As a former resident of Silver Spring, Md., I was particularly interested to watch this video from Reason.tv, which makes my one-time hometown a case study for Obama’s stimulus failure. The vid is long, but well worth watching from start to finish because it reflects the reality of the stimulus rather than the theory behind it — a theory that liberals still invoke even in the face of astonishing evidence of the failure of the stimulus. Sure, it sounds as though it would be effective to inject money into areas of the economy in need of a jolt — but, unfortunately, the government can rarely be trusted to spend taxpayer money in a manner that actually would create jobs.

Theoretically, for the stimulus to have worked, the government would have had to target idle resources. Instead, the government funneled money into already-existing government contracts. Similarly, for the stimulus to have worked, state leaders would have had to spend stimulus money on top of what they were already spending. All too often, they used stimulus dollars to cover general expenses rather than to increase overall spending. And on and on …

As economist Veronique de Rugy says at the end of the video, “The main lesson of the stimulus is creating jobs is a very complex process and, certainly, it can’t be directed by a top-down institution that pretty much fails at everything it does.” Bingo.