How to Spend the Stimulus

Barack Obama wanted a bill that would jump-start the economy and invest in the future. Congress has larded it with wasteful spending and special-interest tax cuts. Here's how to get it right

Callie Shell / Aurora for TIME

Obama left the details of his stimulus plan up to congressional Democrats. When the bill faltered, he asked them to strip out the pork.

It's hard to take Republican leaders too seriously when they criticize the recovery plans for the economy; it's sort of like those geese criticizing the evacuation plans for US Airways Flight 1549. Their critiques seem even more comical when you see their alternatives. They warn that President Obama's stimulus package will explode the debt--so they want to make George W. Bush's debt-exploding tax cuts permanent. They say Democratic spending plans are full of pork--then they propose an extra $24 billion for the Army Corps of Engineers, the federal equivalent of Oscar Mayer. Let's just say their idea bank could use a...

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