[url=http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/20080124_the_stimulus_swindle/?ln]The Stimulus Swindle
by David Sarota
Stimulus”—you’ve probably heard this nebulous, scientific-sounding word this week. Every politician suddenly wants economic “stimulus,” and wants you to think this “stimulus” is unequivocally good.
But here’s the question: Why are we talking about “stimulus” only now? After all, most people have been hurting for quite a while. Paychecks have been stagnating, foreclosures have become commonplace, health care premiums continue their double-digit increases—and up until recently, conservatives greeted such hardships with saccharine fantasy.
Following government reports showing a surge in income inequality, Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson last year gushed that the economy is “as strong as I have seen it in any time.” In the summer, as the housing crisis exploded, President Bush said the economy was “thriving.” This month, as the Labor Department reported another drop in wages, Republican Rep. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota said not to worry, her state is doing just great because “we have more people that are working longer hours, we have people that are working two jobs.” And with word that there are now 195,000 homeless veterans nationwide, Bill O’Reilly insisted on Fox News that really, “there’s not many [homeless veterans] out there.”
Message: Nothing to see here. The economy is fabulous. Move along.
Lately, though, the rhetoric has switched. Paulson now says there is an “urgent need” for action, and President Bush is demanding a “stimulus” package from Congress.
And that gets us back to the critical question: Why the sudden shift? Because the group demanding help has changed.
"Behind every great fortune lies a great crime."
Honore de Balzac
"Democrats work to help people who need help.
That other party, they work for people who don't need help.
That's all there is to it."
~Harry S. Truman