Stimulus Warning: Don't Mess With Joe

Vice President Joe Biden warned that he would personally embarrass anyone who misused stimulus money.

That's right. The former lawmaker "warned that he plans to use 'the moral approbation of this office' to make sure the huge fund of stimulus money is put to use creating jobs and rebuilding the nation's infrastructure,' according to a story by the AP. "'As we go along, I'm going to be a bit of a pain in the neck.'"

Biden and others in the administration, including President Obama himself, have been on a campaign to reassure taxpayers the $787 billion in stimulus funding will be well spent. As procurement specialists have pointed out, that's going to be a tall order given the shortfall in federal and state workers to oversee the spending.

Please share what you think about the stimulus plan. Will it work? Can the government oversee so much spending in such a short time? Does it matter?

By the way, a couple of powerful lawmakers want to take a deeper look at how we got here. Senators Byron Dorgan and John McCain are joining forces in a call for a "select committee" to "fully investigate the causes of the financial crisis and make recommendations to ensure that a crisis of this magnitude does not happen again in the future."

They're announcing their legislation later today. It could be interesting. These are the guys who examined the Jack Abramoff lobbying scandal. A statement said they "believe a select committee is needed to restore the confidence of the American people in the economy."

Stay tuned.

By Robert O'Harrow |  March 3, 2009; 10:33 AM ET stimulus
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Comments

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It seems that John McCain is clearly struggling to find a niche, and is still pushing to have that spot be in the area of the economic or financial issues confronting our nation. Unfortunately, the reality is that we all remember what happened when he "temporarily suspended" his campaign to rush back to DC to help with the economic crisis - he made matters much worse. He has also been more than a little out of control this week with his ranting about, what else? Earmarks of course, and he cannot tell a good reason for spending from a bad one. Like most other Republicans, his only good reason for spending is a tax cut, and we saw what the last round of tax cuts did for the economy - nothing good (well, I guess it was good for the ultra-wealthy McCain family, just not for the rest of us...). So, although I think it is important to find out the details of what went wrong in the economy, McCain is hardly suited, either intellectually or by nature, to be involved in such a pursuit. Let's have folks who understand the economy and are not running for office handle this one, please!

Posted by: rmcdetal | March 4, 2009 12:09 PM

Will the stimulus work? Difficult to say but apparently not difficult to criticize. It would be beyond reason to expect the pundits, gurus, big mouths, etc. to just take a deep breath, remember that those who developed this stimulus plan are intelligent people from a wide variety of backgrounds.Couldn't everyone just shut up, especially on CNBC, and wait and see what happens. The plan is in place.If the plan works wonderful,if not have at it. But Kudlow please give other people credit for having some sense, maybe not as much as you think you have, but some sense.

Posted by: rlthorn1 | March 4, 2009 1:33 PM

to Mccain ..THE problem is with the outsourceing of American Jobs ...By not paying out the Retirement pension...SS..to Senoir, by not given our Soldier equal pay(halliburton -truckdriver $ 220 000 to Soldier driving Trucks less the $ 20,000....By hireing Blackwater etc..
BUT selling off local banks to overseas banks..NOT control...BY not having local bank ..do mortgages for homeowners..BY not having the POWER to lower >>gasprices in 2008 (up to $ 4.00 a gallon) By not using the DEPARTMENT of ERNERGY(created in 1974) monies to build MASS TRANSPORTATION from the East coast to the Westcoast to/Alaska to cap Horn (upps we have that one) how about a bus that me grandchildern can tkae on there "OWN" to come and visit Grandpa and me!WE need massstransportation for STUDENT to get to colleges and Home for the weekend..WE have 85 000 students here can you imagine the Parkspace it would take "IF" all of the drive! And for a cheap fare most of them probably go Home for the WEEKEND(need a good meal )ALSO IT WOULD INCREASE the TOURIST VISITORS from overseas..no need to have driverlicense or incurance ..saving to tourist.
love your country

Posted by: sigup | March 4, 2009 2:19 PM

Eventually the stimulus plan will succeed. However President Obama, Geithner, and Summers are doing a horrible job of building confidence. People are not going to spend and invest until they believe in the future. Add that to this Republican party who wants Obama to fail so more people will suffer. Why? Because this Republican party feels it can only win in 2010 on negatives.

Posted by: Frames | March 4, 2009 3:18 PM

It has not worked in the past. I do hope it works this time but I don't have much confidence that this will be the case. I know that the point of business is to make money, but at what cost? Sending jobs to other countries does not work for America. We were once the food basket of the world, but no longer. Instead we purchase our food from other countries. We were once the leaders in manufacturing, that is no longer true either. We once made the best products, now that is the function of third world countries. Our exports do not equal our imports - an omnimous sign for any economy. America will recover. However I fear it will not be the America of my memories. Hello Social America.

America is the greatest nation but it will not continue on that course with socialization.

Posted by: PattyMcc | March 4, 2009 3:50 PM

I wonder how many of our Congresspeople will be above and below the $250,000 threshhold for increased taxes.

Wouldn't it be helpful to see how those on each side vote on this budget? My guess is that it would help us common folk understand how uncommon our Congresspeople are, compared to us regular folks. Those of us in windbreakers are electing the tuxedo class. No wonder the income gap has widened so much.

Posted by: bulldog6 | March 4, 2009 4:34 PM

I have a lot more confidence in a Frontline investigation than one by Congress, particularly one by John McCain who, as a sitting Republican of what 20+ years, should take some accountability for deregulation.

Posted by: rubyslipperstwo | March 5, 2009 11:54 AM

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