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The 787-billion economic stimulus bill has to be praised for its audacity, and the confidence that it will work. In any case, it will be a test case of Keynesian economics for some time to come.

At the policy level, there are two clear and welcome shifts:

  • The government will run the economy. Not to dis anyone, but Wall Street simply does not have the broad interest base and intellectual depth to run the economy.
  • The long-term standard of living of the US citizen is tied to his/her output and efficiency, and the US will embrace emerging technologies and industries, where the US worker can add the most value — even at the expense of existing industries. The US auto industry of today is the steel industry of a few decades ago: if it goes, so be it.

The sheer boldness and policy shift of this bill ensures its success at some level, if not all.