On February 17, 2009 – less than one month into their first term – then-President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden both flew to Colorado to sign their $787 billion stimulus package into law. They had decided to move the signing venue from Washington, D.C. to Denver in order to emphasize the green-jobs provisions contained in the legislation. Remember, this was at a time when the Democratic Party controlled not just the executive branch of government, but also held super majorities in both houses of congress. They could basically do whatever they wanted, and this is what they chose to do.
As point man on the bill, Biden helped message the Democrats’ stimulus package as a green-jobs creator, promising it would create over 5 million jobs such jobs. The Obama/Biden commitment at the time was all about the creation of a new, “clean energy” economy and “green jobs” similar to what Alexandria Ocasio Cortez and Bernie Sanders promise today as a part of their “Green New Deal,” although they’ve dressed their $90 Trillion package up with more aggressive terms like “environmental catastrophe” and “climate justice.”
It’s all the same plot today – same actors, new title, updated talking points.
So, how did that Obama/Biden “Green Jobs” plan work out for us? A few years later, Obama/Biden’s own Department of Labor issued four reports on the Green Jobs Program. The first report, issued in September of 2011, was titled “Recovery Act: Slow Pace Placing Workers into Jobs Jeopardizes Employment Goals of the Green Jobs Program.” Its findings were quite telling:
- Nearly three-fourths of the way through the anticipated time frame, only 1/3rd of the allotted funding had been expended;
- Just 42% of the desired 124,000+ participants had even been signed up for the program’s training in “green jobs”;
- Half of the training programs provided five or fewer days of training. Hardly a robust training for a full career;
- Over twenty percent of the “degrees” and certificates went to people with only one day of training; and
- Only 1,336 participants retained employment for at least 6 months, a miniscule 2 percent of the targeted employment retention of 69,717 participants.
That is all.
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