Will the stimulus actually stimulate? Economists say no

McClatchy Washington Bureau | 02/12/2009 | Will the stimulus actually stimulate? Economists say no:

“I think (doing) nothing would have been better,” said Ed Yardeni, an investment analyst who’s usually an optimist, in an interview with McClatchy. He argued that the plan fails to provide the right incentives to spur spending.

A lot of my worry is either about the action being unfocused and/or indecisive (are they not two sides to the same coin?)

It’s unfocused. That is my problem. It is a lot of money for a lot of nickel-and- dime programs. I would have rather had a lot of money for (promoting purchase of) housing and autos . . . .

Another complaint I have (beyond the money being spent) is that there are alternative goals which serve to distract:

Another reason that some analysts frown on the stimulus is the social spending it includes on things such as the Head Start program for disadvantaged children and aid to NASA for climate-change research. Both may be worthy efforts, but they aren’t aimed at delivering short-term boosts to economic activity.

To put it another way, Ecclesiastes 3:1-7:

There is a time for everything,  and a season for every activity under heaven…