As we attempt a return to our traditional way of life – as it was before this pandemic was unleashed worldwide by a lying, despotic China — the divide in our country has become more abundantly clear. There is a group of people who believe that government is righteous and wise versus those who believe in the wisdom of the everyday American.
The evidence of this divide could not be clearer than with what has occurred with the attempt to expand funding for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). Despite the fact that an entirely new program was instituted to provide funding to potentially 30 million small businesses by 4,500 banking institutions through an agency that normally does 30,000 loans a year, $349 billion was distributed to a multitude of businesses that now must recall their employees or be held responsible for repaying the loans. This was all done in about a two-week period. All of this was to stem the tide and begin to reverse the effects of 26 million people who claimed unemployment benefits in the last month.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell drafted a two-page bill (to be an addendum to the original bill) for additional funding of $250 billion. This will certainly not meet the demand. By the time people who run their own businesses (sole proprietors) became eligible to apply for the funds, the original allocation had been committed. Meaning millions of businesses never even had a shot.
House Majority Speaker Nancy Pelosi immediately said no to the additional funds. She wanted funds going to governments — state and local. A more ignorant proposal has never been made. Governments get their funds from businesses and their employees paying taxes so that those governments can provide their services. Yet Pelosi wanted to skip the public and directly fund the governments. The local and state governments will use borrowed money from the federal government to fund their operations as if that money will create revenues to limit the burgeoning federal deficit. Her ignorance of basic economics is stupefying.
On the other hand, she made clear her priorities and that of her party’s. While tens of millions of Americans are scrambling to support their families, not one public employee (of which I am aware) has lost their job. Sure, maybe a stray person in a small town, but not in any significant numbers. While thousands of business executives and business owners have cut their own paychecks, not one Governor, member of Congress or Assembly member has cut their pay or gone without pay. Judges are still being paid. No 20% pay cuts here. Their protectors (the Media) still receive their substantial incomes while they question the sanity of citizens wanting to restart the businesses forced to close by heavy-handed authoritarians.
We will certainly hear arguments that these are “essential services.” We always do. Whenever the Democrats want more money, they always push the fire fighters or police or nurses out front. Over the years, this column has analyzed multiple departments of the federal government and all the agencies and departments in our largest state, California. We could terminate something like 25% of these governmental divisions and the only people who would miss them would be those employees, their families, and the special interests to which they cater.
We are now at the point where each state is making decisions as to how to get back to our prior lives. Some states and municipal authorities will move forward toward letting their residents back to experiencing their prior lives. Others will maintain draconian rules that will destroy the livelihoods and lives of their residents while everyone around them lives off federal largesse. Some states will maintain in place ridiculous rules about what kind of boat can be on a lake; others will allow people back on beaches with the understanding of some new social norms.
In my state of California, our Governor has laid out six criteria that will make it near impossible to return to working or experiencing life any time soon. Governor Newsom displays he has fully succumbed to the Katrina effect. Understand two things: Likely at least half of California counties have minor occurrences. No matter when things reopen, there will probably be a surge of cases. The question becomes are you only willing to reopen when every resident has been vaccinated? That could be over a year (if ever) and the California economy will be devastated.
And every state that opens up will be accused of heresy by the government control freaks and their allies in the press. This was evidenced by the attack on the Governor of South Dakota who happens to be a Republican. After a food plant was credited with a significant number of infections, the press unleashed attacks. The governor had not ordered a total shutdown thus she was irresponsible and guilty in their minds. When the Governor (whose state as of April 24th had eight deaths) pointed out the plant would have been open anyway as its production is deemed an essential service, none of her attackers offered an apology for their ignorant statements. They mindlessly attack, attack, attack and then slink into the hole from which they came.
Just stop and think about this: Do you think that any of the political leaders who insist on locking down their charges for an extended period of time beyond May 1st will ever look back and reflect that what they did was overkill? Do you think their only response will be an unprovable statement that if they didn’t shut things down crushing businesses and people’s income, tens of thousands more would have died?
The believers in government and their press allies will jump on any small aberration as a failure of the policies of Republican governors who have faith in their residents as opposed to the Democrats who believe they were elected to control the lives of others. These are the same people who attacked Trump (justifiably) when he said he had control over all reopening of the economy and then chastised him for doing the right thing and giving the final say to the governors.
The folks in the states where Governors are akin to the deplorable one running Michigan will see more and more civil dissent against their lawless orders. Then the perpetrators of these lawless orders and destroyers of personal liberties will declare themselves the victims.
People want their lives back. They want to be able to earn a living and take care of their families. They believe they can make logical, rational decisions to protect themselves and the people around them. If the elected leaders do not accept this, they will be exposed as the petty dilettantes that they are.