John Ransom

For staggering sum of $47 trillion dollars, one would think that perhaps this administration could afford a soundtrack under their reckless spending, like the 1970’s Bionic Man had when his binary powers took over.

An original-score sound bed would add drama and color to the spending. The theatrical effect would be that it would make us feel like the spending was doing something.

Instead, all Obama got us was the royalty-free laugh track.

Through 2023 the Office of Management and Budget reports that the accumulated spending by the federal government since the One took over will be $46.5 trillion under Obama’s budget plan.

Wanna see what that looks like to Excel?

I knew you did: $46,500,000,000,000.

That’s no laughing matter.

Because that number is why unemployment- real unemployment, not the headline number- remains higher than at anytime since the Great Depression, five years after the stock market melted down.

Official employment underutilization hovers around 14 percent, but according to ShadowStats, underemployment, as it was calculated prior to 1994, hovers just under 25 percent.

The red line above represents the headline number we all read about on CNBC. The gray line represents underemployment as measured today. The blue line measures underemployment as measured prior to 1994.

The gap between the red, gray and blue lines can only be explained by the large numbers of people who have dropped out of the workforce since 2008.

$6.1 trillion has been added to the national debt since Obama took over and it has bought no jobs, no recovery for Main Street.

This year total government spending will be about $6.4 trillion.

Assuming our GDP is somewhere around $16.5 trillion this year, government spending-to-GDP will come out at about 39 percent of GDP. From 1938 through 1944, the height of the New Deal AND the war effort, federal government spending was only 26.5 percent of GDP.

Whatever it was that cured unemployment in the wake of the Great Depression, it wasn’t government spending per se. 

And that’s true today as we try to spend our way to prosperity.

John Ransom

John Ransom’s writings on politics and finance have appeared in the Los Angeles Business Journal, the Colorado Statesman, Pajamas Media and Registered Rep Magazine amongst others. Until 9/11, Ransom worked primarily in finance as an investment executive for NYSE member firm Raymond James and Associates, JW Charles and as a new business development executive at Mutual Service Corporation. He lives in San Diego. You can follow him on twitter @bamransom.

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