An Outstanding “Stimulus” Ramifications Article

Among the editorial pages of Friday, March 27, 2020’s Wall Street Journal, you’ll find an outstanding piece, written by Kimberly Strassel, in her regular ‘Potomac Watch’ column, entitled “Big-Government Contagion.”  Outstanding because she sorts through (but doesn’t terrify you with) the almost 900-pages of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (the CARE Act), and, rather than dealing solely with the provisions (both the needed and the Democrat-stuffed puffery), Ms. Strassel points out some of the more distressing (for conservatives), longer-lasting, ramifications of this hurried-to-market Act.

Her chief concerns, in addition to the enormous amount of federal (i.e., tax-payer) dollars involved, on top of our already severely-strained national debt, are the amounts in the Act going to America’s national/state governments (much required,  no doubt, for the added administrative workforce needed), and the fact that there seems to be no actual or implied end-date to all of these massive financial hand-outs.

Among her comments, concerns, and conclusions, she writes: “A rough calculation suggests the single biggest recipient of tax-payer dollars in this legislation – far in excess of $600-billion – is government itself.  This legislation may prove to be the biggest one-day expansion of government power ever.”  Do realize, then, that the $600-billion figure would end up being somewhat less than 1/3 of the total published federal dollars to be distributed!

She also amplifies the billions of dollars ear-marked for what we recognize as “welfare” items.  Things like increased dollars for, among other things, food stamps, housing, childcare, and a category she identifies as “legal services for the poor.” Writes Ms. Strassel: “This is a massive expansion of the welfare state, seemingly with no regard to the actual length of the crisis.”

And while the Republicans were in a sense forced to accept Democrat progressive provision over-load, due to the urgency of getting needed business and individual American financial relief rolling, “the left has every intention of making these spending levels the new normal,” wrote Ms. Strassel.  For the fiscal well-being of our federal government (a.k.a. citizen tax-payers), her conclusion is beyond frightening, as we look to the hoped-for end to this virus and, for the sake of our future, a return to not the “new,” but the old normal!

There is much more to read and comprehend in Ms. Strassel’s excellent article than recounted here. Do try to find a copy of the March 27th WSJ, either the actual print version or on-line.  It’s well worth your time, as is everything she writes.

(Big-Government Contagion via Wall Street Journal, Kimberly Strassel, 3-27-20)