How do they count "saved" jobs from stimulus?

A transcript from the Rush Limbaugh show:

RUSH: Dick, Maple Valley, Washington. Nice to have you with us. Hello. . . . . .

CALLER: Okay. Well, I found out yesterday one way the Obamas may be keeping score on jobs created or saved, my wife and I own a manufacturing company, and one of our customers received stimulus money. So they send us a form from the Department of Administrative Services, about 50 questions to go through and two of them were how many jobs were created or how many jobs were sustained. So I put zero because there really wasn't any, and sent it in. They called back and said, "Well, didn't anyone..."

RUSH: Well, now, wait, I'm confused. You didn't get the stimulus money, somebody else did. Why are you filling out the form?

CALLER: They bought our product.

RUSH: Oh. So stimulus money bought your product and then you had to report back to Washington?

CALLER: Correct. Yeah. And so they said, "Well, how can it be zero, didn't someone process our order or make the product?" And I said, "Well, to me a job sustained is if I didn't have to lay-off or fire someone because you ordered something and that's not the case." And he had a guide that the government provided that explains their logic on each line item, and they said, "No, sustained would mean that someone actually worked on the product and made it and so that counts as a job sustained." And so I said, "So the person that answers the phone would be one, the person that boxed it up would be two," and I said I can't do that.

RUSH: What happens if a machine answers like if you call 211?

CALLER: Yeah. So I gave 'em one, but, you know, that's one too many, and, you know, I'm sure that's what they're going to use --

Regarding Oregon, here is a discussion about counting the jobs.

The testimony from the heads of a dozen state agencies was much more positive than a report released last week by the Department of Administrative Services. That report, based on information almost a month old, said less than one-third of the projects had begun. . . . .

The terms "created" and "saved" have fairly loose definitions. According to the agency keeping track, for someone to be employed -- and thus counted -- they must be paid to help complete one of the stimulus projects. There is no differentiating between a job that employs someone for hours and one that employs someone for months. . . . .

Here is an example of the type of reporting form that the caller appears to be referring to.

Some information on the New Hampshire job counting process is here.

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Blogger JFA in Montreal said...

The whole notion of job creation by gov't is ludicrous, to start with. Either they remove the impediment to business and euphemistically call that "job creation", is if refraining from breaking one's leg could be "helping someone to walk", or they positively help some businesses to create job, by stealing ressources from some other businesses, again distorting the process of resources allocation according to people's free will (e.g. where they spend their money freely and uncoerced)

I think it is time that we stop accepting these euphemism. Doing otherwise is nothing but we the victims granting our abusers a moral sanction. Sorry for the Randian twist, but never mind Rand, I truly believe that this is absolutely the case. Anyone who had to deal with a schoolyard thug should know this...

7/03/2009 3:12 PM  

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