On Monday, America marked the fifth anniversary of the $787 billion stimulus bill, which was supposed to radically reduce unemployment and spur economic growth – and the White House labeled the stimulus package an overwhelming success. Council of Economic Advisers Chairman Jason Furman stated that the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 “had a substantial positive impact on the economy, helped to avert a second Great Depression, and made targeted investments that will pay dividends long after the Act has fully phased out.”
The Council of Economic Advisors says that the stimulus “saved or created” some 6 million job-years – a job year is one job for one year.
Furman continued, “Because the report released today focuses exclusively on the effects of fiscal legislation, it does not assess other Administration policies that stabilized the financial system, rescued the auto industry, and supported the housing sector—all actions that made significant contributions to spurring the recovery.”
Furman touted the fact that the economy has been growing, albeit slowly, for 11 quarters. He stated, “While far more work remains to ensure that the economy provides opportunity for every American, there can be no question that President Obama’s actions to date have laid the groundwork for stronger, more sustainable economic growth in the years ahead.”
In reality, the Obama administration’s fiscal policies have produced the slowest recovery in American history. The administration projected that with the stimulus, the unemployment rate would be 5.0 percent by the end of 2013. Without the stimulus, the administration projected that the unemployment rate would be 5.0 percent by the end of 2013. Instead, the unemployment rate at the end of December 2013 was 6.7 percent, with a wildly depressed rate of labor force participation.