Tomorrow President Obama gives his State of the Union speech. Advance stories indicate that the speech will focus on the economy — no surprise there! — and that the President will call for more government “investment” in science, education, and innovation.
“Investment” is, of course, just a code word for more government spending. The only reason the word “stimulus” isn’t used any more is that it has acquired deadly connotations for American voters, who recognize that the initial “stimulus” package was a leaden failure that grossly increased the federal debt without producing much in exchange. Doesn’t “investment” in “education” and “science” sound an awful lot like using our tax dollars to pay for more government jobs? And as for “investment” in “innovation,” is there really anyone out there who thinks that members of Congress or government bureaucrats could distinguish true innovation from a cracked pumpkin?
We may find out tomorrow that the President has a great plan — but until then, color me skeptical. Whenever I hear the argument that the way out of our ongoing recessionary doldrums is still more government spending, I have the same horrified and anguished reaction as the poor, lost soul Richard depicted on the wonderful bit of “kid art” accompanying this posting.