Fiscal and monetary policy are often uncoordinated and working at cross purposes due to the fact that monetary policy is intended to be independent of fiscal policy. However, for either to be effective, the two should be somewhat coordinated. Jared Bernstein, former Chief Economist and Economic Adviser to President Obama, recently opined about the difficulties of coordinating the two. Ben Bernanke, former chair of the Board of Governors also noted that fiscal policy can create headwinds for effective monetary policy. Paul Krugman and Mike Woodford (quoted twice (first link) within (second link) Krugman’s article) also make points that fiscal and monetary policy are more effective when controlled in tandem.
However, there are varying feelings about whether or not monetary policy even works. Scott Sumner, noted advocate of NGDP targeting, talks of how fiscal policy does not have the capacity to truly affect the economy in the necessary ways, and that the interest on reserve rate can be used in a variety of ways.
While you might consider thinking about this relationship in the U.S., China and other countries also have an interesting relationship between fiscal and monetary policy. Think about addressing whether or not fiscal and monetary policy in the U.S. can be better coordinated, or if automatic fiscal stabilizers are sufficient to address any shortfalls on its own. Monetary policy in the U.S. might have to simply operate in spite of whatever happens in Congress. Other countries like China do not have the same issues, and in fact their government is more than able to coordinate policy (to at least some degree). Are there other countries around the world that have it better (or worse) than the U.S. or China? What might be an optimal setup? If the fiscal and monetary authorities are independent, what are the implications of them operating at cross purposes? Feel free to address any of these issues as they pertain to the U.S., China, or some other country. This is a relatively free-range discussion, so please simply try to make some sort of cogent, supported point.