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July 08, 2009

Lindsay Beyerstein on CNN at 12:15 EDT

Tune in live.


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Was stuck at work. If you could find the video posted online, it would be most appreciated!

CNN says they'll send me a link when it goes live. I'll post it.

What are you on for?

Can you give us a brief summary?

What Count Zero and Eric Jaffa said.

The segment was about whether we need a second stimulus. I think we should have made the original stimulus bigger and designed it differently. Obama and congress decided to cram their entire domestic agenda into the Recovery and Reinvestment Act and lost sight of the object of the exercise: Infusing a lot of money into the economy very quickly in order to put money in the pockets of ordinary people who will spend it on goods and services and get the economy moving again. A lot of the money in the stimulus is going to worthwhile projects like comparative efficacy research and the smart power grid that will spend out relatively slowly. We should have spent more on stuff like food stamps and enhanced UI benefits and hiring childcare workers at the state level. There was money for those kinds of things in the stimulus, but there should have been more.

I didn't know I was going to do the segment until about half an hour before the show. My friend Megan from Jezebel was scheduled to do the show, but she had a scheduling conflict, so she kindly recommended me.

Good for you.

I spent the day in Toronto on business, so could not see it.


i wuz tuna fishin. give up da link pls.

Another problem with the stimulus bill:

WASHINGTON — When President Barack Obama increased unemployment benefits as part of his economic stimulus, he also made some Americans ineligible for hundreds of dollars a month in food stamps.

Under the economic recovery plan, laid-off workers have seen a $25 weekly bump in their unemployment checks as part of a broad expansion of benefits for the poor. But the law did not raise the income cap for food stamp eligibility, so the extra money has pushed some people over the limit.

...Lawmakers crafting the stimulus knew this would become a problem, said Stacy Dean, director of food assistance policy at Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a liberal think tank. They could have headed it off by raising the income tax or declaring that the $25 stimulus checks would not affect food stamp eligibility. Both were expensive options that could have forced states to reprogram their computer systems.

It's incredible that members of Congress thought that getting people food wasn't worth updating state computers.

Such an update shouldn't be "expensive." It should be easy to update for such an adjustment. If not, then the software is so badly designed that it was overdue for an update.

Eric, $25 per week is a bit higher than the maximum food stamp benefit per person, which is $3/day.

Lindsay, is there any link available now?

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