In the immediate aftermath of the downturn of the economy post-Enron, President Bush suggested that Americans could help the economy if they "go shopping" -- a statement mocked by Barenaked Ladies in their song "Shopping."
It seems Pres. Bush and Democrats in Congress feel the same prescription is all that the economy needs to cure its current malaise. That's why instead of across the board tax cuts, AMT indexing or abolition, capital gains tax cuts and inflation indexing, eradicating the sunset provisions of the Bush tax cuts that are set to expire in 2010, rolling back the reach of SarbOx, cutting corporate income tax rates to a level competitive with Europe and Asia, and other useful remedies, the political branches are only considering doling out rebates to the middle class as a trick to get the economy growing faster.
It's simple shortsighted foolishness by the President who wants to help without a plan to do so effectively and political opportunism by the Democrats who have little incentive to take dramatic action because a bad economy helps their chances to re-take the White House.
It's a diseased political environment we live in.