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Thu

05

Feb

2009

Different Faces Selling the Same Old Product
Thursday, 05 February 2009 19:31
by Timothy Gatto

The message coming from Congress is loud and clear, gamesmanship will continue within the revered two-party system. It matters not that we are on the brink of a worldwide economic collapse; the true nature of this two-party system can readily be seen if only people would open their eyes. The politicians of both parties are more interested in posturing for the public than they are in actually working for the public. The Obama Economic Stimulus Package is a good case in point. Democrats and Republicans can’t seem to come to a reasonable agreement about how much money should be spent, and also what to spend it on. Instead of coming to a compromise on the stimulus package, both parties choose to ignore each other.

The Republicans claim that tax cuts will make a difference sooner than later, unlike some of the programs on the stimulus package which could mean years of investment without a payout. The Republicans came up with an alternative package that was fifty percent cheaper and would create almost 6.2 million jobs. The Democrats replied that this was another “trickle-down” economic theory that would give the lion’s share of the tax-cuts to the wealthy while ignoring the middle-class. Who is right and who is wrong on this subject?

The sad truth is that there are no right answers as of yet. It may take awhile before any stimulus plan makes a difference. The only thing that I can add is that the bailouts which according to Bloomberg have reached 8.5 Trillion dollars, has enabled those that created this mess to continue to run these banks and corporations deeper into the red while enjoying large salaries and bonuses.

There are better alternatives out there than the Democrat’s Economic Stimulus Package. Economists like Richard Cook have suggested that any stimulus money not be given to the same entities that put us in this predicament in the first place. He suggests that a real stimulus for the economy would be to give cash vouchers of $1800 for each adult and a lesser amount for minors. These vouchers would be used in lieu of cash for mortgage payments, utility payments and business investments. This would actually spur the economy by putting billions into the hands of the population who in turn would spend this money on the economy. The beauty of this simple plan would be that the people would end up choosing what companies would survive or fail.

The idea of a “trickle-up” economic model as opposes to a “trickle-down” one, is that every single citizen that gets this money in the form of vouchers, and will spend it and not try to hoard the money for a rainy day as some recipients of the first bailout have done. The government wants you to believe that the first “bailout” package was 800 billion dollars, yet most of us realize that to be a lie. How many more tax dollars will we spend throwing good money after bad? How many “bailouts” and “stimulus packages” will there be? Why are putting stimulus vouchers in the hands of consumers to spend wisely so radical of an idea? Corporations are recognized as people, yet they are responsible to no one except their shareholders and their only duty to them is to make a profit. Once the government showers them with taxpayer money, they’re duty-bound to use this money for profit, even if that means sending this money overseas in order to keep outsourced assets alive.

When will Americans understand that both political parties are cut from the same cloth? The people are continuously duped into believing that the ritual dance of the Democrats and the GOP is real. The fact is that they do this dance in order to keep the electorate thinking that they have some kind of choice on Election Day. The sad truth is that the same financial institutions and corporations that routinely rape the middle-class are the powers that lie behind the throne. Of all the Trilateral Commission members in the United States, fully 10% of them are working inside the Obama Administration.

So where has this two-party duopoly taken us? We are facing an abyss that could eventually swallow us all. Without a solid middle class to buy corporate products, without a strong middle class to use financial institutions and without a strong middle class to pay taxes, the corporations, financial institutions and the government itself will collapse. In this light, a stimulus package that pays individuals would mean that corporations would have their consumers, financial institutions would have their investors and customers and the government would have the backing of the people.


Tim blogs here and you can email him here

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