Here are excerpts from an article in today’s Chicago Tribune.
Early divisions as Congress mulls more aid
Dems brainstorm ideas; GOP wants to assess situation
By Alan Fram, Associated Press
WASHINGTON — The bipartisan partnership that propelled a $2.2 trillion economic rescue package through Congress just days ago is already showing signs of strain, raising questions about how quickly calls for massive follow-up legislation may bear fruit.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and fellow Democrats are collecting ideas for the next stab at stabilizing an economy knocked into free fall by the coronavirus outbreak.
Their proposals include money for extended unemployment benefits, state and local governments, hospitals and a job-creating infrastructure program, plus expanded job protections and benefits for workers.
“It’s a wonderful opportunity,” Pelosi told reporters this week, “because I think our country is united in wanting to not only address the immediate needs of the emergency and mitigation for the assault on our lives and livelihood, but also how we recover in a very positive way.”
Congress’ top Republicans say not so fast. They want lawmakers to gauge how well the huge, newly minted bailout programs are working and how the economy is behaving.
Visualize the fire department is pouring water on the fire, but the fire still is getting worse and worse. The fire chief says, “No more water until we gauge and assess the situation.”
What is there to “gauge” and “assess”? Congress and the President already have wasted too much time with inaction. Their foot-dragging has doomed too many Americans to death.
But now they want to “gauge” and “assess.” What will they learn other than that $2 trillion worth of “water” was not enough to control the “fire”?
What is wrong with these people?
Here is what is wrong:
And they’re accusing Pelosi of planning to use the next bill to win Democratic priorities like environmental requirements and moving the country toward ballot by mail elections.
Oh, how awful: Help save the environment. In the GOP world, it is better to let both the environment and the economy be destroyed, than to allow any “Democratic priorities.”
“Let’s see how things are going and respond accordingly,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said Tuesday on Hugh Hewitt’s talk radio show.
He said that could take weeks and added, “I would think any kind of bill coming out of the House I would look at like (President Ronald) Reagan suggested we look at the Russians — trust, but verify.”
“I’m not sure we need a fourth package,” House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., said on Fox News’ “Sunday Morning Futures.”
“Hey, what’s the rush”? says Moscow Mitch and McCarthy, both of whom have well-paying jobs. “Let’s take our time and ponder this, while people are dying.”
But then, comes a voice of reason from a very unlikely source:
Throwing another wild card into the mix, President Donald Trump on Tuesday blindsided congressional Republicans and embraced using the next round for a massive infrastructure package.
Many in both parties have supported such a program before, but some Republicans have opposed it as too costly and there have long been crippling disagreements over how to pay for it.
“It should be VERY BIG & BOLD, Two Trillion Dollars, and be focused solely on jobs and rebuilding the once great infrastructure of our Country! Phase 4,” Trump tweeted.
Who would have expected Donald Trump, of all people, to make a sensible proposal?
McConnell and McCarthy are proven fools of no value to America. And so is Trump. But while “Mc and Mc” continue to play the fool, suddenly Trump speaks truth and wisdom.
I should mention, that at one time Trump also suggested getting rid of FICA, which was another excellent idea, that he didn’t pursue. Is this the “stopped clock” syndrome, where a stopped clock is right twice a day?
There seems little doubt that if the economy remains near its current morbid state, the major question facing lawmakers will be what the next bill should look like, not whether to have one.
Growing numbers of business close by the day, consumer spending is plummeting and millions are losing jobs as much of the country shelters at home, a devil’s brew that could be lethal for politicians to ignore before November’s presidential and congressional elections.
” . . . if the economy remains near its current morbid state . . . ” IF?? Does he mean IF the giant fire continues to burn, and IF people continue to die, the pols might have to do something about it?
Meanwhile, useless “Mc and Mc” fiddle, “gauge,” and “assess” while the whole world burns.
“I think there’s a deal to be had this time” on infrastructure, said Rep. Greg Walden of Oregon, top Republican on the House Energy and Commerce Committee.
Still, he said reaching agreement on another expensive package could be harder after last week’s $2.2 trillion bill.
“We’ve already broken apart our grandkids’ piggy bank, we’re now getting into the great-grandkids’ piggy banks, so let’s be thoughtful on this,” he said.
