In Washington, “common sense” is an oxymoron. So, here’s some uncommon sense:
Our government should do the following things immediately to help recover our economy:
Drill here, drill now, and expedite this by any means available. This would put many thousands of people to work almost immediately, and in the near future it would eliminate our need to buy oil or gas from other countries, thereby keeping at least half a trillion dollars in our country that now goes overseas every year. This would put people to work not only directly in the oilfields, but in hundreds of related industries, such as pipeline, pump, well servicing, and many others.
Shut down or at least restrain the EPA. The EPA has issued arbitrary rules that are, even as I type this, shutting down many coal-fired power plants across the United States, sixteen that I know of in Texas alone. Even if this was justified, it will not hurt the environment in a significant way if we postpone such action a few years until the economy is stable enough to absorb this blow. Instead, this administration is putting people out of work and weakening our power grid for questionable idealogical reasons, and at the worst possible moment.
Obama has proposed doubling gas mileage standards by 2025. This should be put on indefinite hold at least until the economy is healthy again, and perhaps then we can take another look at it. Just like what the EPA is doing to coal plants, this requirement will do to auto manufacturers, jeopardizing thousands of jobs and driving costs up radically for the consumer. You may get 55 miles per gallon, but that doesn’t do you any good if you can’t afford that $120,000 car in the first place, and you are smooth out of luck if you have to drive to get to work. They don’t have subways in East Texas, President Obama. This will be just about as popular as the Chevy Volt…
Health care costs are in fact rising. ObamaCare is not going to help solve this. Abort ObamaCare, because it has already been predicted to cause costs to rise – therefore it is not doing what it was created to do. Regarding health care, protect medical professionals from malpractice lawsuits, with a reasonable cap on damages. This alone will help bring costs down.
Eliminate frivolous lawsuits. Yes, I know, the government is almost entirely lawyers, and so they don’t want to cut back their bread and butter; but do it anyway, so businesses can operate without fear of being shut down by fraudulent lawsuits or needing to defend against frivolous lawsuits.
Remove unnecessary government interference and regulation everywhere it exists. This is kind of a general thing, but government suffocates entrepreneurship with every rule it makes. In short, get the heck out of the way!
Do not, under any circumstances, raise taxes. I’d be OK with something like the Fair Tax and doing away with Income Tax – but do not raise the amount gathered, under any circumstances, until such time as the economy can handle it. Taxes do not help productivity or prosperity – period. Taxes are always parasitic in nature. When the government takes our money and redistributes it, it is a net loss in efficiency due to the overhead required to manage this; quite aside from the question of whether it is a good idea to do so.
Downsize government, and don’t be afraid to eliminate entire departments. Every single federal employee consumes the total tax income of around 10 or 12 tax payers, simply meeting the salary, benefit and overhead of each federal employee. Get those people into the private sector where they can be productive, i.e. be required to be worth their pay.
Privatize every government department or organization that can be operated in that way. The postal service would be a perfect example – if the service is needed, the people that use it can pay for it. Just like UPS or Fed-Ex. If the service cannot earn enough money to pay for its own operating costs, we don’t need it anyway. Another candidate would be the National Park Services – let the national parks be sustained by charging admission, not by tax dollars. That way, those that actually use them will pay for them – and be motivated to keep them clean.
I believe doing the things above would almost certainly bring our economy back to health in fairly short order.
There are a great many other things that would help as well, but this will do for a start. Of course, none of these things will be enacted while Obama is president and the Democrats are in control; purely because these commonsense things go against their ideology.