Thoughts, essays, and writings on Liberty. Written by the heirs of Patrick Henry.

“They (the emperors) frequently abused their power arbitrarily to deprive their subjects of property or of life: their tyranny was extremely onerous to the few, but it did not reach the greater number; .. But it would seem that if despotism were to be established amongst the democratic nations of our days it might assume a different character; it would be more extensive and more mild, it would degrade men without tormenting them.”     Alexis de Tocqueville

January 9, 2009

Why Haggle Over What Goes Where?

by Brad Warbiany

Felix Salmon sees an odd silver lining in 7.2% unemployment:

Maybe the only real upside to this report is that it should light a fire under Congress to pass a stimulus package sooner rather than later — including the release of the second tranche of TARP funds. Let’s start getting money out the door now: that’s more important than haggling over what goes where.

Here, for once, I agree. Let’s not haggle over accountability or where this money actually ends up… That just introduces needless delays.

I’ll even offer to help. Drop a billion or so off with me, and I’ll guarantee that at least $900M of it gets distributed quickly across all sorts of people I see. I’ll drive through South Central dropping it on street corners.

What about that left over $100M? You object to me keeping it? Again, why haggle?

Hat Tip: Kevin Drum

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  1. It’s the inevitable result when you think spending will promote your cause, but the money spent is almost entirely from other people. “Sure, spend as much as you want, but do it quickly!” Reason number 3,412 in the list of why government spending is so rife with abuse and unintended consequences.

    I’m reminded of an exchange from the film As Good as It Gets, when a receptionist asks author Melvin Udall, “How do you write women so well?” He responds, “I think of a man, and I take away reason and accountability.”

    While that statement succeeds in being humorously outrageous in the movie, it’s sad to think how accurate it is when applied to government spending rather than women.

    Comment by Akston — January 9, 2009 @ 8:37 pm
  2. You tricked me… thanks. The back-tracking that I had to do in my head made the issue clear as crystal.

    Comment by Paul — January 9, 2009 @ 9:45 pm
  3. Too many people think that simply throwing money the problem will fix it. It doesn’t work that way and it never will. This crisis is something we have to deal with thanks to the government intervention that caused this crisis and if we try to buy ourselves through it we will only set ourselves up for a future crisis that is worse than this one.

    Comment by Miraj Patel — January 10, 2009 @ 10:31 am

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