Economic Stimulus Package

Quite honestly, I hate politics and I hate economics. Reading about the economic stimulus package almost infuriates me. There was an article on the front page of yahoo today: How the Economic Stimulus Plan Could Effect You. I couldn’t help but read it. My biggest issue is why are we creating a stimulus package that will merely increase the national debt essentially making even more of a burden on our children and grandchildren later down the road. My next issue is why are we helping the poor even more than we already have? When do we actually start encouraging people to get off their lazy asses and get a damn job? Why not stop sending so much labor and production overseas and actually leave the jobs for people within the country who could benefit from them? No, I don’t have all the answer, and I’m sure this wouldn’t solve even half the problems. But I was raised with one hell of a work ethic. It is really hard for me to take handouts and not work for what I have. I’ve had a full time job since I was 17 and have struggled to put myself through college. When is there ever going to be assistance for the middle/working class? The way the governement works now, it seems as if they want to help out the poor while allowing anyone above the poverty level to just keep getting themselves further and further in debt.

Ok, rant over. Thoughts?

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6 Responses

  1. When do we actually start encouraging people to get off their lazy asses and get a damn job?

    Because the damn jobs have been disappearing at a terrible rate. The economy’s has shed a million since November, and nearly four million since December 2007. Under those conditions, it does no good to bitch at people for being lazy. The availablility of eager workers does nothing to convince business owners to hire them, if the business owners don’t think they’ll be able to sell their goods. And in an economic climate like this, people ARE NOT SPENDING MONEY. The point of a stimulus bill is to change that situation by pumping money directly into the economy in ways that will, we hope, lift spending levels and employment along with it.

    And if you seriously think that there’s no “assistance for the middle/working classes,” being angry at the poor does no good, either. Most of the economic gains since 1980 have gone into the pockets of the wealthiest 20%, and most of all to the top 1%. Meanwhile, real wages (adjusted for inflation) have diminished for the bottom half, with greater losses the farther down the scale you look. Poor people are worse off now than they’ve been in decades.

  2. Have you checked any job classifieds lately? There are still many available jobs. Unfortunately, that might mean people have to take a job that is “below them.” Yeah, I realize that it might not be the most ideal situation to take some unskilled labor position, but at least it is work. I’d take a job at McDonald’s or Walmart before I looked for free handouts. Until people have exhausted all their resources to keep themselves and their families fed and sheltered, then they shouldn’t be looking for handouts.
    I agree with you that the economic gains have been going into the pockets of the wealthiest people….there is a problem with that. But aside from communism I’m not really sure of a solution to that problem.
    In all honesty, I think it is a good thing that people have stopped spending so much money. Most people in our country are living well beyond their means. How many people have thousands upon thousands of dollars in credit card debt? Not to mention mortgages and auto loans. We have made it far too easy to encourage people to keep spending money they don’t have. This is why the economy is the way it is. So maybe its going to take a huge crash for people to realize they need to pull their heads out of their asses and only spend money they actually have……

  3. Oooh! A fight! I don’t think Bilbo is a class member, but welcome anyway!

    The only thing I’ll add to this is just a basic factual point, which is that the stimulus bill contains very few provisions that would qualify as “handouts.” Most of the tax cuts — which make up about 40% of the bill — go to the middle and upper classes as well as to businesses. Most economists don’t actually think that tax cuts are an effective way to stimulate demand, but tax cuts remain popular with most voters, who tend not to understand economics very well.

    The rest of the bill is mostly taken up with spending on infrastructure projects, health care, science funding, educational funding, as well as large grants to states so they can avoid cutting jobs in the public sector, like teachers, police officers, first responders, and so on. It’s really difficult to argue that the bill amounts to anything like a “handout” to the poor.

  4. Whether we live beyond our means or not (although I do agree with you on this, mlmoffitt, very much so on the national level – that is why they have one of these mounted in the heart of Manhattan), most seem to agree that the government should intervene. The question is how?

    If the Stimulus Package fails, it sounds like we’re pretty much in deep shit, as this would be the greatest test of Keynesian Economics ever…

  5. K, radical thought (and I’m not saying I think this is a good idea, just a thought), but maybe the government should back out. Stop helping people all together, let the US hit rock bottom depression and then see what kind of unity we can have to build it back up again. Maybe hitting the low of the lows is what people need to see to change their ways and learn how to manage their money. But once again, opinions are like assholes, everybody has one….no one really has the perfect answer of how to fix the f’d up economy we have now.

  6. Anybody been down south lately? I heard you can see the effects of this crisis much more down there. My friend said it was actually pretty depressing. Perhaps it is easy for us to talk as if this is happening the “american people” rather than the alaskan people. And perhaps the US does need to hit rock bottom, we are so concerned with meaningless issues like getting home early enough to watch the game or to cut grass that we forgot what it is like to worry about getting food into our mouths. I honestly think that conditions like depression and restless leg syndorme are fabrications by a culture that has too much time to worry about things. I dont think hunter-gatherers ever got restless leg syndrome…

    However, if we do hit “rock bottom,” it will be scary as shit! And we may not be able to rebuild. We are in deep water, to casually say maybe it would be good for the US to go down for a while is something that is not so casual.

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