Send money quick!

Thu, Feb 18, 2010


The Colorado Fiscal Policy Institute issued a pair of interesting papers Tuesday, detailing the economic impact of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, otherwise known as “the stimulus.”

Whether you think that ARRA is a perfect example of a spendthrift government run amok, or a rational federal response to the greatest economic crisis since the 1930s, one thing seems clear.

Like it or not, ARRA has a substantial and easily quantified impact. At least 33,000 Coloradans are still employed, thanks to the stimulus, and many more have received tangible benefits. Not sure about the estimate (see below) of 3,834,776 though – my arithmetic says 3,834, 771.

More seriously, such outlandish precision is highly suspect, and tempts one to believe that the rest of the figures may be equally bogus. But even if the numbers are off by 50 or 60 percent, ARRA has made a difference.

As an impecunious geezer/journalist, I was delighted to get a check for $250 as a reward for geezerdom. And rather than save the money, I thought it my patriotic duty to stimulate the economy, particularly that segment represented by my favorite bar/restaurant in Old Colorado City.

Here are a few stats:

At least 33,000 jobs retained or created, including:

• 13,173 through the Department of Transportation

• 3,397 at colleges and universities

• 1,699 in corrections

• 462 in K-12 education

• 421 in weatherization

• 313 at arts organizations

• 281 in science and research

• 250 for water infrastructure improvement

• 71 in law enforcement

Coloradans directly helped: 3,834,776:

• 1.8 million families, Making Work Pay tax credit

• 500,000 one-time $250 Social Security payments

• 463,000 people have had the severity of poverty reduced

• 371,389 people received 13.6 percent increase in food stamps

• 357,767 people received job search assistance

• 306,906 people received extra emergency food assistance

• 196,776 laid-off workers received increased unemployment benefits

• 157,666 homes benefited from upgraded wastewater systems

• 71,904 homes benefited from upgraded drinking-water systems

• 70,000 people lifted above the poverty line

• 52,000 people received increased Pell Grants for college tuition

• 7,000 low-income seniors received extra meals

• 1,929 people received job training

• 1,500 homes were weatherized.

The complete reports are available at

Let’s see-I think I fall into at least three separate categories. I got the $250, which I used for extra meals (including extra glasses of wine), and I had the severity of my poverty reduced. See what a difference $250 makes? And if you think that’s nothing, just send me a check for any amount up to $250. I promise to stimulate the economy, starting tonight at 6 p.m.

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2 Comments For This Post

  1. Thomas Says:

    If you honestly think the “stimulus” package was a good thing for the economy and job creation, I’ve got some land in southern Florida for ya’. (Glad to hear that 33,000 Coloradans are still employed though. Wow!)

    I own a business, and since the stimulus package kicked in and the economy responded so well, I’ve had to let folks go, reduced folks to part-time hourly (losing salary and benefits) and we may not be done yet. I am scared to death that another “jobs” stimulus bill will further “help our economy” and I’ll have to let all these newly part-time employees go (there’s a “jobs bill” for ya’!)

    Taking money from the private sector and moving it into the public (government) sector will NEVER be good for our economy (and it certainly isn’t good for promoting liberty). Government needs to get out and stay out of our wallets, out of our freedoms, and out of the private sector (GM still can’t sell cars, so what’ next?) Reduce personal and corporate taxes, let free markets be free, promote creativity and entrepreneurship and the economy will once again grow and jobs will be plentiful.

  2. Brad Foster Says:

    I’m with ya Thomas. You are spot on. I can’t hardly wait for November. I don’t care whether the congessmen pu for election is Republican or a Demacrat, I’m voting for the new guy. Just to get the existing self serving knukle head out.