|Stimulus package a real ‘oinker’|
By Jan Schultz, The Imperial Republican News Editor
The big topic in Washington these days is the so-called Economic Stimulus Bill that is supposed to jump start our economy with new jobs and start some spending.
After reading through some of what the bill contained, however, anyone who calls it a “stimulus” package is misspeaking. “Pork” package is more descriptive.
Hopefully, the senators are getting the word from their constituents about concerns on whether it really will stimulate the economy. Support for it has dropped in recent weeks as people learn more what it contains.
While some of the “special interest” spending looks like it will be removed, just look at what is included:
— $2.4 billion for projects to demonstrate how carbon greenhouse gas can be removed from the atmosphere.
—$2.25 billion for national parks. This has some special questions since the chief lobbyist for the National Parks Assoc., is the son of the House appropriations committee chair, Rep. David Obey (Wisc.).
— $1 billion for Amtrak, which hasn’t been profitable for years.
— $400 million for global warming research.
— $75 million to fund programs to help people quit smoking.
Let’s not forget the millions in there, too, for treating and preventing sexually transmitted diseases and for resodding the National Mall, damaged during the Inauguration. Thankfully, it looks like these two items are out now.
This stimulus package is now around the $900 billion mark, triple what was estimated after the election by Obama and his team. All the “pork” is a big part of that increase.
Those who formulated this bill and Obama, as well, say it will help create three million jobs. Figure out yourself how much it’s costing to create or save three million jobs with a $900 billion price tag.
All the pork is a sly way to get in a bunch of this spending without having to debate it! They must think, why not just stick it into this “stimulus” bill and get it passed as the President and other politicians express the urgency to get this economy moving?
Why not let these spending measures, some of which are listed above, be debated on their own merits, not as part of what is supposed to be a stimulus package?
Here’s one suggestion: Why not put something in there that cuts the payroll taxes you and I pay? That would put direct money in our pockets that probably would be spent.
If payroll taxes are cut, that means less your employer has to match, as well. That gives that business more to spend, too.
Sen. Ben Nelson, a Democrat, has been getting a lot of face time lately on some of the networks, expressing his concern for the pork included in this bill. He’s not supportive of what the bill contains, and won’t support it in its current form.
Nelson is also urging Senate leaders to include provisions in the package that guarantee that jobs created by it go to American citizens, not illegal immigrants.
He, along with Alabama Republican Sen. Jeff Sessions, believe the use of E-Verify, the government’s citizenship verification program, should be required for all businesses benefitting from the stimulus package.
E-Verify allows employers to quickly check a prospective employee’s information against the government’s immigration data bases.
If you’ve never written to your U.S. Senators before, it’s time to start. Tell Ben Nelson and Mike Johanns the pork needs to come out of the package and real stimulus in.