Social and Political Commentary

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More stimuli!

... doing my part

by Jerry Norton

Please allow me to offer a few observations regarding the government’s recent economic stimulus program and suggest further ways of improvement:

I fear that much has been lost when the Treasury bestowed its largesse on all taxpayers, regardless of age. The intention was that the money should quickly find its way into our sagging economy and, by an upswing in consumerism, quick-start the whole business cycle.

Now as to my rationale for suspending stimulus money to some of our younger citizens. It is well known that, in their relentless pursuit of the good life, they have become heavily encumbered with debt. But in good faith, and adopting a new attitude, many of them would use this money only to pay down that debt. Now this does not contribute to getting currency out in general circulation and defeats the purpose of the plan.

Speaking for myself and my ever-lovin’ wife, I can say that we quickly entered into the spirit of the program by using this windfall to adopt an entirely new and lavish lifestyle. Since we are debt-free, we were at liberty to regard this money as entirely discretionary income.

For example, our taste in wine has been dramatically upgraded in the last few months. Whereas before we confined ourselves to wine that was marketed in large jugs with screw tops, we now are given to a more sophisticated genre that requires a cork screw opener and would enjoy the approbation of Bacchus himself.

In this same spirit, suppose the elderly were to use this money in a reckless abandonment of their more frugal spending habits? Consider, if you will, the possible effect on the economy if each of us were to take our latest government gratuity ($250) and blow it all on a wild night on the town.

That would easily knock down a couple-billion dollars off the national debt and reduce the possibility of our having to speak Mandarin in a few more years.

Oh, and one more suggestion…with an eye to reducing the rapidly swelling unemployment roles of our nation. The Government Printing Office is looking for new hires to maintain the frantic pace required to print paper money in order to keep our banks and corporations afloat. This has resulted in a rapid turnover of its personnel due to workplace burn-out, thus creating a never-ending cycle of job vacancies.

And now, with a stiff upper lip and a never-flagging faith in our Government, strengthened by “The Audacity of Hope” - the possibilities are endless.

July 3, 2009

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