While it is easy to understand the appeal of Congress and the President passing out over $150 Billion to the American people, our economy needs more than another short-term, quick fix approach that could come at the expense of more important long-term, structural, public policy changes.OK, we agree on something. At least the hazy outline of the end state.
A stimulus to head off a recession can be a good idea,But for some reason, they have a history of not working.
but economists are split on whether or not now is one of those times, and even if it is, the stimulus must be properly targeted to get the money in the hands of people who will spend it immediately.Are you implying that putting it in the hands of people who would invest it, and thus allow businesses to make productive use of it, use that would generate jobs, is therefore bad? Is that your justification for why people who make less money are more deserving of a
tax refund advance stimulus payment than folks (who produce more value and thus) make more money?
Unfortunately, the House did not include the two quickest and best-targeted levers for stimulus: extended unemployment benefits and temporary food stamp increases.
You're kidding here, right? Giving someone without a job a few more months to lounge around sucking on the public tit is going to help the economy? How about shortening unemployment benefits, and encouraging folks to get off their asses and get a job? Food stamp increases? Huh? I hadn't noticed that agribusiness was in trouble, what with my escalating grocery bill, thanks to the
vote buying by Corn Belt Congresscritters corn ethanol fuel rules. You want to help poor people who can't afford groceries, you might think about repealing those instead. Then get rid of tariffs and import quotas on imported foodstuffs for a second act.
I am also concerned with the possibility that this legislation will become loaded with extraneous provisions in the Senate that do not have an immediate stimulus effect.But pork does have a stimulus effect, at least on incumbents' campaign funds.
The $150 billion price tag of this legislation will just add to our current fiscal problems, including our mountainous $9 trillion debt and the impending retirement of our nation's baby boomers. Time and again, we've used a philosophy similar to the one pushing this stimulus package-spending money now will help us now, so let's do it and not worry about the future.So, you agree with me that FDR and LBJ did a huge amount of damage with their New Deal and Great Society programs?
Or perhaps with the thought, expressed by de Tocqueville, "The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public's money," and that members of Congress should stop bribing the voters with out own money, as they've been doing lavishly since the 1930s.
Instead, to compete in new global market place, we must make several long term changes, including a more affordable health care system; And the best way to produce this is to get government, at all levels, out of the business of health care. But somehow I don't think that's what you envision.
a far better and more adaptable education and skills training policy;
Getting the government out of the business of providing education (but not necessarily funding) would do wonders in this area.
greater investment in innovation;
Again, getting the government the hell out of the way would do wonders here. I'm beginning to discern a pattern.
a better trade policy that recognizes the importance of worker's rights and environmental protections;So you want labor and environmental laws to cripple other countries they way they cripple us? When you actually take this stance with regards to, say, China, I might take you seriously. How about "you remove your barriers, we'll remove ours" and we stop dictating how other countries should run their own business. Or do you think that France should be able to demand that we adopt a 35 hour work week if we want free trade with them?
and significant improvements to the infrastructure of our country-roads, bridges,energy sources,So when are you going to stop the enviro-socialists from standing in the way of these?
and access to broadband to name just a fewLast I check, the commercial broadband providers were doing a pretty decent job of this, because they can make money doing it. So you and your Congressional compatriots just stay the hell out of the way, OK?
The federal government must also be fiscally sound and have the money necessary to make these long term changes.Actually, nothing I've mentioned would cost the government a single dollar.
That means we need to confront the ballooning costs of entitlement programs,How about we just abolish them, since I don't see any mention of them in Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution anyway?
get a tax code that people can understand,Then how come I've never seen you as an author or sponsor of a flat tax proposal?
reduce health care inflation,There are two areas of medicine where prices have gone down, not up: vision improvement surgery, and plastic surgery. Interestingly, neither of these are covered by most health insurance. Funny how when consumers can go price shopping, prices go down because of competition. What a novel idea.
and eventually come up with a foreign policy that gets us out of our current situation where we have to have a defense budget roughly equal to that of every other country in the world combined.
As long as we're the world's #1 Big Dog, there are going to be people who don't like us. Which means we can pay the cost to stay #1, or cringe, cower, and give way everytime some Third World shithead dictator waves his fist at us. Not to mention countries that aren't Third World shitholes and don't like us much, like China.
But it would get easier if we passed a flat tax to lower our overall tax rate (or haven't you noticed that every time since JFK that the income tax rate has been lowered,the economy has boomed) and drastically reduced our spending on programs that aren't mentioned anywhere in the Constitution?
None of this gets any easier if we dig our financial hole another $150 billion deeper for a short-term "fix" for our economic woes that is not well-targeted or well-timed.