Government Spending

This Post Was Not Funded With Stimulus Money

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CNN reports that Ohio has spent $1 million in stimulus on signs to let Ohioans know which projects are being funded by the stimulus.

Over at the Consumerist, a commenter offers one of my favorite justifications for this sort of waste, a variation on the broken window fallacy:

As long as the signs were made in this country and employed people, why is this bad? It put people to work.

Good point! In fact, Ohio should another billion or so on signs designating everything in Ohio that's not being funded by the stimulus. And perhaps for each of those signs, another sign informing Ohioans that the original signs and their companion signs are courtesy of the stimulus.

I mean, think of how many people you could put to work!

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  1. Were the signs made with prison labor? That would be fucking awesome.

    1. Damn you to hell, P Brooks. I was suppose to be first.

      btw, prisoners only make solar panels.

      1. I didn’t think of that, but LOL’d!

        Maybe they will fetch a pretty penny on eBay in the future when everybody is rich and equal?

  2. That’s a good point. Then you could use these signs to make “green” buildings. The signs are green, right?

  3. Every morning for the past few days CNN has been running stories to “prove” that the stimulus worked. Timed for the SOTU, I imagine.

    1. This morning on “the place for politics,” they had a Washington Post-er on talking about Obama promises. They had three categories: kept, incomplete, and in the works. I think they were missing a category!!!!

      1. The format didn’t permit enough time to cover that whole “broken” category.

        1. You’re right, Sudden. 24 hours isn’t enough.

      2. It was a full page story too. Rumor is they’ll be covering Jimmy Carter next week.

      3. Saw it. My favorite was the “in-progress” promises, otherwise known as lies.

  4. I haven’t seen any of those signs anywhere. It’s very frustrating. I want to steal one and put it on a dildo store or a sinkhole. Or both, so it’s sexy.

    1. Or Capitol Hill or the White House. Same difference.

    2. You Yankees got dildo stores?!

      1. Stores, hell. We got whole malls!

    3. Or cart it into Illinois for the new Gitmo prison?

  5. Everytime I see one of those signs, I want to vandalize that campaign advert by replacing “Funded By The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act” with “Funded by the People’s Republic of China and your grandchildren.”

    1. culture jamming is the bomb, get out there and do it!

  6. If a project wasn’t funded by stimulus money, do they use stimulus money to put up a sign stating that the project wasn’t funded by stimulus money?

    This highlights very well the problem with taking the states out of the checks-and-balances equation. If the states operated with more authority within our system–like they did for a good chunk of our history–they’d resist promoting federal spending and projects in most instances. Now, of course, the partisan interest in supporting the effort (coupled with the nonpartisan interest in getting more gilt) overwhelms any competition between federal and state governments.

  7. I wonder if you look at the back of a sign if you’ll find a little tiny sign that says, “This sign made possible by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.”

    1. Jesus, that’s brilliant! An infinite regression of funding projects!

      Who funds the funders?

      1. Who funds the funders?

        Us. And at gunpoint no less.

        1. Hey, that’s right! I knew there was a reason I was a libertarian!

        2. Does this mean we all get a sign stating that the sign is sponsored by [insert name here], like they do for the roadside litter pickup programs?

          It would be really cool if I could get mine in Cincinnati, by the WKRP studios.

  8. Those signs remind me of the hundreds of signs all around Ireland, notifying people of projects financed by the EU. I remember seeing a table and two benches by a deserted lake, miles away from the nearest town, sporting a nice sign like that. After Ireland finally approved the European Constitution, the signs quickly disappeared…

  9. If the states operated with more authority within our system–like they did for a good chunk of our history–they’d resist promoting federal spending and projects in most instances. Now, of course, the partisan interest in supporting the effort (coupled with the nonpartisan interest in getting more gilt) overwhelms any competition between federal and state governments.

    Speaking of the federal teat, the NYT had a nice little editorial, the other day, urging those troglodytes in Albany to get on the education department gravy train.

    Because crack is goooooood, or something. And long term consequences are for loooooosers.

    1. In the long term, Mr Brooks, we are all dead.

  10. Radley, glad to hear you didn’t take stimulus money for this post but I heard an oral rumor you took it for this one:
    https://reason.com/blog/2010/01…..school-dis

  11. Here’s a restriction on free speech I could fully support — Government may not spend tax dollars to praise its own work.

  12. How painfully appropriate:

    http://pajamasmedia.com/instap…..indebt.jpg

    (SFW, unless you work for a Kool-aid drinking asshole.)

  13. As long as the signs were made in this country and employed people, why is this bad? It put people to work.

    There’s stupid, and there’s Tony-stupid. That qualifies as the latter.

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