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Argument: US stimulus charts path to better government programs

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Robert Kuttner. "Time to Think Big". American Prospect. February 10, 2009 - Looking forward, we need a very different sort of economy, one that restores a balanced form of capitalism. At the core of this change is a long-term increase in public outlay, investing in areas vital to economic growth and social decency. Once the recession is over, this increase in public investment needs to be paid for with a more progressive tax system. The short-term stimulus – if it is large enough – will help compensate for collapsing private demand. But the stimulus package should be understood as a down payment on increased federal spending for social and economic needs that have been deferred for four decade

An enhanced federal role, in turn, provides the moment to reclaim the public philosophy of activist government that effectively services people’s needs where market forces fail. With a serious commitment to public investment, ordinary people would once again get real value for their tax dollars, as they did in the era between 1932 and 1968.

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