[LINK] Off Topic - Economic stimulus

Birch, Jim Jim.Birch at dhhs.tas.gov.au
Thu Aug 12 11:44:46 AEST 2010

Hi Robin

>  http://market-ticker.org/archives/2010/08/03.html

This isn't an economics list so I won't go into it, but the junk
arguments on that market-ticker page are zombies that have been dealt
with elsewhere.  Might I suggest you try the recent archives of
krugman.blogs.nytimes.com for an alternative plain language view of the
US deficit and the appropriate level of their stimulus then see what you

> I think schools were an attractive target because there are plenty of
people who could construct school buildings, and most of the
materials are presumably locally manufactured.

Correct.  The stimulus was targeted to "capture" as much as of the
spending - and the flow on multiplier - in the local economy.  Moreover,
the construction is one of the first and biggest things to flop in a
downturn so the focus on this sector is appropriate.  One major problem
with the cheques to individuals is the leakage into imports.

> The whole thing is highly reminiscent of Soviet-style "centrally
planned economy" approach - complete with the monuments.  That
approach is arrogant and very wasteful.

I'd worry more about the real effects on people's lives - not to mention
effects on the governments financial position - of having an economy
running well below potential, even if we get a few "monuments."
Unemployment is waste too, even if less conspicuous.

BTW one of my children's schools got a much needed extension to the main
assembly area to a realistic size so it now can actually fit the school
community without the parents standing out in the rain wondering what's
going on.  Useful in Tasmania, at least.  Not sure about the high


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