Rebates, Boo, Hiss

You know I love me some President Bush. Usually I can figure out where he's coming from even when I don't agree with him. However, I have to scratch my head at the sudden push for a solution to the perennial Palestinian crisis. I miss the Bush who refused to meet with Arafat, and took the view that he'd talk when the Palestinians got serious. And this "stimulus" package? Sigh.

To start, I don't believe we're headed for recession; we're just headed for a slower rate of growth. I think oil's at $100/ barrel and everything delivered by gasoline costs more, so people are feeling the pinch. Doing nothing (except lowering interest rates as the Fed did today) would be my option. But I suppose when the country is "hurting" the President doesn't want to be seen "doing nothing about it." I suppose every Republican Congressman hoping to keep his seat has been begging behind the scenes for a stimulus package.

Fine. But people, rebates don't stimulate anything; tax cuts do. (Didja notice the Dow fell 300 points the moment the stimulus package was announced?) A rebate is just wealth re-distribution, and comes to you as a windfall, like finding a $20 bill in the pocket of your old coat. What do you do with a windfall? You spend it. At Starbucks. And you're done. A tax cut is an incentive for savings and investment --it affects the future. If Bush feels he must do something, he should go around the country insisting the Dems make his tax cuts permanent this year --and if they won't, he should go around telling the country the Dems are refusing to do anything to help them.