I won’t say, “I told you so.” But many stock market analysts have predicted an “economic armageddon” for several years. And I write this amid a market melt-down that makes the U.S. federal deficit look like pennies. And the finger-pointers are everywhere.
Blame Bush? Nope, President Obama has done that too much to be effective.
Blame the Greeks? Sorry, the media has been hearing that one for too long as well.
Then blame Standard & Poors for knocking down our credit rating? Well, Congress sent up the flares on that one in light of its misfire on brokerage firms. But the General Accounting Office numbers offer plenty of evidence of America’s lack of creditworthiness.
That brings us to blaming terrorists – you know, those Tea Partiers. But wait, weren’t they the ones pushing Uncle Sam to start living within in means – without tax increases.
Who’s left to blame? Uncle Sam is running out of culpable others to charge with the crime. President Obama and much of Congress still don’t get it: No one can spend and “spin” their way out of debt.
So the fear-filled American people are speaking with their pocketbooks – closing them. Even before this week, the U.S. stock market had lost every penny of gain made since December 2008.
Answers await action
Until this week, I was planning on holding off sharing constructive solutions for you to read in September’s American Agriculturist. But here they are – short, simple, but pointed:
President Obama is big on executive orders. Let’s see him executive order an immediate freeze on executive branch hiring and spending – based on 2010 budget figures. Let's see him put the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and its 500-person workforce on ice. Let’s see him prohibit any expanded agency enforcement and staffing-up plans – especially by EPA and FDA . Let’s see him pull the plug on all federal land acquisitions – which, astoundingly, are still going on.
Congress, too, can help restore public confidence. The “Penny Plan”, developed by Florida Congressman Connie Mack is also simple. It has to be for the average congressional attention span. It would reduce spending by 1% every year for six years and cap spending at 18% of the gross domestic product in 2018. Over the next 10 years, it would reduce overall spending by $7.5 trillion. That’s one penny of every dollar.
The legislation is H.R. 1848. Check it out on the web at: http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=h112-1848. If you like it, encourage your congressional representatives to support it. Are we desperate enough now to make it happen?
America’s economic future depends on restoring public confidence. These measures would take gigantic steps in that direction. Actions still speak louder than words, so let’s see real action – and quickly.
Speaking of action, the market contrarian's advice suggests now is a great time to buy into the stock market.
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