It's the second New Beginning for the White House in less than a week. Today, President Obama and Vice President Obama lay concrete for a "Road to Recovery" tour, which is supposed to highlight how quickly stimulus dollars are being spent. Suffice it to say.... even though this PR gimmick was planned for a while, if the White House were fully comfortable with how the stimulus package was playing -- and how well it was working, it would not be worth the President's time. There is rising concern about deficits, both from the American people, who are naturally skeptical of them, and from Wall Street, which is pricing in the crowding out effect of dollars on investment. Unemployment remains stubbornly high, although the rate of growth seems to be slowing. And the White House's efforts to sell the stimulus package as a success haven't worked; when, a few weeks, a similar "tour" was launched, reporters mocked the White House, and several assertions by the administration turned out to be incomplete or based on faulty information. A small fraction of the money has been spent. That's to be expected, given how complex it is to actually spend money, but the perception is hurting the White House, evidently, enough. The buzzwords are: quicker, smarter, bigger. How will the White House actually accelerate stimulus spending? Or will it attempt to convince people that the stimulus is working by traveling around the county and providing anecdotes?
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