Half a million on unemployment last month. Half a million more on unemployment this month. In anticipation of President Obama, the economy honored the new President by throwing a million people under the bus. You could even say that the economy's opinion of the stimulus plan was, "we need less employees'.
Ok. So the 'proposed stimulus plan did not stop the economy from contracting. Will it stop another half million from being tossed on their butts next month? To use my favorite phrase, I didn't think so. How about in March? Will the stimulus plan change the flow of employees from outgoing to ingoing? I didn't think so.
If by the end of March two million more people are not working, does ANYONE think that retail sales will be anything but nightmarish? Will the stimulus plan help them? I didn't think so.
President Obama talks about saving two million jobs, but apparently, they have to be allowed to be lost to make that happen. Now I don't have to be a conspiracy nut to think Obama is letting things get bad so he can ride to the rescue. There is little or nothing he can do to prevent the slide that is already occurring, he rhetoric to the contrary. His stimulus plan serves three purposes: it is SOMETHING and people - as stupid as it is - want the government to DO SOMETHING; it is big enough that people can't say he is taking half measures; and it pays off a significant amount of his political base. What it won't do is prevent two to three million from losing their jobs in the first months of 2009. What it won't prevent is further deteriation of the economy. What it won't do is STIMULATE the economy.
But, Congress is going to pass it, and Obama is going to sign it. And then they can sigh and sit back and watch A REAL RECESSION. Federal borrowing is going to crowd out everything - but since it is now the lender of any resort....
We talked about what would really work on the radio show Tuesday: a federal tax holiday of 3 or 4 months. No federal income tax or social security tax collection. Benefit 1: immediate money in consumers pockets; successful businesses will have more money to keep or hire in the face of a declining economy; less borrowing by the Federal Government. Of course, it will not happen. No one in Washington wants to face what will happen AFTER the holiday. If you think people are grumpy after returning to work on Monday, wait till you see how people respond to the re-imposition of tax collection on their paychecks. Congress and the President KNOW that will start a revolution that would make 1775 look like a stern look.
So, the President and Congress COULD stop this train wreck from happening if they were more concerned with Americans than their own power. Do you think they even remotely considered it? I didn't think so.