The New Deal and The Stimulus Package: Jobs and Infrastructure

The New Deal and The Stimulus Package: Jobs and Infrastructure

Congress Needs to Start Thinking Long-Term

President Barack Obama isn’t too popular now; many believe that he kowtowed to Wall Street and other special interests. But people forget the good that he has done for the country. A positive example of a good deed accomplished by Barack Obama would be the Stimulus Package, which has created jobs and infrastructure. 

The Stimulus Package is quite similar to the New Deal and has benefited the economy greatly. According to an article recently published on Slate, the New Deal provided government funding for great pieces of infrastructure which remain to this day including La Guardia airport, several hydroelectric dams, and miles of highway. At the time, not everyone agreed with the New Deal, but it created thousands of jobs and valuable infrastructure.

The Stimulus Package has been blamed for worsening the economy, but is that really the case? Not necessarily. In 2010, the economy actually expanded by 2.6%. While its not known how much the Stimulus Package impacted the economic growth of the economy, it can’t have hurt. 

It’s unfortunate the United States Senate failed to pass Obama’s job creation plan, which is another stimulus package which would have been funded by taxing the rich. As reported by Business Week, the major reason that the bill didn’t pass was because no one in congress could agree about what exactly should be done about the economy. 

The lack of congressional action is not new; it’s just yet another example of congressional gridlock tying down the system in anticipation of the presidential election in November of 2012. Two Senate Democrats voted with the Republicans on the bill so that it wouldn’t pass. 

Critics of the job bill claim that it would have cost too much per job created and that it was simply a way for Obama to try and buy votes. The math on THIS SITE demonstrates Fox News' glaring mathematical errors in relation to the jobs bill.

The incorrect math used by the Republicans to justify voting against the bill  doesn’t factor in the necessity of creating more jobs in this economy, nor does it factor in the importance of investing in the United States’ infrastructure once again. With failing highways and power systems, the United States won’t be able to compete as well on a global scale with other nations. 

Obama’s jobs creation program would have included money for building a network of high-speed trains within the country. The Senate’s short-term thinking on what the country needs in terms of economic growth will hurt the United States in the long-term. If you look at the lessons of history from the New Deal--also widely criticized at the time--the benefits of a jobs creation program far outweigh the costs. The main difference is that the New Deal created a network of highways in the United States.