Right now, with the current Stimulus Bill, known officially as American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, that is in debate in the US Senate, and if passed, in Conference to set to define a final bill to send up to President Barack Obama, I will explain what it really means for the US Taxpayer.
For every person in the United States, roughly, given the population estimates and division, every American will be in debt an extra roughly $2700 due to the Stimulus. This is on top of the $2400 that has already been added for TARP. According to the National Debt Clock each American already owes $35,097.16. Essentially all of this money is credit, and continues to increase when we fail to pay down on the principal–or increase the size of the principal, but can be brought down to essentially 0 minus even just a few years operating cost of the Government, even a surplus when Government is working in a profitable sense, which is probably hard to imagine but was done during Clinton. When President Bush took office the national debt was $5,727,776,738,304.64. Today it is $10,717,998,123,287.70. An increase of 46.5%.
Even in the best of economic times, it would be an ideal situation for the government and all of it’s agencies operated at cost.
In theory, this must be the objective, philosophically right or wrong, that comes with an idea such as The Stimulus Plan. To revive and protect the economy to such a state as we can reverse the tide of increasing national debt, refine the operations of the government so that it will not be operating at a deep loss each year, and for some people, expand the role of government to provide additional services.
President Obama very clearly articulated the goals of his vision for the growth of government in his recent Op-Ed piece, “The Action America Needs”, stating, “Now is the time to protect health insurance for the more than 8 million Americans at risk of losing their coverage and to computerize the health-care records of every American within five years, saving billions of dollars and countless lives in the process. Now is the time to save billions by making 2 million homes and 75 percent of federal buildings more energy-efficient, and to double our capacity to generate alternative sources of energy within three years. Now is the time to give our children every advantage they need to compete by upgrading 10,000 schools with state-of-the-art classrooms, libraries and labs; by training our teachers in math and science; and by bringing the dream of a college education within reach for millions of Americans. And now is the time to create the jobs that remake America for the 21st century by rebuilding aging roads, bridges and levees; designing a smart electrical grid; and connecting every corner of the country to the information superhighway.”
Are these too many goals for $800billion dollars? Could they not all be done individually, over time, or do we have to swallow them all at once? What about the other 13 yearly spending bills that work has not even begun on yet? Will there be another TARP?
I can see it, if only breifly, in flashes, the Vision that President Obama has–I like it, if it is above the level, if it is what it says it is, if it can accomplish all of those things, if we can swallow this pill economically, and somehow the second half of TARP succeeds where the first failed(and managed to misplace $78Billion). Can this be done?
The Audacity of Hope.
(*This article was originally published February 7, 2009 on the Yahoo Contributor Network)