I am stunned at the mental migetry that has been on display in America and the world over this COVID-19 pandemic. There have been those longing for the ‘fundamental transformation’ of America shifting us for a Free Market Capitalist Constitutional Republic to a Socialist Central Government Controlled regime. At the risk of sounding a fatalist and as if I am throwing in the towel I admit, “They have succeeded.” Well, in a measure they have!
Have they destroyed America completely? Not with full finality but in many respects the bad advice and the impossible situation President Trump was placed in and continues to endure is destroying us. Would we be better off had Hillary Clinton been president or if Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, or Barack Obama been president? NO! Ten million times no! We are fighting for any glimmer of hope and they would have extinguished that flame at the outset.
I believe that President Trump genuinely wants to reopen the economy and reopen we must if we have any hope of survival. However, I am concerned that reopening will not produce the expected or desired results. The damage is far more severe and long-lasting that virtually anyone wants to admit. The insane Trillions in stimulus money will not solve our problem, those efforts will exacerbate it. Playing politics with our pocketbooks and emotions is diabolical and should be decried by everyone. But millions think with their emotions and vote with their pocketbooks. Welcome to America in 2020.
I have been deeply disturbed by the continuing inaccuracies of the medical models predicting the outcome of this pandemic. But I am also shaken to the core of my patriotic being over the incredible bad advice apparently being given to the president on the economy. Two wrongs never make a right and if you begin with the wrong premise you always end up with the wrong outcome.
When the edict came down that only ‘essential businesses’ would be allowed to remain open, red flags popped up in my head. The sad reality is that some of the suppliers for the ‘essential businesses’ were deemed ‘non-essential’ and thereby created a vacuum. The edict allowed ‘essentials’ to remain open but imposed upon them such strict and impossible ‘social distancing’ requirements, they were severely limited in their output and effectiveness. The result of that will be long-lasting.
I saw one report that said that almost 78% of all Americans live paycheck-to-paycheck, including the 10% who make more than $100,000 per year. Think of that in the context of this ‘shutdown’. Can you see how taking about 1/6th of a year from people economically will impact into the future? If we fully reopened today and everyone began to draw a paycheck this week, we would feel the constraints and pain that has been inflicted for the rest of the year and probably into next year and beyond. How long can we live on Ramen Noodles, rice, and beans?
We have seen limitations on our ability to buy as well as limitations on our ability to earn the money to buy. The reduced consumption will translate into economic issues in the Fall. Those businesses that are able to and willing to take the loans, reopen, and hire a full complement of workers will likely see the drop off in consumption result in layoffs in the Fall. Will that translate into votes for the Socialist? I hope not but, suggest it is highly likely because many seem to think with their emotions and vote with their pocketbooks.
People are hurting not just medically or with health concerns but financially. The moratoriums on evictions and repossessions have given a brief reprieve to many but it is not a fix. Homeowners, due to financial concerns are postponing repairs and maintenance on their homes. Landlords, facing the lack of income are ignoring the needed repairs. If there is another round of layoffs the loan defaults will escalate, the lack of maintenance on the property will diminish the value and while it will be a boom for the deep-pocketed investors it will be devastating to millions of Americans who live day-to-day.
The medical advisers are warning that we must remain locked down into the foreseeable future to save lives. They have insisted that we must flatten the curve, or we will see a 2nd or 3rd wave that is far worse than the 1st, and people are terrified. Fear is gripping the hearts of people who were once considered fearless and industrious. I listen to people that are afraid to be around anyone including family fearing COVID. They are suffering mentally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually. Where faith once reigned fear now torments. That is not true for everyone but listen to what people are saying and you will understand why I say that.
The economic experts that the Left who want to be the final deciders of the reopening of America include such illustrious economic, medical, and environmental giants as the 17-year old Swedish student, Greta Thunberg. Imagine America being advised by the likes of Ms. Thunberg, former acting CDC director Richard Besser, Kathleen Sebelius, Bill Gates, or George Soros.
Not only is a quick recovery unlikely another fly in the ointment is that according to some reports as many as two-thirds of Americans are making more on unemployment than they did working. That dangling carrot and inducement to remain locked down is a difficult enticement to remove. Once people taste ‘free money’ (nothing is free), coupled with paranoia and fear, incentive dissipates. Once people become accustomed to being rewarded for being docile sheep and obedience to government edicts, freedom is easily bought for a pittance.
The insane $2 Trillion CARES relief package included an additional $600 per week in unemployment insurance for those affected by COVID-19 job losses. That boosted the average payment from $370 per week to $970 per week. One report revealed that 68% of workers eligible for unemployment payments will receive benefits that exceed their lost wages. The median replacement rate is 134% meaning that 1 out of 5 unemployed workers will receive benefits twice what they were making. If that is not a selling point for socialism, what is?
Another economic problem that will affect our recovery is the small businesses that took the federal emergency loans will not have to hope they can entice their workers to return to work. Once people become accustomed to being paid for nothing it is difficult to inspire many to return to productivity. Everyone does not possess a deep work ethic that sees providing for themselves and their families reward enough to work. Some believe they are entitled and are owed. The latest package also includes a means for illegals to receive stimulus money! That is insane!
The argument, “We Have to Do Something” falls flat when the ‘something’ becomes the death knell in the coffin of the republic. If the cure becomes worse than the condition, the cure is not good. This has become and maybe was from the beginning a political football and the American people and America have become the pieces on the game board. That is insulting, infuriating, and deadly.
America, we have a choice. We will have to decide that now that ‘Something’ has been done and the far-reaching and long-term damage is another obstacle in our fight for Freedom and Liberty we will have to overcome. We must decide that we will not be distracted and allow our emotions to think for us nor our pocketbooks to cast our ballots, but we will do what is needed to restore America. That means, Defeating the Left in November!
God bless you and God bless America!
Thank you for your insight. I’m thinking that after Hillary lost the election, the socialists democrats, pulled out all the stops. They are going for the jugular of free market capitalism. How very close we are to loosing it all.
You are right Al.