by Rayna Gangi
Bailouts, rescue plans and panic attacks. No way to run a country. Some voters blamed the Bush Administration, others blamed the Democratic congress. No one takes personal responsibility, and no one has a true plan of attack. We, as Americans, are all responsible for the recession that’s heading for a depression. Wallets full of credit cards, gas-guzzling show-off vehicles, home mortgages too high for our incomes and get-rich-quick attitudes have landed us in a quagmire. And now we want lifelines. President Bush admitted in his first day in office that he knew nothing about the economy. Most public servants, CEOs, and politicians don’t know economics and rely, instead, on trusted advisers. Most Americans don’t understand economics either. We rely on financial news networks, newspapers, and word-of-mouth advice. The Bush administration was advised that a bailout plan was necessary and needed immediately or the economy would -tank.- He trusted congressional heat to sign an 850 billion dollar plan that never had any checks and balances and was filled with -pork- to get it passed. The Treasury Secretary and Chairman of the banking committee would handle the details. In response, money was channeled into banks and Wall Street criminals, except taxpayer money didn’t fund the banks to ease credit or allow for guidelines. American money bought shares in these institutions giving us, as investors, no say in what the companies do or don’t do to alleviate this crisis. So banks aren’t loaning, insurance companies are on the Riviera, Wall Street is still in a free fall, and CEOs are still getting rich. Fannie and Freddie? These CEOs took millions and then left to help win a Presidential campaign. Even Mr. Bush tried to warn about the disaster of not regulating these two entities, but a Democratic congress wasn’t interested. So now what? More rescue plans? More planned welfare? There are 330 million people in the United States legally. If ever person got a check for one million dollars, the total cost would be 330 million. Each valid social security number over the age of twenty-one would be allowed to do what they wanted with the million. They could save it in banks, thereby replacing bank funds. They could invest in annuities for retirement and insurance for protection, thereby funding the insurance companies. They could buy the car, computer, ipod, and vacations, thereby increasing consumer spending. They could invest in companies that hire only legal Americans and don’t outsource to other countries. They could feel empowered enough to stop pork barrel spending and may even feel powerful enough to remove those in Congress and the Senate who have forgotten who they work for and why. They could get back to truly owning America and being responsible for everything that happens to their country, becoming small and large business owners with a stake in their company’s future. Three hundred million compared to one trillion and rising. Sounds like a plan.