One of my favorite Mad TV sketches features Bob Newhart, as a therapist whose only advice to any patient was contained in two words: Stop it! When a woman who suffers from an irrational fear of being buried alive in a box comes in, his advice is the same: "Stop it!" No matter what inner difficulties the woman brought up, the therapist’s answer was always “Stop it!” I heartily recommend that our lawmakers see Bob Newhart’s most recent rendition of therapy.
One of President Barack Obama’s first initiatives as the chief executive is to implement an economic stimulus package that he repeatedly tells his countrymen is designed to save the American economy from the catastrophes of tax cuts and capitalism.
It should not be too surprising that Democrats wish to pass a package that would be the more invasive than any government measure into the economy since the New Deal, at a time when the current hardships are still nowhere near those endured during the Great Depression, which was only exacerbated because of those interventions. In short, the stimulus package is not so much meant to stimulate the economy, but an initiative to create more political capital for the new president. One portion that has since been excluded from the package, perhaps due to its sheer odiousness, was bailout money for Planned Parenthood (I don’t know about any of you, but I don’t believe the killing industry has any shortage of business).
The more President Obama says some version of "We have to do something because to do nothing would be worse," more people will get scared, remain scared, and eventually begin to believe it. Think of it as a Patriot Act for Democrats.
The Democratic president disparages the Bush tax cuts, one of his predecessor’s finest measures, because the national debt skyrocketed and our nation’s financial institutions crumbled during the final months of the lame duck administration. In other words, the new president is trying to tell us that the economy is teetering toward collapse because Americans were allowed to have more money in their paycheck, and nothing to do with the ridiculous spending spree President Bush and the Republicans went on. President Obama’s prescription for economic recovery seems to be, don’t cut taxes, but go on a ridiculous spending spree. President Bush’s problem was not that he cut taxes, but that he cut taxes, and then did not begin reducing the size of the government to compensate for the lost revenue. President Obama wants to leave taxes where they are, for the time-being it would seem, and then increase the size of the federal government.
Now that the Democratic-bashing portion of the blog is through, let us move on to the Democrats’ henchmen.
What should be more surprising, but that I fear is not, is that the Republicans are willing co-participants in this mad spending scheme as well.
How? you might say, didn’t every House Republican vote against the stimulus bill as it appeared in the House of Representatives? Yes, but every House Republican voted against a massive spending bill that could have caused revolts among their constituents had they voted for it, and every House Republican voted against a massive spending bill that did not need any of their votes.
The Democrats have such a strong majority in the House that they got the bill passed without any Republicans. By voting against the bill out of pure political expediency, they avoided the heat from their home districts. While many Republican cheerleaders on talk radio praised the Republicans and suggested that they might be returning to their fiscal principles, their votes meant nothing because the bill still passed.
By having nothing to lose by doing so, they voted against it. We still need time to see if the Republicans have made a prodigal journey back to fiscal sanity.
But what really made me reach for the Tums is what the party’s senators began attempting once the package reached their chamber.
When Democrats first suggested a $300 billion stimulus package, the Republicans gave the nod to them and then some: they said $445 billion would be just fine.
Republican senators want to give tax credits to homeowners since the housing market bubble has utterly popped. A tax credit, which sounds like it might be good, is really just another manifestation of welfare. Whereas a tax cut in the form of George W. Bush or Ronald Reagan, allows the taxpayer to keep more of their income in their paycheck, a tax credit is a check from the federal government, with money that was printed from out of nowhere.
We can honestly say that we have a bipartisan government.
President Obama, during his never-ending campaign, said that he would bring Americans together and help heal our partisan wounds. Well, all that has happened since he took office is bring Republicans and Democrats together in a massive feast of pork. The parties are fighting over how much money should be in these stimulus packages and that should sound off alarms to conscientious citizens.
The only debate occurring over the spending bills are regarding how much should be spent and on what. There is no debate regarding whether so much money should be spent in the first place.
People seem to have forgotten that one short year ago, President Bush introduced a stimulus package to help boost a slumping economy. The stimulus did nothing to stop the collapse and nationalization of Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and Lehman Brothers. President Bush’s massive spending bill did nothing to stop the impending economic disaster. President Obama’s massive spending bill is even more massive and will only exacerbate the problem and ultimately cause more suffering for reasons already illuminated.
My prescription for the economy is to actually do very little. The current system cannot fix the disaster. It has been the invasive bipartisan federal government of this country that has caused this disaster.
Another appealing solution is to simply eliminate the Federal Reserve, that corrupt printer of bad money, which is the topic of Thomas E. Woods’ forthcoming book, Meltdown, A Free Market Look at Why the Stock Market Collapsed, the Economy Tanked, and Government Bailouts will Make Things Worse.
Let this prescription for the horrific levels of spending and bad money be quick and to the point: Stop It!