The latest job numbers are discouraging. The economists’ debate on the stimulus package will go on forever. Fans will explain that it wasn’t big enough, it didn’t get spent quickly enough, it wasn’t focused enough, the rest of the world let us down, the situation was worse than we thought. Opponents will say that you can’t help the construction sector by keeping state employees working, borrowing crowds out private more productive investment, frenetic fiddling destroys confidence and discourages investment and risk-taking, the whole thing was a boondoggle for special interests and a third of the stimulus consisted of tax rebates which never do any good. The stimulus bill made things worse, not better.
That debate will never be settled. It will just rage on.