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Slow Wheels Of Government Need To Be Greased

By James Donahue

After eight horrific years of Bush the American public is now finding itself in desperate straits. People are out of work, losing their homes, hungry, and standing in line for government services that are not helping as they were designed.

Unemployment benefits don’t begin trickling in for weeks after it is applied for. Credit card companies are now gouging people who are resorting to this as their only way to buy food and gasoline as they frantically search for jobs that are not out there. Bankruptcy courts are clogged.

President Barack Obama came into office with plans to fix a lot of the damage caused by the Bush gang and has been strapped with this massive economic crisis to deal with first. He has extended unemployment benefits and food stamp relief for people who used up their limit of government assistance, and legislators moved quickly to approve Obama’s massive stimulus plan designed to create public works jobs and begin rebuilding the nation’s crumbling infrastructure.

While Mr. Obama and the Democrats on the Hill moved quickly, the wheels of government did not. Now, three months after that $787 billion economic stimulus package became reality, we learn that less than six percent of the money has been paid out, and this mostly in the form of social service payments to states.

Summer is here, contractors are crying for work, and workers are waiting for a crack at those promised government construction jobs while the sun shines. Everything is in stall.

In the meantime, people are losing their health insurance and paying the consequences. Nobody is going to the doctor now unless it is a dire emergency. Dentists have seen a drastic falling off of clients because people can’t afford to pay the high cost of dental work without insurance. The elderly are having to choose between the medicine they need to stay alive or food. And there is a big debate going on in Washington these days over Obama’s health care plan. Republicans and the big pharmaceutical companies are staging a big campaign against what they are calling socialized medicine.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says she believes the bill can be moved through Congress by July 31 before summer recess. That means it moves to the Senate for broad debate and tinkering in the fall. The hope is that the bill can be passed and signed by the end of the year. And when will it go into effect? January 2011? How many people will suffer and die for lack of medical care before then?

The automakers are going out of business because people can’t afford to buy new cars. Auto dealers are losing their franchises. This means hundreds of thousands of new layoffs about come down on us all.

In the meantime, the government is pouring billions and even counting at trillion dollar levels in loans to the banks and lending institutions in an effort to get money circulating again. But banks are not lending. Money is lying stagnant in their vaults.

Someone had better uncork this bottle pretty soon or we are all in for a lot more unnecessary pain and suffering.