Pres Obama and his surrogates have taken to repeating a mantra: the stimulus bill must be big and must be enacted quickly or else we’ll face an economic catastrophe. The logic: we’re already taking a shelling and economists say $1 trillion is about the right number.
I’m struck that the emphasis is on big and quick … not right and effective.
There are parts of the proposed bill that make sense and seem to have consensus — e.g. extending unemployment benefits. Others are debatable philosophically but can probably pass the “does it stimulate” criteria — e.g. Barack O’s $500 refundable tax credits. Many (most ?) are outright pork and pay-offs.
Why not break the bill into parts? Pass the stuff that’s on target and relatively non-contentious now … then debate the marginal and flakey stuff in due course. Since most of that stuff won’t make a bit of difference to the economy, delaying won’t matter.
Even if $1 trillion is the right number, we can roll up to it … it’s not necessary to swallow it in one huge gulp.
What am I missing?
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