Cal  Thomas

Have you read the proposed stimulus plan (www.readthestimulus.org)? Because government intends to spend your money (now borrowed from foreign governments, but paid for later with higher taxes), you had better read it. Don't let the length (334 pages) deter you. Especially notice comments by other readers who know they must foot the bill.

Here are just four of many examples: $1 billion for the ultimate in community organizing to create "employment opportunities for low-income and unemployed persons." When the money runs out, if it ever does, will those people have real jobs in a business or service industry, or will they have government jobs that require more money in the future? A board to oversee the spending would get $14 million and $800 million would go to AMTRAK, which has not been able to sustain itself, despite $29 billion in government subsidies. There are millions included for contraceptives and the abortion industry, which are unrelated to job creation.

In last Sunday's Washington Post there was a picture of Pennsylvania Avenue in 1885. The stores and hotels in the picture no longer exist. They weren't bailed out. They closed or became something else.

We are experiencing economic difficulties because we thought we could live outside our means -- as individuals and government -- forever. We falsely believed that home values would constantly escalate along with our stock portfolios. More than a stimulus, we need the lessons that wrong decisions and failure bring. Let the house of cards collapse and let's start over with those economic principles that have worked for every generation that has embraced them.

SunTrust Bank is running a TV commercial that speaks of "solid foundations" and "helping you get and stay on solid ground." It speaks of back to basics and no more keeping up with the Joneses. That's the right attitude, not subsidies that encourage risky financial behavior.

We used to take care of each other. Returning to that ethic would do more than revive the economy. It would revive us.


Cal Thomas

Cal Thomas is co-author (with Bob Beckel) of the book, "Common Ground: How to Stop the Partisan War That is Destroying America".
 
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