January 13th, 2009
09:10 AM ET
13 years ago

Jobs plan: It'll help, but only so much

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/01/12/art.obama12.gi.jpg caption="The president-elect's plan to revive the economy is taking shape. Here's what we know so far."] NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) - President-elect Barack Obama is trying to rally Congress - and the public - around a two-year plan to create 3.7 million jobs and revive the economy.

No doubt about it, it will cost a lot. And economists from left and right are convinced it's what the country needs. But how much better off will we be by 2011?

Watch: Breaking down Obama's tax plan

The likely answer, unfortunately, doesn't involve a ticker-tape parade and a booming job market.

Obama's desire to create or save at least 3 million jobs is "a very concrete way of saying we want to ease as much of the pain as we can," said economist Christina Romer, a coauthor of the analysis and Obama's choice to head the Council of Economic Advisers, in a video address released this weekend.

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soundoff (138 Responses)
  1. Peggy - TX

    Anonymous – Obama has consistently tempered his remarks on major, complex issues like the war and the economy. He espoused a moderate view during the campaign and expressed the need to act based on the ever changing situation.

    I do not believe he has ever lied to the American people. He did not need to as he demonstrated his remarkable capabilities and showed us he has solid moral standards. The vast majority of Americans have a great deal of confidence in Obama, including many that lean Republican. Our high level of confidence in him has gone a long ways, already, to slow down the current economic slide.

    January 13, 2009 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  2. bsmith171

    what is obama talking about?
    neither he nor his master AXELROD know anything about finance or economics.

    January 13, 2009 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  3. pakuna

    Yes we can children Yes we can. oops I meant until you get me in. now it is- yes we can but only so much and then it will be oops I only meant yes we can get me into the white house that was all. nothing more yes we can get me in the white house. ok you did it now @@@off and leave me alone. Cannot wait.

    January 13, 2009 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  4. TomD

    I think the Republicans labeled Obama the "Savior". Those of us who voted for him call him a "true leader". A true leader will have people behind him, people beside him, and people he trusts ahead of him. I'm not sure we saw that in the "Haliburton Era". If 72% of the population wouldn't follow him that just makes him a figure head....not a leader.

    Remember why the Romans placed the plaque on Jesus' cross. He never claimed himself "King". They did it so the belittling would be more painful.

    January 13, 2009 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  5. Debby

    Yep Obama you already dropped the 3000. tax credit plan for buisness's and you haven't even taken office yet. What next after you buffaloed the people into voting for you. Historic moment is right the worse lier that ever took office is what is in store for America.

    January 13, 2009 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  6. geraldine

    The best part about Bush leaving office (among many very good parts), is that he will only be blamed for all ills of the world for another couple years or so. Sooner or later Dems, Obama and the media will have to find someone else to hold accountable. Who will it be? The Republican minority? The Chinese? The Christian Right? The man on the moon? I don't know who will be held accountable, but I know it won't be Obama or the Democratic congress.

    January 13, 2009 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  7. Joe in NJ

    "People who lose homes and jobs don't pay the kinds of taxes that keep our daily lives comfortable."

    Well, take it from someone who pays some of the highest state and local taxes in the country. High taxes mean nothing if you don't know how to properly spend the money.

    January 13, 2009 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  8. w.l. jones

    If it were not for Government help (WPA) before world war two we all would be speaking German now. A good job creating plan give people pride, if some of these young buck were around in the early forty they would seen those pride young men on make work jobs.

    January 13, 2009 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  9. Larry

    OH NO-–But the Savior was promising everything when he was a candidate, now we get the tempered remarks?

    We can always fall back on Obama's new job program of CHANGING the governments light bulbs to the new energy saving kind–Gee,now that's CHANGE we have been talking about.

    How many Americans does it take to change a light bulb ????

    January 13, 2009 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  10. frodo

    Government can't create jobs other than more government jobs.

    How about cutting our taxes and making it possible for companies to prosper. Let the SBA free up credit for small business. And get the governement out of the nit-picky details of running businesses.

    The housing bubble was caused by the government thinking that "everyone should own a home" and they mandated loans to people that couldn't afford them. Other companies came up with creative ways of doing the same thing, all along obscuring the risk and the fact that the people couldn't afford the loans. Then, just like the Maddoff Ponzi scheme, the whole house of cards collapses. The only difference it that we throw Madoff in jail, but re-elect the same stupid officials and Congress who did the same thing.

    America, wake up! The problem is that the Democrats and Republicans are meddling with a complex system, trying to control it. It cannot be controlled, just as the weather cannot.

    January 13, 2009 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  11. Betelgeuse

    Customers create jobs. People buy things and then other people need to make those things.

    Funding a new bridge, or a light rail, or a wind-energy farm, or a new sewage plant don't do much to stimulate the economy. We'll just end up with faster ways to get to all of the closed malls and have electricity surpluses for all of the closed factories.

    Government stimulating jobs is a joke.

    January 13, 2009 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  12. rooty, sc

    I have a serious question. How much does it cost the government in wages, benefits and administrative costs minus what it recoups in taxes (income, SS, sales tax revenue, etc) to pay for the average employee the President – Elect is proposing? Bear in mind, if these are jobs on the "lower end" of the wage scale, the Federal Income Tax liability will be zero, plus some will be eligible for tax credits that add to the cost.
    I'm thinking very few employees included in the government created jobs would be cost effective for taxpayers, but I could be very wrong.
    Just wondering –

    January 13, 2009 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  13. Bararck Obama, still just B.O.

    Funny how promises disappear when you actually have to live up to them. Wonder how they'll blame this on Bush. The promises were made knowing what they were up against but I'm sure the Obama worshipers won't see it that way.

    January 13, 2009 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
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