The Corner

Roads, Keynesians, Oh My

Okay, let me see if I can clarify without back-peddling too much in re last night’s comments.

As far as the “We’re all Keynsians now” line, no I don’t really believe we are all Keynians now. I was merely invoking Nixon’s famous lament to point out that whenever we hit a recession or other economic downturn, the entire political class caves to Keynsian expediency and starts shoveling frogskins out the front door.

One criticism I think is valid is that Huckabee’s proposal wouldn’t provide any short term stimulus. I agree. But I’m pretty skeptical that the rebate thing will have any effect either. As I indicated last night, my first option would still probably be do nothing. But that’s not the political situation we’re in.

Third, I probably agree 91% with Ramesh about market efficiencies, privatization and the like when it comes to roads. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t build more roads and that doesn’t mean that $150 billion wouldn’t be better spent on infrastructure than on rebates.

As for t he China comment, I agree with Ramesh 100% on the policy point. But as I said, I think it was smart politics.

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