By Jeff Harding
This is what I have been saying about Keynesian fiscal stimulus for the last year: when it doesn’t work, its advocates come up with excuses such as we didn’t do enough, we didn’t do it soon enough, intervening events thwarted the efficacy of this policy. Etcetera, etcetera.
WASHINGTON — Vice President Joe Biden said the Obama administration “misread how bad the economy was” and didn’t foresee unemployment levels nearing double digits, in comments likely to intensify calls for the administration to do more to counter job losses.
Some economists are pressing the White House to enact a second round of stimulus spending or find some other way to avert a prolonged job and wage slump. But the White House is in a tough spot. Officials want to give the $787 billion stimulus package passed in February time to work — only 10% of the spending is out the door so far — and there is little appetite in Congress, particularly among Republicans, for spending more money at a time of record deficits. …
“There was a misreading of just how bad an economy we inherited,” he said in the interview, which aired Sunday. He and other White House officials say the administration relied on consensus economic figures in January when they were developing the stimulus package.
This I find to be rather pathetic. If there’s one thing they shouldn’t have relied on it’s the consensus figures. Everyone knows these numbers are mostly incorrect, sometimes wildly so. Here’s Joe Biden saying, “we couldn’t help it; it’s not our fault.”
The bottom line: they are really, really scared. It’s supposed to work, dammit!