What if you had solutions to a multitude of problems? Would you share what you knew or would you hesitate because the facts were contrary to the status quo?
I think I’ve always been about getting things done and solving problems. I’ve never been hesitant to try new methods or learn something, and I’m just as willing today, perhaps even more so, than ever before to find solutions and act upon them. I think I inherited the act of getting things done as soon as possible from my mother, who never let anything linger or go unfinished. She was a do-it-and-do-it-now woman.
Over the past several years I’ve spent lots of time sharing meals with folks who have no housing or could be called the working poor. It has been a lot of hard work, but the payoff keeps me doing this again and again. Solutions are uppermost in my mind because I see how the problems touch the lives of so many people. These folks are flesh and blood, not some statistics.
When I encountered the knowledge of how the economy of our country works nearly three years ago, I knew I had to share that learning and the solutions that go with it. Why hide a way to solve problems? Why allow people to suffer?
Because the U.S. is a monetarily sovereign nation issuing its own currency, Congress can spend on whatever programs it deems necessary like security, military spending, veterans’ affairs, domestic programs, disaster relief, etc. Congress and the president decide on their priorities. They make the political choice where the money goes.
There is no fixed amount that can be spent. The federal budget is not like yours or mine where we have a certain amount of money to spend, and if we want to spend more, we need to borrow it, use our credit cards or take out a loan. The federal government is the issuer of the currency and creates the spending. Spending is not unlimited, though, because too much into the economy can cause inflation.
Yet, the point is all government spending is a political choice made by Congress and the president. So why is there always so much haggling in the House and the Senate about how much to spend or not spend? Who is Congress and the president trying to please?
I’ll tell you what I believe. Those in power do not go into the neighborhoods of this country and see real people, nor do they know how people are suffering. Do most of the decision makers know what it’s like to live paycheck to paycheck? Have they gone without a prescription because they couldn’t afford it? Have they filed bankruptcy because of the insurmountable medical debt they had?
I’ll give those in power the benefit of the doubt and say maybe they were real people with real problems at one time, but their position of power and money has changed and not for the better.
There are those in Congress and the administration who know how the economy works and that the federal taxes people pay do not fund federal spending, yet they are beholden to those who financed their campaigns and continue to tell them what to do. I believe the elected officials should be responsive to voters, not funders.
Here is a link to a podcast discussing money and inflation where Rep. John Yarmuth explains how federal spending should work: https://bit.ly/3tCweoF. Yarmuth is the House Budget Committee chairman.
So, Congress and the administration have the knowledge but choose to ignore it. Perhaps these lawmakers are bought and paid for by money interests and do their bidding and not what is beneficial to the public.
If you are concerned about solutions and want evidence of what led up to the financial crisis of 2008 and continues today, please take the time to watch “The Con,” a five-part docuseries available for purchase beginning Tuesday, Sept. 21, on Apple TV, Amazon and Xbox. Also available at no cost is the series “The New Untouchables: The Pecora Files” that grew from “The Con.”
Will we hold those in power accountable? Will we solve problems? Make a choice, please.
The opinions expressed above belong solely to the author and do not represent the views of the Boulder City Review. They have been edited solely for grammar, spelling and style, and have not been checked for accuracy of the viewpoints.
Rose Ann Miele is a journalist and was public information officer for Boulder City for nine years. She is the national outreach director for Real Progressives. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 702-339-9082.