This article contains commentary which reflects the author's opinion
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United Nation Investment Toward Year 2020
As a nation, we stand more divided that we have been in nearly 160 years. Racial divides, stoked by the media industrial complex, have destroyed cities and families across this nation. We have a disputed election where genuine evidence of fraud is looked at as “conspiracy.” And we have a congress that would rather fight among themselves than help the people whom they are elected to serve.
In this lame duck session, we stand at a crossroads. Will our representatives continue the infighting that has returned Washington D.C. to the swamp from whence it came, or will they work together and actually represent the people who voted for them? If the bipartisan plan for stimulus is any example, they would rather bow to their lobbyist masters than actually help people.
The $908 billion dollar plan put forth by lukewarm Republicans and blue dog Democrats is simple pandering to their lobbyists while giving the people just enough crumbs of their own money that they feel will keep the people from revolting. It is lacking across many of the issues that face Americans across the country today. The United Nation Investment Towards Year 2021 (UNITY2021) seeks to help the people, not the politicians whom are negatively effected by this.
Rent and Mortgage Problems
Keeping people in their homes is a tricky prospect. On one hand, we do not want people thrown out of their homes the day after Christmas. On the other hand, we have apartment complexes and individual landlords who are having trouble paying their mortgages on the properties and paying their workers. If we simply extend the moratorium, we are just kicking the problem down the road. There is a better way.
The United States currently has a mechanism for giving out large scale loans to people. We do it every day with student loans. Why not turn this mechanism towards helping keep people in their homes? Individuals would be able to take loan of up to $20,000 with a signed letter for their landlord for amounts past due (starting in May 2020) through May 2021.
Payments would be no more than 5% of a person’s income (including unemployment), paid for a period of 10 years. During those 10 years, these individuals would not receive any income tax return until the debt is paid off (once the debt is paid off, the payments stop). This would allow people to stay in their homes and allow those who rent the homes to maintain their solvency.
Stimulus checks are a novel item. They worked last year and stand a good chance of working two to three more times. The recommendation for this would be one check every four months until the pandemic recedes with $2,500 given per head of household. These checks can be sent out much faster as calculations on children and other issues do not need to be done. As it is a stimulus check, not an aid check, it should be based on the fact that people paid taxes, not based on how many children they have but on how much they make. This check would follow the same rubric as the original check, only paying people who make under $100,000.
For the last eight months, millions of people have been out of work through no fault of their own. These people have had to resort to putting money on their credit cards, taking out loans, and even borrowing from others to keep a roof over their heads and food on their table. Even if 2021 is better and people get back to work, their debts will still be out there crushing the middle class. The solution to this is two part.
Restore the $600 per week supplement back to August first. This will put an influx of money into the hands of people who are out of work and put nearly half of a trillion dollars into the United States economy. Once again, the PUA and EUI programs are in place, so this could be done quite quickly.
Pay a one time payment of $2000 to every person who returned to work during the pandemic (June through December). This payment would allow those people who were on the front lines to have an increase of income and would not punish them for “just being on the public dole”. This payment would be raised to $3,000 for nurses, doctors, medical professionals, grocery store workers, wait staff, restaurant workers, and residential contractors. Also, no one making over $100,000 would receive this money either.
Set up another set of PPP loans for businesses and forgive the loans, as promised for the businesses the followed the original CARES act rules.
How to Pay for It
The Unity Plan is not fully funded. I cannot do that as I do not have access to the United States’ books. However, one thing that we can do is cancel all debt held by China and Chinese investors. This will about cover the stimulus checks and unemployment. The remainder of the plan is to set up loans and these could be covered by the normal means. As they are paid back, the interest should cover most of the debt.
Further, we would add a 1% sales tax to all digital transactions (wire transfers, credit/debit card payments, digital (and traditional) checks. This would be collected by the company doing the transaction (mostly banks, who would receive 0.1% of the money collected). This tax would be instituted as long as necessary, with the understanding that the income tax (in each bracket) will be reduced by 1% each year that the emergency sales tax is in place.
If you like this plan, send it to your Congressmen and Senators. Yes, a few lazy people will get money, but millions of Americans will get to keep their homes. No bill will be perfect but we need to get something passed by the end of the week or we will be seeing mass evictions, the likes of which the world has never seen. Do your part! Tell Congress that we want this bill: a bill that will help the people and not some fancy worded act to line the pockets of lobbyists and politicians.