WASHINGTON, May 6, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- In the wake of nearly $3 trillion in Coronavirus response spending by Congress, one thing is clear: relief measures have been woefully inadequate. Meanwhile the wealth of the billionaire class has surged amidst this pandemic. While Congress and the President congratulate themselves on the relief provided, not only is it inadequate, but much of the appropriated money has either gone to well-connected interests that did not need the money, or it has gone to large corporations with few strings attached. Most importantly, there is simply no excuse for the inadequacy of the relief spending, as concerns about the national debt are completely unfounded and misplaced. The following principles provide a framework against which to measure the inadequacy of Congress's actions:
- The debt is not a burden. The Fed can keep interest rates near zero and is doing so. The interest we do pay is hardly a burden to a currency-issuing government. We must not hold back on spending out of fear of accumulating too large a debt burden. As long as we keep inflation under control, further spending is perfectly responsible, and in fact called for.
- Payroll should be covered by the government for all businesses and non-profits whose revenue is strained by the shutdown. Funds should be extended to employers that have already laid off workers on the condition that they hire them back.
- People must not be forced from their homes. There is no excuse for allowing evictions during the crisis.
- Adequate unemployment benefits must be extended to all who have lost their jobs. Federal aid to the states should be forthcoming as necessary.
- A federal job guarantee must be established in order to re-employ all who want jobs but are unable to obtain them via the private sector.
- Medicare for All-style provision of Coronavirus healthcare must be established.
Our Money Founder, Rev. Dr. Delman Coates argues, "We've been told all this money that Congress is spending is a stimuLUS, but it's a stimuLIE. The money that is actually going to the people that need it is pales in comparison to what Congress could and should be doing. They're throwing us crumbs while well-connected corporations loot the Treasury. It's 2008 all over again."
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