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Economists Say There’s No Magic Wand

The Senate’s approval of President Obama’s stimulus package was a sure victory for the new administration, but is it a victory for the American people? Bill Stamps has that story.



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Richard Ebeling is an economist, not a Republican or Democratic economist. Just an economist. He says getting the money through taxing people means less money for people to spend, so that doesn’t work. Borrowing the money means less money for people to borrow, so that doesn’t work.  Printing the money means inflation down the road. But surely the President’s economic advisers know this, right?

“Yes, they do and in my opinion, they’re just trying to seeming to be getting something out, to get money circulating in the economy, hoping to have some positive impact in the short run, however limited, to sort of turn around the psychology of the market in the context of also additional bailout money in the financial sector.”

So if economists don’t believe 800 billion in spending will work, then why do it? Ebbling says it’s the nature of politics.

“How do you get elected?—By getting campaign contributions and votes — and that applies to both republicans and democrats. And how do you attract people?—By promising to do things for them and promising to make pain go away.”

And in this case he says even 800 billion won’t make the pain go away.

Bill Stamps, KUHF Houston Public Radio News.