The Opening Act
Tyler Cowen is pleased that tax cuts are making up such a large part of Obama's stimulus:
It's already a talking point that "the Democrats have lost their nerve" but the reality is not so devious. Obama wishes to deliver on his pledge to cut taxes (always electorally popular) and upon close inspection the economic team probably hasn't found a lot of first-year stimulus spending it likes. That leads to this obvious policy conclusion and of course it is very good news. No, I do not think these tax cuts will drive recovery but a) less money will be wasted, and b) it shows that the Obama team is willing to flinch and be realistic, not just as a final compromise but indeed as an opening gambit.
I don't want to jinx it, but so far, the Obama transition has been two things - focused fundamentally on what works, and finding a way to bring as many people into the coalition as possible. It's immensely impressive.