More Stimulus

Paul Krugman sounds the alarms about the need for additional stimulus, though he recognizes the political obstacles:

So getting another round of stimulus will be difficult. But it’s essential. […] So here’s my message to the president: You need to get both your economic team and your political people working on additional stimulus, now. Because if you don’t, you’ll soon be facing your own personal 1937.

Given the political obstacles, I worry about the wisdom of framing it this way. The funds appropriated in ARRA are only now beginning to flow, and the pace will increase over the next few months. A new political campaign for new stimulus couldn’t possibly produce new legislation—much less new actual expenditures—for quite a long time now. So while I’m not 100 percent up to speed on the mechanics of this, it seems to me that the best thing to do is probably to try to achieve additional stimulus through the regular congressional appropriations process that’s going to need to move forward over the next several months one way or the other. Just have congress take some useful programs that are appropriated at less than their authorized level, and jack up the appropriations.