Senate Budget Committee hearings are often boring, but sometimes they can be extremely illuminating. And Sen. Judd Gregg’s (R-NH) questioning of OMB Director Jim Nussle adeptly exposes the farce behind this stimulus push:
GREGG: What are we getting for the stimulus package? …. other than being a wonderful political statement that the Congress can join with the administration in a “Kumbaya” event and make everybody feel good, what substantively do we get for this, if we are going to be digging such a deeper hole on the deficit that will make it so much harder for us to deal with the tax policy, which is really important to us, that’s coming down the pike?
NUSSLE: Well, Senator, all of this, of course, is forecasting, based on what economists will tell you, and they may disagree, but in the short term, by the third quarter, they estimate that it could and would bump GDP by six-tenths of a percent. That’s enormous, particularly when you see what that does for job growth, which is also estimated at about 500,000 jobs.
GREGG: Well, that works out to $300,000 per job. Divide 500,000 jobs into $150 billion, and you get $300,000 per job.
NUSSLE: They’re really good jobs.
GREGG: They must be good jobs. Well, they’re going to pay a lot in taxes. I’ll tell you that much.