It didn't work for Japan, so why will it work for us?

Another "stimulus" bill is about to be passed, and once again I find myself wondering why they don't just give every tax payer in America a 4-6 thousand dollar bonus on their tax returns this year. That would likely do more to help the little people then a law laced with things like a government healthcare plan that lays the foundation for government controlled "Universal healthcare" that will instruct your doctor as to weather or not you're worth charging your insurance company for a much needed procedure. Not to mention it would give the money to the people who's children are going to have to eventually pay it back one way or another.

Is this stimulous package really even needed? Obama says we are as bad off as it was in during the Great Depression, yet today we have less then a third the unemployment rate as was seen during the 1930s. Though that's still close to as many people (a difference of about 2 million people), it's still only up a few percentage points over what it was a year ago, and still much less then it was in the 1980's. Certainly it's hard for those who have lost their jobs, but its a far cry from the days of the Great Depression; but that information doesn't seem to have reach President Obama's ears as is evident with all his negativity towards the economy.

The vast majority of us are still working hard, doing our jobs, and still wishing the government would, stay out of our lives and let us keep more of our hard earned money to pay for the rising costs of energy, education, and overall general costs of living. This recession we are in, is actually helpful to those of us who are now in a good position to go buy that heavily discounted new car, or to enjoy the bargain shopping we saw at Christmas time.

Will this so called "stimulus" package really help? The New York Times recently published a piece called "Japan’s Big-Works Stimulus Is Lesson" by Martin Fackler who states:
"In total, Japan spent $6.3 trillion on construction-related public investment between 1991 and September of last year, according to the Cabinet Office. The spending peaked in 1995 and remained high until the early 2000s, when it was cut amid growing concerns about ballooning budget deficits. More recently, the governing Liberal Democratic Party has increased spending again to revive the economy and the party’s own flagging popularity.
In the end, say economists, it was not public works but an expensive cleanup of the debt-ridden banking system, combined with growing exports to China and the United States, that brought a close to Japan’s Lost Decade. This has led many to conclude that spending did little more than sink Japan deeply into debt, leaving an enormous tax burden for future generations."
I agree... Spending money on government social programs will not fix the economic situation we are in, and may actually make it worse via huge government debts and potential inflation if all that money the Federal Reserver is "printing" eventually gets pumped out into the economy.

What will help? How about re-instating may of the Banking regulations un-done under the watch of the Clinton and Bush administrations, and cleaning up the financial mess that de-regulation caused (for which we've already passed a huge spending bill to do - and yet they still haven't used it to do what they originally said they would use it for).

If you gave someone a lot of money to do something you felt would help you, and they went and spent it on something else, would you give them more money just a few months later when they came asking for it? And yet, we the people voted to keep the Democrats in control of Congress (that's right, they have been in control of congress for the last 2 years). Go figure...


- Posted by Seth Hollist

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