The Winners of the Big Economic Stimulus Contest

by on February 5, 2009 · 8 comments

. . . have been announced on the WashingtonWatch.com blog.

  • http://srynas.blogspot.com/ Steve R.

    As I watch the “stimulus” bill story unfold, I have to agree with many economists that this is not a real stimulus bill but eight years of pent-up pork.

    In taking a look at the winners/losers, I have a somewhat different take.

    Graham Dufault stated: “However, I want to argue in favor of a subsection in Title IX appropriating increased funds for green job training.” While I am not against job training per se, what I am against is subsidizing the the “green industry”. The “correct” free-market approach would be to raise taxes on fossil fuel consumption as the incentive for private industry to “invest” in the “green industry”. In a sense one can say this is a “winner” since you are getting a free handout. The fact that it does not make economic sense, I suppose is irrelevant.

    Kristina Rasmussen wrote: “If we look at which transportation mode people actually use, it is clear that Congress is heavily favoring the proportionately small number of rail/transit users.” I find this statement short-sighted. It is an example of not thinking the issue through. We have a pro-automobile mentality, so a proposal that favors rail would naturally be considered “bad”. We need a better rail system to reduce road and airway congestion. (Yes airway, rail would be a good option for short-haul air travel.) So, in a sense, transportation can still be viewed as the “loser”.

  • http://srynas.blogspot.com/ Steve R.

    As I watch the “stimulus” bill story unfold, I have to agree with many economists that this is not a real stimulus bill but eight years of pent-up pork.

    In taking a look at the winners/losers, I have a somewhat different take.

    Graham Dufault stated: “However, I want to argue in favor of a subsection in Title IX appropriating increased funds for green job training.” While I am not against job training per se, what I am against is subsidizing the the “green industry”. The “correct” free-market approach would be to raise taxes on fossil fuel consumption as the incentive for private industry to “invest” in the “green industry”. In a sense one can say this is a “winner” since you are getting a free handout. The fact that it does not make economic sense, I suppose is irrelevant.

    Kristina Rasmussen wrote: “If we look at which transportation mode people actually use, it is clear that Congress is heavily favoring the proportionately small number of rail/transit users.” I find this statement short-sighted. It is an example of not thinking the issue through. We have a pro-automobile mentality, so a proposal that favors rail would naturally be considered “bad”. We need a better rail system to reduce road and airway congestion. (Yes airway, rail would be a good option for short-haul air travel.) So, in a sense, transportation can still be viewed as the “loser”.

  • http://srynas.blogspot.com/ Steve R.

    As I watch the “stimulus” bill story unfold, I have to agree with many economists that this is not a real stimulus bill but eight years of pent-up pork.

    In taking a look at the winners/losers, I have a somewhat different take.

    Graham Dufault stated: “However, I want to argue in favor of a subsection in Title IX appropriating increased funds for green job training.” While I am not against job training per se, what I am against is subsidizing the the “green industry”. The “correct” free-market approach would be to raise taxes on fossil fuel consumption as the incentive for private industry to “invest” in the “green industry”. In a sense one can say this is a “winner” since you are getting a free handout. The fact that it does not make economic sense, I suppose is irrelevant.

    Kristina Rasmussen wrote: “If we look at which transportation mode people actually use, it is clear that Congress is heavily favoring the proportionately small number of rail/transit users.” I find this statement short-sighted. It is an example of not thinking the issue through. We have a pro-automobile mentality, so a proposal that favors rail would naturally be considered “bad”. We need a better rail system to reduce road and airway congestion. (Yes airway, rail would be a good option for short-haul air travel.) So, in a sense, transportation can still be viewed as the “loser”.

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