As economic policy it might be suspect but Obama’s blitz of stimulus measures is probably more about politics. Over the weekend we got the next housing fix, then earlier today $50 billion for infrastructure and now a plan to let business write-off 100% of their expenses for plant and equipment additions.
From the WSJ:
President Barack Obama, in one of his most dramatic gestures to business, will propose that companies be allowed to write off 100% of their new investment in plant and equipment through 2011, a plan that White House economists say would cut business taxes by nearly $200 billion over two years.
A couple issues.
First, Congress has to approve this and that isn’t going to happen if it happens at all until after the elections.
Second, given the lack of demand and sales affecting most of the mid-sized and smaller businesses in the country, it’s questionable as to whether the existence of a tax break is going to induce them to add to productive capacity. Besides, capacity or the lack thereof isn’t the problem. We have too much of it right now.
Ain’t politics grand?