Your Stimulus At Work – Best Of Taranto 11.4.09

Before we get to all the saved jobs, here are two Items of interest and amusement…

"As if hoping to avoid the outcome," FoxNews.com reports in a postelection roundup, "the White House issued a statement after the GOP win in Virginia saying the president was not watching election returns and would not be making any remarks on the results."

He's president of the United States, after all. What are mere governors' races to him? He just doesn't care. True, he doesn't not care enough to refrain from putting out a statement letting you know how little he cares. So he cares a little. He's only human; it hurts to lose. But he's got it in perspective. He's focusing on himself right now.

Man, is he ever focusing on himself! NewsBusters.org reports on what he was doing last night when he was ignoring the election returns:

During the 10AM ET hour of America's Newsroom on Fox News Channel, fill-in co-host Martha Maccallum told viewers what President Obama watched on election night while Democrats suffered big losses in New Jersey and Virginia: "Robert Gibbs said, well, he was actually watching, you know, the HBO special about his year-long campaign and how it all went."

Good Lord, we've gone and put Norma Desmond in the White House. He is big. It's the elections that got small.

 

Next is a great moment in Canadian health care…

Vial Antibodies
If you want a swine flu shot in Canada, you may be out of luck, Toronto's Globe and Mail reports:

Bulk shipments of the main component of the H1N1 vaccine made at a Quebec plant are being exported to other countries, as Canadians line up for hours for the scarce influenza shots.

GlaxoSmithKline, which has the sole contract to supply Canada's flu vaccine, says it can produce more antigen than it can expeditiously put into vials for Canadians, and has been exporting excess amounts overseas.

This reminds us of the time a restaurant was unable to fill our order for an elephant ear sandwich on rye because it had run out of rye bread.

 

And now the main point…

Close Enough for Government Work
"President Barack Obama's economic recovery program saved 935 jobs at the Southwest Georgia Community Action Council, an impressive success story for the stimulus plan," the Associated Press reports.

Hey, great news! Just one little problem: "Only 508 people work there." The story continues:

The Georgia nonprofit's inflated job count is among persisting errors in the government's latest effort to measure the effect of the $787 billion stimulus plan despite White House promises last week that the new data would undergo an "extensive review" to root out errors discovered in an earlier report.

About two-thirds of the 14,506 jobs claimed to be saved under one federal office, the Administration for Children and Families at Health and Human Services, actually weren't saved at all, according to a review of the latest data by The Associated Press. Instead, that figure includes more than 9,300 existing employees in hundreds of local agencies who received pay raises and benefits and whose jobs weren't saved.

You read that right: Civil servants got pay raises, and the Obama administration claims credit for "saving" their jobs:

Officials defended the practice of counting raises as saved jobs.

"If I give you a raise, it is going to save a portion of your job," HHS spokesman Luis Rosero said.

Aren't you excited to think that these people may soon be in charge of your health care?

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About tedwest

A longtime veteran of comedy and political forums, I decided that I needed a more restful venue because... well... I finally hate everybody. Except my wife that is... and my ex-wife.. and... no, that's about it. I lead about as simple a life as one can, preferring activities that include anything that doesn't involve going out and seeing YOU! And I particularly enjoy what I call "Get the Bitch" movies on Lifetime. You know the ones where the intended victim finally does something so incredibly stupid that she forfeits her right to live, and from that moment on you're rooting for the stalker. Of course, it rarely works out the way you want, but when it does, the feeling you get is... well, there's nothing else like it, other than, maybe, eating chocolate chip cookies. Oh, and I'm proudly anti-wildlife, both foreign and domestic, and anti-environment - especially foreign environments. I think Howard Stern put it best when he said, "If fifty percent of the population died tomorrow, I can live with that." And I feel the same about the other fifty percent, so together, we've pretty much got it all covered.
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