Critics question homebuyer tax credit

Push for extension stimulates debate

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The first-time homebuyer tax credit is "an extremely ineffective stimulus," which, like the $700 billion Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), "mainly rewards the very people who got us into this mess. It’s a futile attempt to blow just a little bit more air into the real-estate bubble."

Those views — put forward Tuesday in an opinion piece by MarketWatch’s Washington bureau chief, Rex Nutting — may reflect growing public sentiment against additional taxpayer-funded measures to stimulate the economy.