And there, once again, is the Big Lie that taxes pay for federal spending. How long, oh lord, how long will these politicians be allowed to use the Big Lie as an excuse for doing nothing, while they sit back and collect salaries?
He said while the economy will likely need another large cash infusion to recover, Democrats pushing more spending will clash with Republicans eager to use tax cuts instead, such as suspending employers’ payroll tax like Trump has proposed.
All are good: Cash infusion, tax cuts, suspending FICA. All are good. All pump money into the economy, and that is the key.
The economy’s single biggest problem today is lack of money; the only solution is to add money to the economy.
And the federal government is the one agency that has the unlimited power to add money.
Clearly the size, contents and timing of the next bill are in play. And the Trump administration, lawmakers, lobbying and ideological groups are all pushing ideas.
Trump has publicly suggested he’d support extra money for state and local governments and for some type of hazard pay for front-line medical workers.
Former Vice President Joe Biden, Trump’s likely Democratic presidential opponent, has said he wants additional direct payments to people beyond the one-time $1,200 amounts many adults will get.
He also wants increased Social Security benefits and some student loan forgiveness.
Pelosi’s proposals include easing limits on federal deductions for state and local taxes, a curb the GOP-controlled Congress enacted in 2017 that’s hit high-income, Democratic-leaning states the hardest.
Her suggestion has run into opposition from both parties.
All of the above are good ideas. All pour water on this out-of-control fire.
Just do it, do it, do it. Do them all. Do them now. The federal government can afford anything, but someone has to push the button.
Stop the political infighting and act like leaders.
We are dying out here.
Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
Search #monetarysovereignty Facebook: Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
THE SOLE PURPOSE OF GOVERNMENT IS TO IMPROVE AND PROTECT THE LIVES OF THE PEOPLE.
The most important problems in economics involve:
- Monetary Sovereignty describes money creation and destruction.
- Gap Psychology describes the common desire to distance oneself from those “below” in any socio-economic ranking, and to come nearer those “above.” The socio-economic distance is referred to as “The Gap.”
Wide Gaps negatively affect poverty, health and longevity, education, housing, law and crime, war, leadership, ownership, bigotry, supply and demand, taxation, GDP, international relations, scientific advancement, the environment, human motivation and well-being, and virtually every other issue in economics.
Implementation of Monetary Sovereignty and The Ten Steps To Prosperity can grow the economy and narrow the Gaps:
Ten Steps To Prosperity:
2. Federally funded Medicare — parts A, B & D, plus long-term care — for everyone
3. Provide a monthly economic bonus to every man, woman and child in America (similar to social security for all)
4. Free education (including post-grad) for everyone
5. Salary for attending school
6. Eliminate federal taxes on business
7. Increase the standard income tax deduction, annually.
8. Tax the very rich (the “.1%”) more, with higher progressive tax rates on all forms of income.
9. Federal ownership of all banks
10. Increase federal spending on the myriad initiatives that benefit America’s 99.9%
The Ten Steps will grow the economy and narrow the income/wealth/power Gap between the rich and the rest.
3 thoughts on “The Pols are in no rush. They have paying jobs, so why worry?”
The only problem with suspending FICA is, because the big lie is out there and in force, Trump and republicans will use it as a reason to cut and eliminate Social Security because they will lie and say it can’t be sustained without those taxes.
If we can’t do the right thing because the Republicans will lie about it, then there is only one solution.
If you thought Trump’s comments have been stupid in the past, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet:
And then this bit of ignorant irony:
Don’t assume doctors and nurses will keep showing up, said Dr. Thomas Kirsch in TheAtlantic.com.
As the number of cases soars, and more and more of us get sick, “I am afraid a tipping point could happen with little warning.” Facing an impossible caseload and insufficient beds, a dire shortage of PPE, and the high likelihood of infection, some doctors and nurses and poorly paid support staff may stop coming to work.
We have families. We are scared. “Our duty is not boundless.” To avoid a worst-case scenario, the government must do “dramatically more” to support those of us on the front lines — with more PPE, yes, but also with free places to stay so we don’t infect our families, and a guarantee of “preferential access to care and medications” if we ourselves get sick.
If society does not take care of the caretakers, at some point soon “the system could break, and we will all be gone.”