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Politics & Power

What's new on The American Borders Forum this week? Preview pane at the bottom of the page.

The Devil Is in the Details

President Obama has asked Congress and the American people to back a nearly one trillion dollar plan to spend tax money on getting us out of the current recession. While there may be some merit to the general idea, there are a few things that probably should be worked out before we get all happy and give a blank check to our government.

First of all, the check should not be blank. We need to make sure that we know exactly what that money is being spent on and exactly how it will stimulate the economy. If it is a tax break for a company, there needs to be a giant string attached that say the money can only be used for creating or supporting American jobs either directly or through contracted work with American companies employing Americans in America. If the money is used for business improvements they must be done using American labor and materials. Absolutely zero money should be allowed to be used for executive compensation or outsourced work or materials. If the money is being used to fund things like the National Endowment for the Arts, that money must be conditional on being used to employ or fund American artists or American workers. To be fair, artists need to work and eat too. We can spend on things that enrich our lives and support American business but the bottom line is that every dime should have some sort of strings attached.

We have gotten the royal shaft from the banking industry for our previously spent $350 billion. It was supposed to ease the credit crunch when in fact lenders have tightened their lending restrictions. Before the bailout a borrower with a good payment history could easily refinance their home with a credit score of 600-650. Now banks will not even consider debt consolidation refinancing without a minimum 720 credit score. How is that making it easier for people to borrow? The banks that in many cases have caused the credit scores to go down with outrageous interest rates and hidden balloon costs are now penalizing people for getting into debt and making it even harder for them to dig back out of it with the assets they own. You can have good equity in your home but if you missed a payment on your Visa bill forget the debt consolidation to get your bills under control because the banks have taken the money and run.

The problem is Congress and how they gave out our money. They gave the banks the money with no strings attached. Congress failed to include accountability and now we hear that CEOs were using the bailout money to make sure their executives got their bonuses. Guess what, we canít do squat about it either because Congress just gave it all away without making sure they actually used it to help improve the economy.

If we are going to be asked to pony up another trillion bucks to fix the economy we need guarantees that it will do just that. The money needs to get into the hands of the people who NEED it. No more corporate retreats on taxpayer money, no more bonuses on our dimes and no more golden parachutes for failed enterprises. Congress just needs to make those illegal. If you crash and burn the business damaging the lives of the people who depend on it, you need to go broke with it. We need to read all six hundred pages of this bailout plan and make sure that every loan has a condition, every grant a resulting gain and every tax break a tangible stimulating effect on the economy. To Hell with more tax breaks for the rich! They donít spend for the most part they save and we need the money in the economy not sitting in a vault somewhere. If it ainít being used to get us back on our feet then it shouldnít be coming out of our tax dollars.

While President Obama may want this on his desk by the middle of February, Congress has a greater responsibility to make sure itís not going to be money down a hole. If the President has to wait a couple weeks to make sure the legislators have actually read the plan and made sure itís not screwing the American people then he will just need to cool his heels and wait. I think heís a good guy and has the best intentions but this is too much money to be cutting corners on accountability just to meet a timeline. The devil is in the details and with a six hundred page plan there are a lot of details that need to be worked out before the plan moves forward.

The Realist - Patriot at Large | Give your feedback on this article. | Click icon to Digg this article



Get Involved

Do you sit and yell at the TV when politicians come on? Do you shake your head sadly whenever you see a homeless veteran? Is that all you tend to do?

It's time to put up or shut up America. We all love to talk about how we could do things better or how we would do it if we were in charge. Well, it's time to put your money where your mouth is. If you can think of it, you can write it down. If you can write it down, you can type it. If you can type it, you can e-mail it and if you can e-mail it, you can send it here.

We at Reform America are committed to giving voice to anyone who wants to put their ideas out there to make our nation a better place. As the readership grows, we are able to take those views to a wider and wider audience. Grassroots campaigns begin with voices speaking out. You have opinions. Voice them. We aren't about conservative or liberal. We aren't about pro-this or anti-that. We're about Americans and the First Amendment. Reform America is about politics by, for and of the people. You are the people. You only need to speak up. America is listening. Send your article to: stories@reform-america.net



Have You Been Downsized Due to Outsourcing?

For several years now we have listened to some within the business community tell us that America can't compete on a global scale unless they send our jobs overseas where they can be done cheaper. The question becomes, if we don't have good paying jobs here, how can we sustain our own economy? We want to hear from you. Have you lost your job? Have you been forced into a lower wage job due to outsourcing? Has outsourcing been a success for you? Did you end up in a better job?

Tell us your story so we can make sure the politicians see how outsourcing really impacts the workers who are backbone of America. Send your story to stories@reform-america.net





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