$800 Billion in Hush Money

Well, it looks as if the "stumulus" bill has passed, and its all over except for the conference committees (which will likely comprimise the House and Senate bills by adding a $100 billion or so).

There is just no way there can be a Keynesian muliplier above 1 for such spending.  Even if someone could show me a theoretical example crafted for a particular economic situation with the best of all governments, there is simply no way this real-world government is going to spend the money that well.   500 geniuses with perfect incentives couldn't do it, and certainly the folks in Congress are not geniuses and have far less-than-perfect incentives.

So you ask, will we get any stimulative effect?  I would answer:  Just one.  Obama and Congress will now shut the hell up trying to panic everyone into battening down the hatches for the worst economy in history, and folks can get a bit of breathing space to look around them and see that business opportunity is still there.  This is $800 billion in hush money, a bribe we are paying Obama and Pelosi in the form of passing a lot of their pent up leftish wish list, in return for them taking some ownership interest in real economic health.

  • lkoen1

    Norm Augustine said it best: Until we can compete globally, we have no chance to recover. When most of our graduates in engineering, math, and science are foreigners and American graduates major primarily in art and sports exercises we have no chance. When one of our employees can be replaced by 8 Mexicans or 15 Chinese for the same cost, we have no chance. When our companies spend more for healthcare than for their primary product, we have no chance.
    It appears to me that our economy and artificially inflated values must sink to a level comparable to other economies along with salaries, benefits, healthcare, welfare. Our unrealistic beliefs that Americans are smarter, work harder, and are entitled to more will end soon. The $800 plus billion stimulus program has simply ensured the socialization of our nation and devaluation of our already weak dollar. Hard times are ahead, but I do agree that opportunities are out there.

  • NJconservative

    I assume that this is tongue-in-cheek, because there is no way that Pelosi & Company will take ownership of anything, much less an interest in the economic health of our nation. If Pelosi were given the choice of driving the entire country, except the Bay Area, into a depression in exchange for some pretty buildings in San Francisco and a few contracts for her husband, she would do it without batting one of her botoxed and lifted eyes.

    You are more sanguine than I am about this catastrophe. We have crowded out a huge amount of private investment for the foreseeable future, just so these people can fund their pet projects.

  • Dr. T

    The entire bill is a disaster, but this item gives it some ironic humor:

    $87 million for a polar icebreaking ship

    (Gee, didn't global warming melt all the ice? Aren't all the polar bears acting like sea lions to survive?)

  • tarpon

    It's the Chicago patronage slush fund.

  • Valens

    This is not a bribe... It is an all out power grab. Period. If one looks at the insides of that Bill, it looks like it is structured for the express purpose of giving the Democrats solid control of the government, not in a good way, for the foreseeable future. Of course, that could never happen here, could it?

  • Ian Random

    I need hushing. Can I get a few million please?

  • TXJim

    I've long suspected the Democrat MO was kind of old school, i.e. to drastically inflate the severity of the "crisis" so they could further exaggerate their success with solving the "crisis". In early January I thought they would shift gears quickly after passage and begin the spin campaign to sell the progress the bill has provided.

    Now I see that is not the plan. Once this bill is done there is another one in the crisis pipeline. This will be the crisis that never ends. They will have a small team dedicated to selling the progress of the solution to the "old" crisis and a large team dedicated to hyping the next crisis. One day it will be "we have always been at war with Eurasia." The next day it will be "we have always been at war with Eastasia."

    The next time we will hear sustained positive language coming out of DC will begin in Q2 2010. And that will only be to prevent a turnover in the House in 2010.

  • NJconservative... laughing out loud at your brilliant sentence. "If Pelosi were given the choice of driving the entire country, except the Bay Area, into a depression in exchange for some pretty buildings in San Francisco and a few contracts for her husband, she would do it without batting one of her botoxed and lifted eyes."

    Priceless.