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Frox News Tries To Suggest Stimulus A Waste Of Money

Reported by Guest Blogger - November 2, 2009 -

Guest blogged by Brian

A segment in which Fox News accused the White House of exaggerating the number of jobs created by the stimulus was obviously an attempt to suggest the whole thing was a fraudulent waste of money - without the burden of doing any real investigation. Fortunately, former Congressman Martin Frost nailed them on the tactic. With video.

On Friday's Your World (10/30/09), guest host Stuart Varney said to his guest, Frost, "So the AP yesterday went out and proved that initial claims of job creation for the stimulus package were exaggerated. I put it to you, sir, you cannot prove that the stimulus has saved or created a million jobs."

Frost said, "I never challenged the economic data that the Bush White House put out… The point is… we had a 3.5% increase in GDP in the last quarter. If we hadn't passed the stimulus, that wouldn't have occurred."

Varney answered, "It's fuzzy math, isn’t it?"

"I’ve read the information," Frost said. "There are 600,000 jobs in the public sector and they’re extrapolating from that." He called it “unwise” to “go down this road” of challenging the White House’s numbers.

Varney countered, "You spent $288 billion, that was tax cuts, and that created 350,000 jobs. That's really fuzzy math. ‘Cause you can't prove that you created 350,000 jobs or that you saved them by cutting taxes. You can't prove it."

"Why did the GNP go up by 3.5% in the last quarter?" Martin asked.

"Obviously, because of false claims of a million jobs created," Varney accused.

"Obviously, The stimulus helped," Frost said. He referred to the $8,000 first time homebuyer tax credit. "The alternative is to sit by and do nothing. That's what the Republicans want to do."

"You should not make exaggerated claims about that kind of spending." ($787 billion) Varney continued. Speaking of exaggerated claims, where was Fox News' interest in "exaggerated claims" from the Bush administration's cries of "weapons of mass destruction" in the run up to the war in Iraq? We must have missed it.

"Only a small portion of that stimulus money has been spent," Frost continued.

Frost added, “I think you should be arguing whether the policy makes sense… Does it make as much sense to spend money on a stimulus stimulating the economy? Should the government play a role? Not trying to nitpick… whether it’s this number of jobs or that number of jobs. This should be a policy discussion and the government has a role to play to bring this economy back.”

As Frost correctly noted, there was no attempt by Varney to put the stimulus in perspective. What has been accomplished by it and what not? What can we expect from it in the future? There was not even a serious attempt to look into how the Obama administration has managed the funds. Instead, these questions of vital importance to all Americans were degraded into a trivial foodfight, another act in Fox News' anti-Obama theatrics.