CNN earlier today was running disturbing video of a man who fell through the ice of a pond in Weymouth, MA. He thankfully was rescued, but because of budget cuts, that almost didn't happen.And why does the stimulus program not include assistance to state and local governments? Because the stimulus program is designed as a PR tool to show that the Republican conservatives are taking action, and that action will be demonstrated as voters and business people get tax rebate checks. The stimulus program is about buying votes for conservatives, not about dealing with the recession. State and Local governments don't vote, so in spite of the fact that assistance to them would be one of the most effective forms of dealing with the on-rushing (conservative caused) recession, it will be avoided.
The Associated Pres reported: "Authorities say they were lucky to have the canoe to help the rescue. A fire station a half-mile from the pond has an ice boat, but the station was closed because of budget constraints." The Weymouth fire chief told the Boston Globe that "had it been open, the situation might have been less hazardous for the victim, who spent '20 to 30 minutes' in the frigid water."
If a recession hits, state government budgets will be squeezed further. But the stimulus package compromise between the White House and the House does not include additional support for state governments."
To conservatives, government has only one function. It is a great pot of money which is extracted from the poor and middle class to be redistributed to the wealthy conservatives. Public Relations, bribes and corruption are the primary functions of conservative-run government. Effective programs that don't perform those key functions are simply ignored.