Sunday, March 15, 2009

Saved or created?

It hit me while driving someplace, maybe a month ago -- the President was talking about the outcome of his stimulus package and he used the now oft-repeated phrase about three and half million jobs, "saved or created."
(freepik image added January, 2015)

I'm hearing it again as I watch one of his acolytes on "Meet The Press" and so I'll ask you...

how does one measure a job saved?  How can one record a job loss that didn't occur, but might have occurred under different circumstances?

Data on new jobs are obviously available and broadly watched -- but jobs saved?  It seems like a clever mechanism to avoid any rigorous assessment of the relative success or failure of the stimulus plan.

What's actually been created, is a new rhetorical device called "jobs saved" that is designed to portray an anemic employment picture, as something more robust.