Government Spending Doesn’t Create Jobs

The Heritage Foundation blog exposes one of the great myths of Washington (and Harrisburg) – that more government spending on transportation infrastructure (or economic development, or corporate welfare, or sports stadiums, or water and sewer projects, or film tax credits for that matter), will “create jobs.”

Heritage points to recent testimony of experts that additional spending won’t jumpstart the economy, links to research by Ronald Utt showing little economic benefit from additional transportation spending, and notes that even some of Obama’s advisers have pointed that out. 

As noted in my commentary on the Nanny State Mentality,

(T)he pork-barrel spending and corporate welfare that is pervasive in both Harrisburg and Washington exudes the nanny-state mentality. Elected officials often celebrate taxpayer handouts to politically selected companies as “economic development,” claiming they will create jobs. But how many jobs are destroyed with the taxes necessary to pay for these handouts? Taxing all businesses and individuals to give taxpayer-funded gifts to a select few is like splashing water across a pool—it won’t make the pool any larger.