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Sunday, June 21, 2009

Providing Some "Reason" to the Stimulus

The Reason Foundation, a nonprofit free market think tank, has put together an in depth, section by section, look at the stimulus. As can be expected from a report written from a free market perspective, the author’s have found some fault with the legislation. The report’s conclusion provides an example:
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act largely just provides general funds to government agency budgets, bloating the already large bureaucracy. The stimulus bill does not focus on fiscal responsibility, but rather makes the government even larger, funding many untested programs that could significantly add to government waste. From funding the War on Drugs to Comparative Effectiveness Research, the policy implications of the stimulus spending will leave a permanent stamp on the future of the American economy and society.

A significant portion of the money in stimulus was directed towards expanding the size of government by over $97 billion. This money creates 30 new programs that dramatically increase the role of government in the lives of individuals and operations of businesses. The new programs are 18 percent of the spending in the stimulus bill. These programs largely focus on increasing government funding of energy related projects and providing social services, with $16.1 billion being given to energy projects.

The unfortunate thing is that the spending won’t be limited to just this money. Those energy projects never existed before and won’t be over within one or two years. In this way the government has committed itself to long-term funding of billions of dollars worth of projects and programs. That’s $16.1 billion that will be needed from the next budget and the budget after that for years to come.
That said, the Foundation’s report is certainly worth a look. They provide researched spending breakdowns be section and commentary discussing how each dollar will, or will not, stimulate the economy.

1 comment:

  1. I'm sorry but what does any of this have in common with free enterprise, again? We the People are broke, just as the government who is supposed to be "we the people" is broke. So, why are we spending more money that we don't have and forgoing the private sector in any of this?

    It's the private sector that has come up with the innovations and the technologies and the exploration that have made this Nation prosperous. Now, suddenly, the government can do it better? What was the last thing the government did well, outside of separating us from our money and our freedom?

    We have laws and regulations and courts to oversee any process by the private sector. The government has to untie their hands!

    I also note that there is never any mention about exploiting our own natural gas, oil and cleaning up our coal. There isn't any mention of nuclear power either so I guess that's to be reserved for the Mullah's of Iran and not the Americans?

    No. No. No. No. NO MORE. Got that DC?