Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Stim Lit

The Wall Street Journal takes a hard look at the stimulus plan and finds little to like:

In selling the plan, President Obama has said this bill will make "dramatic investments to revive our flagging economy." Well, you be the judge. Some $30 billion, or less than 5% of the spending in the bill, is for fixing bridges or other highway projects. There's another $40 billion for broadband and electric grid development, airports and clean water projects that are arguably worthwhile priorities.

Add the roughly $20 billion for business tax cuts, and by our estimate only $90 billion out of $825 billion, or about 12 cents of every $1, is for something that can plausibly be considered a growth stimulus. And even many of these projects aren't likely to help the economy immediately. As Peter Orszag, the President's new budget director, told Congress a year ago, "even those [public works] that are 'on the shelf' generally cannot be undertaken quickly enough to provide timely stimulus to the economy."

The fact is that this plan is about as stimulating as watching a Joy Behar sex video. The term "litmus test" in politics has gotten a bad rap of late, but if individual Congressional Republicans don't have the intestinal fortitude to stand up, take off their Obama goggles, and reject this flaccid blob of waste then they might as well make it official and crawl into bed with the Democratic leadership. At least they should know who they're going to wake up with in the morning.

UPDATE: The Freedom Foundation of Minnesota has a Top Ten List of Least Stimulating Requests For Federal Ching Made By Minnesota Cities:

1. St. Cloud $750,000 Skateboarding Park

Ever since a local entrepreneur closed the doors of his skate park in 2006, enthusiasts in St. Cloud have tried to raise a quarter of a million dollars to start building a huge state-of-the-art skate park "plaza." The city even agreed to carry donors' debt for four years, but donations--to use skateboarding terminology--continue to "grind" along well short of their goal. So the city has done a "kick turn" and asked taxpayers to foot the bill for the entire project. Taxpayers need to become familiar with another skateboard term and "grab" their wallets.

Or simply tell the boarders to go "shove it."

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