The great recession

TCS Daily
by Alan W. Dowd


Given the dark economic outlook this time a year ago, it was hard to find a business or household that had the confidence — or audacity — to predict growth by the end of 2009, let alone double-digit growth. But that’s what Washington’s spending spree has done for the U.S. government. In fact, federal spending in the United States will mushroom from $2.98 trillion in 2008 to $3.93 trillion by the end of this year — an increase of 32 percent. The spending binge began under President Bush — $700 billion for the TARP behemoth and $17 billion-plus in automaker bridge loans were anything but pocket change — but it exploded under President Obama...

The administration is contemplating further stimulus

Independent Institute
by Robert Higgs


Republican partisans, willing to grasp and exploit any passing news that seems to discredit the ruling Democrats, trumpet the conclusion that ‘the stimulus has failed.’ I don’t dispute that it has failed and that it will continue to do so, but my reasons for this judgment have nothing to do with partisanship, inasmuch as I loathe both parties equally — indeed, I don’t regard them as two parties at all, but only as two wings of a predatory one-party state. In any event, though, there’s trouble in River City, and the politicians have naturally decided that ’something must be done,’ lest the peasants grow dangerously restive. Whence cometh a good deal of talk about ‘more stimulus,’ although administration spokespersons such as Larry Summers are quick to distance themselves from this phraseology, if not from the substance it denotes. So, what exactly do our glorious rulers have in mind?

The costs of Mideast wars

The American Conservative
by Patrick J. Buchanan


Obama is facing an awful choice. Committing 45,000 more troops to Afghanistan will not assure victory, McChrystal is telling the president, but denying him the 45,000 troops may ensure an American defeat. Being forced to make this Hobbesean choice will surely affect Obama’s decision on Iran. Seeing what a decade of war has done to his country, he cannot want a third war with a nation more populous than Iraq and Afghanistan combined. Yet that is where the sanctions regime is inevitably headed...

Informant: Thomas L. Knapp$700


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