Hindsight rant: How the stimulus package could have stimulated


President Obama and Congress approved the recent $700 billion stimulus package for one crucial reason: to provide jobs.

Now, states and other recipients of this windfall are struggling to launch thousands of projects that won't be sufficiently mature enough to provide jobs for some time.

Yet there was a way that this money could have been put to work immediately, with a guarantee that it would have a dramatic impact on the nation's employment figures.

We should have given it to our social service agencies.

In states like Ohio, public health agency programs and staff have been cut to the quick, throwing thousands of people out of work. Meanwhile, one of the few local American Recovery Act road projects to break ground has provided work for 13 workers to date.

It does no good to create 100 new jobs when 10,000 lose theirs because of state revenue shortfalls. It does no good to sit on piles of cash waiting month after month for paperwork to trickle through the system.

Originally published