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That Debatable Do-Or-Die Urgent Long-Term Stimulus Bill

February 6, 2009

Matthew Continetti points out that M Obama is giving contradictory signals about the so-called stimulus bill. The French Cowboy thinks that the biggest inconsistency lies in the President’s claim that the bill is an urgent, short-term “stimulus” while he simultaneously acknowledges that it contains long-term projects designed to create his vision of America’s clean, healthy and politically correct future. (You know the one where wind and solar power run our cars, we stay warm in winter and cool in summer thanks to soy beans and universal health care eliminates suffering and disease.)

But there are more contradictions in Obama’s comments on the “stimulus” bill. Yesterday he didn’t bother to hide his anger with Republican lawmakers for allegedly making “phony arguments” and indulging in “petty politics”. Yet he knows that the bill is laden with pork – he says so himself – and that even some Democrats don’t like the bill as it stands. Obama cannot seriously believe that Republicans think that all this pork will have good effects on the economy yet oppose it because they just want to give him a hard time.

Furthermore, displaying a certain lack of imagination, Obama blames Bush for having left him a huge deficit. But he is arguing for spending a mind-boggling $800 billion dollars or more on what can be roughly described as a patchwork of pork projects plus. Doesn’t he see that his “spend our way out of the recession” policy will add enormously to the current debt?

Also contradictory is Obama’s lip service to the merit of debate while he accepts no arguments from the opposition. Accusing your opposition of making phony arguments and dismissing every objection as a lie is no way to have a debate. In yesterday’s speech he gloated that in a democracy “no one individual can simply dictate the terms of the debate” and yet this is exactly what he’s trying to do. He also says he welcomes amendments but states that “stimulus” is “spending” implying that, indeed, the Bridge to Nowhere will save the economy. Besides, there are no hints as to what sort of amendments the President would like to see.

And while Obama talks about how he wants debates and amendments he warns about the apocalyptic consequences if the bill doesn’t get passed the day before yesterday. He seems not to understand that a democracy-pampered people like the one he is currently governing prefers to have such a costly assembly of pet projects and long-term endeavors properly discussed and mabye amended. Instead he wants Congress to close their eyes and to pass one of the most expensive bills in US history already – to try out an unproven theory about successful Keynesianism if only the amount of spending is bigger than any other tried before.

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