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The politics of stimulus

First, I'll start with a bold prediction. The new economic stimulus package, if passed, will work about as well as the last stimulus package, but at about 10 times the cost. I also predict that some version of it will pass with fairly broad support.

The politics of the debate, however, could get interesting. Like many liberals, I was annoyed by John Boehner's objections to the contraceptive bits in the bill. It's not that larding up an economic stimulus package with birth control spending isn't stupid (it is) but rather because Boehner's objections were too easy to dismiss as stereotypical Republican puritanism. Also, Boehner's comments led me to infer that if you stripped out the sexy bits, he'd be happy enough to climb aboard. (It turns out I owe Boehner an apology, since it looks like he's since come out foursquare in opposition to the bill.)

But it was interesting how President Obama came forward and bitch-slapped Nancy Pelosi's Botoxed face by telling her that condoms do not stimulate the economy, and that line item had no business in an economic rescue bill. Obama could succeed where Boehner couldn't because everyone knows Obama isn't a sex-phobic religious nut. Perhaps he does, however, know partisan stupidity when he sees it, even if it's in his own party.

Granted, the stimulus bill has a lot more problems than a few condoms here and there, and I'm sure there are pork-laden horrors therein that we won't know about for years, if ever. But I also don't doubt for a minute that Congress would be considering some remarkably similar abomination even if Republicans were still running the show. It will be interesting to watch how the debate unfolds, and we begin to get a sense of the dynamic of our new government. I know it's premature, but I'm beginning to think the Obamacons might have been onto something after all.


The Obamacons were/are just in love with a Messiah. Especially one that's a minority. The saner folks who voted for him had just as many concerns and were happy to voice them, like Ann Althouse and Katie Granju. Those that did not vote for him (like myself) feel that someone's pulling the strings for him. It's too early to tell. Although I am impressed he told Pelosi to cool it.

Wow, the handout to Wall St. gave Boehner a big boner, but helping the middle class really has set him yelping like a mad dog!

Like children, the Republicans all voted against anything to help the middle class, anything that wasn't a giveaway to Wall St. and overpaid Corporate executives, anything that doesn't put even more of us awful overpaid Americans out of work to enrich the obscenely wealthy!

Who wouldn't be proud? Childish, ineffective crybabies who no longer matter -- that's today's new Repug Party!

The current pork-laden "stimulus package" is an abomination that's short on incentives and long on pork.

Bottom-line, Americans LOVE to work. Plain and simple.

We work longer hours and are more productive than any other nation on earth.

What's more, American men tend to have strong backs and bulging biceps that they like to show off (many call them "their guns") and they like physical labor so much, you really can't "overwork" an American. Believe me, when I built decks (with ALL American labor) I tried...I really, REALLY tried...couldn't do it.

Recently, Paul Krugman's argued that with our $15 TRILLION economy, we could guarantee EVERY American family around $100,000/year, with money left for all our other basic services, including a national healthcare system.

Well, FIRST off, that's NOT actually true. A LOT of that private sector money HAS to be reinvested back into those businesses. SECONDLY, people respond to incentives. When a CEO, a heart surgeon and a janitor all get the SAME level of compensation, you end up with a nation of janitors with NO CEOs and NO heart surgeons...in FACT, if you simply guarantee that income, you soon find that the bulk of American (even though they LOVE to work) won't do NY assigned jobs....apparently choosing to exert their strong backs and bulging biceps in their own gardens and such.

With no workers, well, and as loathe as I am to use technical economic jargon, "everything pretty much truns to rat shit after that."

See what I mean?

We NEED to stimulate INDUSTRY and EMPLOYERS not people with subpar skills and nonviable productivity (work) patterns a/k/a "deadbeats."

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