It was interesting watching the testimony of economists in the past week, how academic all their suggestions seemed to be. They mostly all said that giving people money would help, but only if done quickly. Empirical and historical evidence seemed to be strangely lacking. Surely this has been done before…what have we learned besides 'do it quickly'?
The paper out of Berkeley apparently showed such packages were not all that effective, going all the way back to Eisenhower. People only actually spent 20-40 percent of the free money. What do you expect?? When people feel their economic situation is getting worse, do you really expect them to blow money you give them on cheap Chinese goods? Most people will probably pay their defaulting mortgage, rent, or credit card debt with the money.
If the US Government really needed us to go out and spend the money…they should put it on non-cashable credit cards! Better yet, they should take the $600x'however many people make less than 75K per year' and invest it directly into preferred industries. But I guess they've chosen to pass the money though the people like good Republicans and let the people decide how to spend it. Silly.