Wednesday, February 27, 2008

That Damn Stimulous Package

Our President and both house leaders just whipped up an economic stimulus package. I really don’t have much faith in the prospect of these three “leaders” planning further than next years elections. There is no question that Bush, Pelosi and Reid came up with something because they can’t ignore our economic crisis any longer. This stimulus plan will amount to an estimated $150 billion and will be inadequate to drive sustainable growth in our $13 trillion economy.
The presidential candidates of both parties have an obligation to adjust the public policy mistakes of the past quarter-century that have led to this crisis. Only through hard decisions will we be able to steer our economy away from the brink of disaster.
The fiscal policies of the past decade have led to a national debt that amounts to $9 trillion. The free trade policies of Democratic and Republican administrations over the past 30 years have produced a trade debt that now amounts to more than $6 trillion. All of which is contributing to the plunge in the value of the U.S. dollar.
We have become ever more dependent on foreign producers for everything from clothing to technology to energy and our weakened dollar is making the price of an ever-increasing number of imported goods even more expensive. Consumers spend most of their money on foreign imports, and any stimulus package probably would be stimulating foreign economies rather than our own. Why? As I wrote last summer, you cant find quality merchandise that’s Made in USA, actually you cant find much at all.
NAFTA, and now CAFTA, have done serious damage to the US economy because of the short sightedness in their attempt to stimulate economic growth. Each could be eliminated or at least modified. Problem is, corporations have leapfrogged right over this continent and have taken advantage of the cheaper labor and unregulated pollution concerns in the East Asia countries including China.
Our jobs have left Kingston, New York State, and finally our national borders. The remaining corporations have headquarters based in the Caymans to avoid taxes. Our local leaders are expected to bring jobs and prosperity to the community, but mind my words, this stipend coming from the government in the form of a stimulus package will merely lessen the pain temporarily for those of us who know the recession is coming. Tighten your belts, put your money away and don’t get sick.

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