The debate over the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009--passed by the House today along party lines--might be divided into two subsections:
Question #1: Should the federal government run up the debt in order to stimulate the economy?
Question #2: Should our economic stimulus consist mostly of infrastructural spending, or should it focus primarily on temporary tax cuts?
The first question divides the reasonable and neanderthal right wing--and many local righty bloggers would appear to favor driving the economy over a cliff as a means of achieving ideological purity. But it's not a seriously-debated question among the masses, given the dire straits we're now in.
The second question might lead to an interesting debate--one in which honest conservatives could make economically-sound arguments about the greater efficiency and speed associated with temporary tax cuts, combined with additional massive federal borrowing. But that pesky 'honest' entry requirement would of course impede Erik Paulsen.
Rep. Erik Paulsen would enter such a debate having already painted himself into a corner. Paulsen is committed to the principle that all federal borrowing should be forever prohibited. So Paulsen is in a difficult position to argue on behalf of deficit-ballooning tax cuts as an alternative to ARRA-2009--unless he comes clean on his rookie economic error.
Erik Paulsen ran for Congress on an unsophisticated, self-contradictory economic message: cut taxes, permanently prohibit federal borrowing but allow a huge exception now.
Paulsen was interviewed today on KKMS--the tiny local Religious Right station at AM980--just before Ann Coulter, Dinesh D'Souza and a creationist Moonie. [Note to self: Prejudiced.] Before the Paulsen interview, the hosts promised to have the interview available on the station's website within an hour. And the Ann Coulter interview--that came just after Paulsen's--is available online. So I'd like to learn why the Erik Paulsen interview isn't there. Might Paulsen have disallowed the posting?