The New York Times has a news article running under the headline "New Consensus Views Stimulus as Worthy Step" that is ridiculous even by New York Times standards. Says the Times, "with roughly a quarter of the stimulus money out the door after nine months, the accumulation of hard data and real-life experience has allowed more dispassionate analysts to reach a consensus that the stimulus package, messy as it is, is working.The legislation, a variety of economists say, is helping an economy in free fall a year ago to grow again and shed fewer jobs than it otherwise would." The article relies heavily on analysis by Moody's, the same organization that was stamping AAA ratings on all those mortgage backed securities that didn't turn out so well. Not even honest partisan Democrats buy this argument; even White House economic adviser Lawrence Summers said, "It is too early to know how successful our policies have been. It is not even clear how we will know ultimately whether they have succeeded, because of the difficulty of constructing a counterfactual and knowing what would have happened without intervention," and the Democratic chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, Max Baucus, said, "You created a situation where you cannot be wrong. ...If the economy loses 2 million jobs over the next few years, you can say yes, but it would've lost 5.5 million jobs. If we create a million jobs, you can say, well, it would have lost 2.5 million jobs...You've given yourself complete leverage where you cannot be wrong, because you can take any scenario and make yourself look correct."