This week, ClickBack asked editorial page readers to consider the effect of the federal economic stimulus package. Specificially, we asked the $789 billion question — will it work? Look for more ClickBack questions in Monday’s editorial column, and participate at bangordailynews.com
Will the stimulus work?
The economy is in bad shape but it is not the worst shape it has been in. Unemployment is at 7.6 percent; not good, but most other countries would love to have it. Inflation rate is hovering somewhere around 4 percent and that puts the dreaded misery index at around 12 percent. Anyone remember the ’70s? The misery index was in the high teens! We are not in such a dire position that the federal government should be spending a trillion on a bill the taxpayers know so little about.
I think, at this point, it will help; if enough is used for middle class tax breaks and job creation. The housing industry is a total mess, the lenders who gave loans to people they knew couldn’t pay — hoping to sell again after foreclosure — should not get one dime.
So there is to be no dissent. We pass our debt, due to our stupidity, to children not yet old enough to vote, and if they don’t starve first, their children. I’m embarrassed that this undemocratic rush job will have all our names on it.
At least this stimulus creates jobs and helps states, unlike the TARP bailout which seemed to subscribe to the theory that if the rest of us would just give our money to the wealthy, they’d let enough trickle back down to keep us in work boots and macaroni, at least until the rent is paid.
Although it is not the preferred outcome, is not failure a possible outcome anymore? If you make bad decisions then you see bad results. If businesses like mortgage companies and banks spent years reaping huge profits off the American public only to have it implode when those debts go bad, so what! They failed to make sound, prudent business decisions based on proven financial lending practices, so they should suffer. I just can’t buy into this whole notion of putting the entire country on the government mammary.
The only thing that will create and keep jobs in the United States is to do away with NAFTA and go back to a hefty tariff on imported manufactured goods. NAFTA and other related programs were created by senators and representatives with wide open pockets for those back door donations by manufacturers who knew they could build it cheaper, import it and charge more for it, while telling all the consumers it was too expensive to make here in the States. I have not had a good-fitting pair of shoes since shoes were made in Asia.