Thursday, October 02, 2008

Thursday Thirteen

If I had $700 billion dollars to spend on the U.S. economy and I were in charge, here is what I would do with it:

1. Create a work program focusing on infrastructure. This would rebuild failing roads and bridges, shore up and extend water and sewer lines, etc.. This would put some people back to work and help the US stay strong.

2. Add rail lines where necessary under the same program to take vehicles off the road. Same result, some jobs created. Also would help with transportation needs, energy, and pollution reduction once completed.

3. Create a rebate program for homeowners and businesses who added alternative energy items to their buildings. For example, if a homeowner added solar panels to the roof, they could apply for a rebate or reimbursement. It would pertain to things like window replacement, adding insulation, etc. This would also put idle contractors back to work, creating jobs.

4. Put some money into alternative energy to support the above initiative. This would create a new job sector because of demand for solar panels, windmills, etc. This would reduce the dependence on oil and again, create jobs. And clean air.

5. Regulate the banks and a few other pertinent industries. Sorry dudes, but you have proven you're just greedy and unscrupulous - that is to say, human - and you can't be trusted to police yourself.

6. Do whatever is needed to shore up the electric grid, including cleaning up the plants, extending and repairing lines, etc. The utilities would have to become publicly owned and would operate as non-profit. They should do that anyway, you know?

7. Implement a health care system that would include not only coverage but construction. Building more hospitals and then staffing them would be a priority.

8. Rework the welfare system. For one thing, create a network of childcare facilities that operated on a sliding fee scale. This would give jobs to some of the mothers who can't work because they have children to work in these daycares, and the availability of daycare would allow some of the single moms the opportunity to find work.

9. Rework the way we care for our old people. Create a similar kind of care network as number 8 for the elderly so we can take better care of our vulnerable old folks. As part of this as well as number 8 and number 7, there would be lots of assistance for folks who want to go into personal care, nursing or medicine so the hospitals when built would be adequately staffed.

10. Lower the fees to higher educational facilities or offer more grants, whichever would work best. People need to learn stuff.

11. Restaff government programs like the National Park system, which since privatized has become only a shadow of itself. It can't keep up with the Blue Ridge Parkway, which badly needs some trimming, or anything else. This would also put some people back to work.

12. Take the tax exempt status away from churches, then offer financial assistance to the charitable programs that help those in need.

13. Stand back and see how this all worked and then adjust as needed.

I'm sorry that this doesn't sound like our present system. This would be my version of the New Deal, I suppose, which got us out of trouble the last time. It worked before.

Don't we need change? What we've been doing has worked so well, hasn't it? All this angst and agony and constant fear and tribulations. All of these people out of work and who are cold and hungry. Don't you think it's time to try something new? If we have to hand over this kind of money, why shouldn't everyone benefit, and not just a few?


Thursday Thirteen is played by lots of people; you can learn more about it here. My other Thursday Thirteens are here.

4 comments:

  1. Very thought provoking. Some of these systems are at work in places already, such as the Dept of Aging my hubby works for here in Allegheny Co. in Pittsburgh. They are constantly used as a model for other states, as is the child protective services in Pittsburgh. But, the problem lies with how states spend their money(Pittsburgh is a county system, adding another layer between the people and the state), and there is too much corruption. That is why we need a woman in the White House. We do so much better at these things!

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  2. This looks like a pretty good list! Michael Moore's got one out there too that sounds pretty good to me. I'm in Las Vegas airport waiting for my flight...will be in route when VP debate is on...rats.

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  3. Nice list and as someone already said, very thought provoking. I'm going to follow your lead in 2009 and start doing Thursday Thirteens. I just hope that I can come up with an idea every Thursday! =)

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  4. I agree we definitely need some change. Amazing how much money can be scrambled and found to throw at a problem when it involves a lot of men in suits with really nice offices...

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