Reader Email: Give Bush a Chance

Matt Lewis
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Posted: Jan 18, 2008 4:09 PM
On Bush's Stimulus Package ...

Matt,
 
Agree wholeheartedly on the fact that the stimulus proposed by the president, while bold in its size (I was surprised by the $800 number), is generally pretty stupid (I missed the day that taught econ at college, so you say "Keynesian", I say "stupid"). However, the pres has been a great champion for the economy and, as far as I can tell, hasn't lost his love for tax cuts and growth actions. I'm convinced that this is just a set up. Hear me out:
 
He makes the proposal which, politically, makes people think, "Wow, I'm getting $800!" and he does it in a bi-partisan manner, giving Dems credit as well. Everyone's excited, Nancy & Chuck are out there taking credit for it, and all they have to do is work out the details.
 
But when it gets down to negotiating the nitty-gritty of the bill, he throws a corporate income tax cut left hook in there and a capital gains reduction uppercut as they start the 15th round. Staggering, the Dems have to accept, because W says, "Do you want to be the ones that stop this stimulus package from happening because you think its time to stand on (your screwed up) principles and stop a corporate tax cut?"
 
Or perhaps he gets the "Bush Tax Cuts" made permanent by a Dem congress, which would be a huge victory.
 
I know he's bruised and battered, but the president is quite good at the "rope-a-dope" method of sparring. I can't believe that he would go out and call for something like this without having an ace up his sleeve that would provide the longer-term solution that you commented about.
 
All the best,
 
Steve in Chicago