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Source link: http://archive.mises.org/9328/stimulus-as-an-obscene-gesture/

Stimulus as an Obscene Gesture

January 28, 2009 by

You might think that Congress is giving us the finger, after looking at the third figure (scroll down) on this page. And it might be, too, since even the Keynesian advocates of this bill advocate that for the redistribution to work, it must be spent ASAP. So why is the brunt of the spending slated for 2010? Its advocates claim that the lag is unavoidable, because it takes time for spending projects to get underway. Yet, my reading indicates that the states have projects ready to go right away. So if the economy is really in crisis, then why wait?

Oh wait. Midterm elections take place in 2010. This is just another example of Keynesian economics political appeal, and why it persists.


J Cortez January 28, 2009 at 3:27 pm

The stimulus obscene? Yes, but I would argue that the overwhelming majority of what congress does is obscene. The only difference is the degree of obscenity.

Frank January 28, 2009 at 4:25 pm

I posted the same sentiment on my Facebook this morning when I saw the same graph on WSJ:

See that graph? That’s a big middle finger, a gargantuan F-You!, to the citizens as our government pushes the debt to new levels in 2010. The “value” of the dollars in your wallet will plummet as the monetary supply is hyper inflated. Does anyone really understand what a trillion dollars looks like?

Larry Sheldon January 28, 2009 at 8:35 pm
Reason January 28, 2009 at 10:08 pm


I bet Peanut Corp uses stimulus money to pay for their legal defence, court fees, fines, restitution- and ad campaigns to restore public confidence.

To think they killed people for peanuts.

Deefburger January 28, 2009 at 10:20 pm

Wow, 2010 mid-term election stimulus. I guess I can breath a little until I have to “grab my ankles”.

It is obscene. Gone are the days when we could pay a debt with only a pound of flesh. Now it takes a whole nation of bodies.

“Jane!! Stop this crazy thing!! JANE!” George Jetson

Drake January 29, 2009 at 8:05 am

I’ve seen some comments on this site claiming that politicians aren’t evil, per se. Just stupid.


Well, as stupid as they may be, they’re smart enough to realize that spending other people’s money keeps them in power.

EconAndre January 29, 2009 at 9:26 am

Hey, searching the bill is really fun. I searched on the word “shovel” and found a great project ready to spend.

Shop ’til you drop!

Tim O January 29, 2009 at 12:05 pm

I think the hands off approach worked very well in peanuts, lead filled toys, poison laden pet food, Minnesota bridges, New Orleans levees and banking over the last couple of years.

Viva Libertarianism! Death to Regulation!

Reason January 29, 2009 at 1:57 pm

Tim O,

Bridges, levees and banking in this country are dominated by government control and that is why you see no consequences or responsibility assigned for their failures. Notice that the peanut, toy and pet food producers are (will be) hurt by their fraudulent or irresponsible actions to the extent that they live in the market.

The Chinese boss associated with the lead toys commited suicide in response to his market exposure. There was a massive recall too. No such action has been taken against or by FEMA or Army Corp of Engineers or any politician (ever?).

Now, government is intertwined in the market place- but the closer entities are to a real market the more accountable they are. Currently it is a matter of degree.

More generically, it is important for a counter force to apply regulation. It is just that government, as a taxing and violent monopoly, has less countering it. The classic liberal question of “Who is watching the watchers?” may come to mind. Markets always have a greater likelihood of off-setting powers because no entity has the prior one-up inherent in the ability to tax and access to arbitrary final ruling in its own disputes etc.

Markets assume horizontal relationships. Government, vertical.

As Ron Paul said earlier, why isn’t the Federal Reserve or Treasury regulated?

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