"To announce that there must be no criticism of the president, or that we are to stand by the president, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public." -- Theodore Roosevelt


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Wednesday, February 4, 2009

The False Urgency

Check out this little clip of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi posted on Michlle Malkin's website. On it she claims that "Every month that we do not have an economic recovery package 500 million Americans lose their jobs." That many? Why in two years that's 12 billion jobs lost. Wow... and we thought Zimbabwe's unemployment rate of 96% was bad...

While we can write off Pelosi's misstep as the normal "slip of the tongue," the purpose behind this mistake is revealing. Pelosi, like most Obamacrats, seems intent on stressing the urgency of this "dire" economic situation, cavalierly throwing about huge and untrue numbers, falsely declaring that every economist "across the political spectrum" believes that something drastic must be done. This huge and complicated "stimulus" bill has to happen now, now, NOW! The untruth of these fervent sentiments is quite staggering. In an earlier post, Emergency Stimulus? Pt. 2, I noted the National Review Online's excellent analysis by Jim Manzi which points out, among other important observations, that the "stimulus" package's spending will not even get into full swing until 2010. Hurry up and we can spend lots of money next year!

If economic times really are so apocalyptic, why would this government not react like most past administrations and foreign governments have in times of stress, namely run around and put out the immediate fires? Why are we assuming (and some would argue causing) the worst case scenario? Assuming that government sponsored stimulus is needed (which I do not), why not send the "stimulus" to Congress piecemeal, prioritizing immediate concerns? If it needs to be done right now, then why not do it in a manner that can actually happen right now?

The answer is pretty simple. This is not about economic rescue at all. The bill's main emphasis of spending and the outlays it has planned (again see Jim Manzi's analysis) makes this clear. At best, this bill is huge and bloated so that the pork, political paybacks, and favors are hidden within its elephantine folds. At worst, it's an attempt to permanently increase federal spending up into previously unknown levels.

And hurry up, don't read it, don't expect the American people to understand it. Hurry up! It's urgent... an emergency... 500 million jobs are lost every month... that's 193 jobs a second!

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