The news this last week has been filled with Congress passing a “stimulus and disaster response bill” that has a price tag of $6.2 TRILLION dollars (admitted by Trump, although Congress claimed it to be “merely” $2.2 trillion). The entire national debt didn’t hit that astronomical level until the Bush II administration.
It seems that every dream of spending by both parties and every politician in Congress is being fulfilled. The national debt, already at 23.6 billion dollars may hit $30 trillion within THIS fiscal year (which ends in September) because it is already growing by more than a trillion dollars a year.
This is also the classic case for massive, even runaway, inflation: more and more money chasing fewer and fewer goods and services. Businesses are closed – more are closing, either because governments are ordering them to or because their suppliers are being shut down, or their customers are cowering in fear. (And out of work!)
Money isn’t the half of it. Panic reigns in the United States and elsewhere.
The spending of this vast sum is a boon for the socialists who believe that government can and SHOULD pay for and run more and more – even everything possible. Others have already pointed out that this is in essence a trial run of a Universal Basic Income (UBI) scheme. It also further reduces the independence and sovereignty of the individual States, as they call the shots on lockdowns and business closures, but are funded by the FedGov. Even though that funding is by printing money.
The implications for the future are horrific. THIS cost of panic is already being paid: the destruction of our economy, our society, and what is left of our system of government. Consider the following.
A Kentucky congressman reported that the Kentucky governor has established a toll-free phone number for people to report violators of the the lockdown in that state. No information on whether informers will be rewarded for their squealing to the state: perhaps they’ll get the scofflaw’s toilet paper? (I don’t know if this was Massie, who is now an enemy of the regime for trying to just at least do the deed (the spending bill) legally and constitutionally.)
There are already dozens of stoolie-lines run by various states. These encourage people to report poachers, unlicensed cars, trash in neighbor’s yards, and more. Are block wardens and MORE surveillance cameras just weeks away? We are already arresting people who are accused of refusing to maintain distance from others, coughing intentionally, and leaving businesses open.
Although a few religious groups are objecting to government “guidelines” and mandates to not hold religious services, it is staggering that most groups are submitting meekly to the demands, thereby nullifying the First Amendment. There are many groups that are meeting electronically, often with two-way communications, but that is a poor second choice. With this excuse for denying rights of assembly and religious expression, what “reasons” will be used next? In this era of political correctness, virtually any excuse might work.
More and more government bodies are meeting electronically, legally or not. While some are ensuring public access electronically, many do not seem to be. And more and more secret meetings and deals are getting done. At the same time as these governing bodies are either assuming more and more dictatorial powers – or surrendering their powers to a single person who will call the shots. There is a phrase for such actions: appointing a dictator.
And more and more harsh, totalitarian AND tyrannical actions are being implemented across the Fifty States, locality by locality, tribe by tribe, and state by state. Panic is driving this, and the costs are both immediate and long-term.
By Wednesday, 13 states with 140 million people had locked them down. By Friday – well, I lost track. I think it is 25 states and at least 260 million people. The rules vary from state to state and even city to city and county to county.
Completely forgetting the lessons learned from millennia of history, Cities and States are demanding military response: letting soldiers take control of areas and resources to further seal off areas, enforce curfews and lockdowns, and control supplies, manufacturing, and transportation – if not merely providing those services.
(Idiots like this that want military reserves – especially medical reserves – to be activated do not understand. Those doctors, nurses, and technicians are NOT stored in suspended animation in some government warehouse (next to the Ark of the Covenant): virtually all of them are also working civilian jobs IN THE HEALTH CARE SYSTEM. Which is where they can best serve now, beyond a doubt. It is a very similar situation in areas like transportation, where many Army (and other service) truck drivers are professional over-the-road drivers who are needed where they are at.)
Since new construction (except for building emergency hospitals and clinics, and digging graves) is “non-essential,” the situation with Army (and Seebee and USAF Prime Beef and Red Horse) Engineers is a bit better – but only if many troops, units AND equipment is brought home from overseas. (Not that I’m saying that is a bad idea.) But engineers can’t build something without the materials AND designs to do that. There ARE designs, long on the shelf, for constructing massive hospitals and care wards, but even so, the materials are NOT necessarily available within any reasonable time. And modifying other buildings (as one prominent Hollywood celebrity demanded of Trump=owned hotels) requires design and materials as well – and design takes time. Unless you WANT to have facilities more likely to increase contagion and deaths.
But worse is the idea that government enterprises are to replace private enterprises – even if those private enterprises are government contractors. For one thing, manpower is at a premium. Emergency legislation passed long ago gives the President authority to ‘nationalize’ resources: equipment, materials, AND people. All of the sudden, qualified construction workers (and drivers, and others) could find themselves drafted, issued some kind of uniform, and put to work as a private or airman basic under military orders. Further damaging the economy and society. Again, this is both a short-term AND long-term cost.