otherwise smart, and who still have their jobs, are going to see some modest growth figures for the economy and say, “yeah sure”.  The video is allows otherwise smart people to continue to believe what they want to believe, which is that Obama is doing okay, and that they didn’t make a mistake when they voted for him in 2008.  It’s intellectual cover.

See, those smart guys made some graphs, and everything is cool.

In completely unrelated news, I’m hearing anecdotal evidence of ammunition shortages this year.  If the polls don’t improve after the GOP convention, I think you’re going to see a rehash of 2008-2009 for guns and ammo sales/shortages.

  1. jp says:

    You may want to refer your math professor friends to this free online book:

    They could also take microeconomics 101, which covers it all from a mathematical perspective.

  2. veeshir says:

    ‘m not watching the vid (I have my standards after all), but I would have to say the stimulizing did work in its intended purpose.

    It siphoned off a $trillion or more of our money for left-wing groups, other Dem donors and voting fraud agencies (Acorn).

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