Dead Horse Beating Time

My new favorite phrase is "saved or created." From now on, if I do poorly at something I'll just argue things would have been much worse if I'd done nothing at all. The unfalsifiability is bulletproof. Rarely have three words simultaneously been entirely empty of substantive meaning and a political masterstroke. "Whip Inflation Now," "Just Say No," and "vast right-wing conspiracy" are each, at best, second-rate by comparison. If the press wasn't broadly in love with PBO (which, for all our sakes, is starting to turn) this phrase would receive the sneering disdain it deserves.

On the off chance you've wondered how the administration intends to calculate SoC jobs, here's a little hint: the way that generates the highest number. Here's the money quote for non-WSJ subscribers (emphasis mine):

All we're asking them to do is a simple headcount; tell us how many people you hired," said Rob Nabors, the deputy director of the office (OMB), in an interview. Recipients won't be asked to grapple with complicated estimates, he added. Instead, they may use their best guess whether a job would have been created or saved in the absence of a recovery plan, and to not count it if they are uncertain.

You just can't make up this stuff, unless of course you work for OMB, in which case it's your job to make up stuff. I wish I'd seen this coming. Oh, wait. . . .I did.

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