You know that idiotic commercial polluting your TV screen(s) these days, the one by pathological liar Willard “Mitt” Romney about where the “Obama stimulus money” went? According to Romney and his fellow liars, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (they don’t call it that, of course), approximately $800 billion in total, went to “friends, donors, campaign supporters, special interest groups…Solyndra ($500 million), “windmills from China,” “electric cars from Finland.”
Of course, this is at best distorted. For instance, PolitiFact, not exactly a big friend of Democrats, found the “windmills from China” claim to be “mostly false.” It further found the “electric cars from Finland” claim to be totally “false.” The Washington Post’s Fact Checker, also no friend of Democrats, gave the ad overall two “Pinocchios” for having “Significant omissions and/or exaggerations” (that’s an understatement). Finally, see Media Matters for a complete demolition of the Romney ad, including the New York Times analysis that “much of the ad is false;” the ABC News analysis that “less than .000031 percent of the $814 billion stimulus program” went to wind turbines made in China; the Washington Post analysis that “the stimulus created about 51,000 jobs in the U.S. wind industry;” etc, etc. Bottom line: this ad is false, false, false – no matter how many times they run it on our TV screens.
So, where DID the Obama stimulus money go? (see the graph above, also continue below the “fold” for the answer)
ProPublica has an excellent breakdown (see here and here, which I put into graphic form. For that, see above, and please click to “embiggen.” As you can see, about 60% of the stimulus money went to tax cuts to individuals, small businesses, etc. You’d think Romney would be celebrating that! Another $153 billion or so went to help states with Medicaid expenditures and to protect teachers and first responders from layoffs. Again, you’d think Republicans, of all people, would cheer protecting first responders, although perhaps they don’t give a you-know-what about teachers and Medicaid recipients (even though many are poor whites). Yet another $117 billion or so went to building and repairing roads, bridges, rail, and other crucial infrastructure. Again, why would Republicans be against any of this? On and on we go…around $100 billion to help people hurt by the Bush recession, $88 billion for Pell Grants, NIH, upgrading health care IT, special education, etc; and $75 billion for energy efficiency – the biggest bang for the buck when it comes to energy – science and technology, R&D, broadband, great stuff like that which normally has bipartisan support. Finally, you get down to items that are not even rounding errors in this $800 billion package, and THOSE are the ones Romney decided to focus on, wildly distort, and make an ad about.
All of this would be astounding, except that we’ve learned long ago that Willard’s a pathological liar, willing to say anything if it helps him get elected. Including blatant lies and wild distortions, like the crazy “Where DID the Obama Stimulus Money Go” ad. Next time this thing comes on your TV screen, I strongly recommend that you turn it off, throw a shoe at it, or better yet, donate to the Obama campaign so they can fight back against this crap. Thanks.