Bipartisanship: A Marriage of Evil and Stupidity

Economist David Friedman sums up the flaws of the ridiculous “stimulus” plan that House leaders and the White House have proposed, which will run up the deficit to pay for welfare (in the form of “rebates”).

(I criticized the plan earlier, for giving “rebates” to people who do little work and pay no taxes (including a few rich people who benefit from major loopholes in the tax code), while denying rebates to middle-class families in high-living-cost areas based on arbitrary income limits).

The package is celebrated by politicians and establishment journalists as being “bipartisan.”

Friedman explains what “bipartisanship” means in the real world:

“‘IN AMERICA, WE have a two-party system,’ a Republican congressional staffer is supposed to have told a visiting group of Russian legislators some years ago. ‘There is the stupid party. And there is the evil party. I am proud to be a member of the stupid party.’ He added: ‘Periodically, the two parties get together and do something that is both stupid and evil. This is called bipartisanship.'”

As I noted earlier, the “stimulus” plan would also give expanded lending authority to the government-backed mortgage giant Fannie Mae, whose management engaged in Enron-style accounting fraud. Fannie Mae is one of the entities chiefly responsible for the real estate bubble that now threatens to cause a recession. If Fannie Mae goes under, the taxpayers are expected to pick up its tab.