China’s stimulus is working, why isn’t ours?

The comments from Caterpillar CEO Jim Owens at the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, keep dribbling out in the press. I wish some newspaper would make this front page news. Killer quote:

“Sales picked up in February, as the Chinese stimulus spigot opened, and excavators again are selling at a record pace, Owens said. The quick turnaround comes in part because the Chinese government essentially moved up the budget from the back two years of its five-year plan and is spending the money now. The U.S. government has enough trouble passing an annual budget, much less a five-year plan. And even the parts of the $819 billion stimulus program targeted toward construction will not get there as fast. ”

The bigger problem is that most of the U.S. stimulus dollars will end up in the paychecks of white collar, chairborne rangers, many of these people already employed by various government agencies. Construction got a pittance in this bill and manufacturing, the best engine of real job growth, got nothing.