Economic Stimulus Bill to House Floor – Contest Continues!
The economic stimulus bill is slated for debate in the House today, and if the Washington Post could just trim its Sunday editorial on the bill down to 150 words, it would be a contender in our big economic stimulus contest. Here are some kickers:
Helping hire, equip and pay police, a $4 billion item under the bill, might be a good idea, but writing checks to individual households for the same amount would do more to stimulate the economy. Ditto for $16 billion in Pell Grants for college students, $2.1 billion for Head Start and $50 million for the National Endowment for the Arts. All of those ideas may have merit, but why do they belong in an emergency measure aimed to kick-start the economy? For sheer irrationality, it would be hard to top the $4.19 billion the bill would give to the Neighborhood Stabilization Program, on top of $4 billion authorized last year. This program gives local governments money to buy and rehabilitate homes that have been foreclosed on — thus giving lenders an incentive to foreclose on more houses.