Exhibit A: Stimulus spending
With the entire nation wondering at the effectiveness of a stimulus package that has resulted in not saving 2 million jobs thus far, the data on job creation has finally begun to arrive. In New Hampshire, which got $416 million dollars, officials have proudly announced that the money has created jobs — 50 of them, to be exact. Only 34 of them are full time:
More than $400 million in federal stimulus money has come to New Hampshire this year, and more is on the way.
The Office of Legislative Budget Assistant reported last week that $413.6 million made its way to the state under a list of programs that involve education, highways, environmental, health and human services, energy and law enforcement. …
So far, a total of 50 jobs have been created by the funding, 34 of them full time. The OES will be headed by a director whom Gov. John Lynch has not yet appointed. All five OES jobs are described as full-time temporary positions that will go out of existence in September 2011, the end of the federal fiscal year.
You read that right. The stimulus package in New Hampshire has created 50 temp jobs, apparently all of them bureaucrat positions, and none of them permanent. The Office of Economic Stimulus (OES) employs five of those people, and when the governor appoints the director, that position will pay a $110,000 salary, plus benefits.
Roughly speaking, those 50 jobs cost the American taxpayer $8.32 million per position. If we calculate part-time positions as one-half of a full-time job, the cost per full-time job would be $9.9 million. At that rate, the $787 billion Porkulus package should generate about 79,495 jobs across America — or about what we lose today by 1:37 pm in new unemployment claims. And of course, all of those would last only as long as the stimulus money kept coming to fund them.
Exhibit B: Legally speaking
You can't expect a bank that is dumb enough to sue itself to know why it is suing itself.
Yet I could not resist asking Wells Fargo Bank NA why it filed a civil complaint against itself in a mortgage foreclosure case in Hillsborough County, Fla.
"Due to state foreclosure laws, lenders are obligated to name and notify subordinate lien holders," said Wells Fargo spokesman Kevin Waetke.
Being a taxpayer-subsidized, too-big-to-fail institution, it's possible that one of the few ways for Wells Fargo & Co. (WFC: 24.21, 1.3, 5.67%) to know what it is doing is to notify itself with a court filing.
In this particular case, Wells Fargo holds the first and second mortgages on a condominium, according to Sarasota, Fla., attorney Dan McKillop, who represents the condo owner.
As holder of the first, Wells Fargo is suing all other lien holders, including the holder of the second, which is itself.
[jumping up and down, waving a hand in the air] Ooh, ooh, ooh, I know, I know...let's let the government run our health care system, too! Yeah, that's a terrific idea!
There's my two cents.