Thursday, February 5, 2009

More Stimulating Conversation

President Obama has said of the Senate stimulus package, "Let’s not make the perfect the enemy of the essential."

This is essential?!

$800 million for Amtrack
$100 million to teach children about green construction
$150 million for the Smithsonian
$1 billion for Head Start
$14 million for travel expenses for a goverment board
$75 million for smoking cessation programs

Much of the nearly $1 trillion, of which less than 25% can really be called "stimulus," would not even be spent in the next year.

Some liberal groups have run ads attacking the GOP for not supporting Mr. Obama's stimulus plan; the other side should counter with the same.

They should ask the American tax payers if they want to saddle their children with over $10,000 per family for spending programs like those mentioned above.

Even if these are worthwhile programs, they're not stimulus. They should go through the normal budgeting process. (Of course, the cynics would say this is Congress' normal budgeting process.)

The problem with this whole situation is this notion that government can spend our way back into prosperity. Did this not start with out of control spending?

Where is the government planning to get all of this money? They have only three options:

They can borrow money, further reducing the available credit. Or they can print money. Or they can raise taxes (of course, eventually they'll do that either way).

The first option would only exacerbate the credit problem. The second and third would be death blows to an already sick economy.

The only solution to this mess is to add capital to the economy by real tax cuts -- not just a few hundred dollars for low to middle income families but real cuts for the people (and corporations) who can create real jobs. Only by removing "impediments to work, saving, investment and production" can the government save our economy.

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