In just 30 days, more done than ever.

In just 30 days, more done than ever.

A senior White House official said in a background briefing:

“President Obama has accomplished more in 30 days than any president in modern history.”

Bill Clinton, at this point in his presidency, was dealing with the “gays in the military” controversy. But Obama, he continued, “has a set of wins under his belt”.

Those “wins” refer to legislation on children’s health insurance, the “Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act,” and the famous stimulus bill. VP Joe Biden couldn’t remember, but the website is www.Recovery.gov. According to the Office of Management and Budget, the website is getting 3,000 hits per second.

There, you will find an interesting break-down of the stimulus package:

"Where is money going?"(from recovery.gov)

"Where is your money going?"(from recovery.gov)

If you think “$288 B” seems too inflated when classified as “tax relief”, compared to everything else that has been circulating on the media since the House approved a first version of the bill, you are not the only one. It’s all in the semantics.

According to US Budget Watch Project‘s analysis, the stimulus breakdown is slightly different:

Another point of view

Another point of view

Those $288B of tax relief can then be separated into 5 groups: $116.2 + $69.8 + $46.5 + $6.2 + $47.9.

The largest of all, $116.2, is the “Making Work Pay Credit”, a handout payable to everyone that works regardless of tax liability; if you can get it without paying taxes, it’s hardly a new tax cut.

The second largest, $69.8, is the AMT Patch, which has become an annual tradition in Congress: it passed in 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004… It would likely be approved again in 2009. If you can get it every year, it’s hardly a new tax cut.

That leaves the rest, 35% of the “tax relief”, as real new tax provisions. The tax relief part gets to be advertised as 2.8 times larger than what it really is. More than any, ever.

Advertisements