We continue to watch the Senate and House saga over the coronavirus rescue package unfold.
Senate Republicans put a 1,000-page bill on the table for consideration and twice it has flamed out and did not pass.
Not to be out done, House Democrats laid a 1,500-page bill on the table for consideration and they loaded it with goodies. These spiffs for special interests have nothing to do with stopping the spread of the virus. At least that is what Republicans say.
As a former resident of Washington, D.C. , while serving in the Air Force, I enjoyed attending performances at the Kennedy Center. Last I checked the Kennedy Center is not a testing site, staging area, hospital, nor does it play a role in solving the Coronavirus.
But you guessed it, tax dollars for the Kennedy Center are in the bill. I think it is responsible to say that isn’t helping protect Americans from the spread or flatten the curve. I guess we could space out the seating of guests. Maybe one per every six seats? Then theatregoers would be socially distanced. However, how do we keep up social distancing to enter the Kennedy Center? Maybe we give attendees a life jacket and they form a line in the Potomac River, which is alongside the Kennedy Center?
The bill also includes a bailout for the U.S. Postal Service, too. I love my letter carrier. She has always gotten my mail to me on time. Rain, winds, snow, sleet, hail, and even with dogs barking. Great people! As great as they are and dedicated to getting us our mail, we don’t have to have a bailout for the Postal Service to fight the virus.
When my neighbor flew home from his University after his courses were cancelled and the University shut down, he told me they had just two passengers on the airplane. He reported that the flight crew was fantastic and he had all the snacks he could handle and free soda. The airlines are a mess. Americans just aren’t flying and with flights canceled, their revenue losses have them on a course for bankruptcy. Pilots, flight attendants, ground crews, baggage handlers, fuel specialists, and all other support positions are out of work.
So what do the authors propose to help struggling airlines? A requirement to be more carbon neutral. I don’t know a soul who doesn’t want clean air, but this isn’t helping us fight the spread of the Coronavirus either. So, why is it in the bill?
How about those small businesswomen and businessmen who are also on the brink of closing up? The government tells everyone to stay home, shelter in place, and this wipes out our small businessowners. Making money, hiring women and men, paying all the federal and state labor costs is cheap. It is the cost of doing business. Employers pay the freight and we worker bees get the job done. However, the bill requires any business in the nation that accepts a loan, grant, or other federal government help to increase the hourly wage to $15. Californian’s and other large stares are already at or headed to the $15 number but the flyover states generally follow the federal minimum. The result would be cost increases and fewer jobs for all of us who want to work.
Near and dear to those who don’t want us to use fossil fuels to energize your home or office are new incentives for solar power and wind energy. It’s very cool to have a home off the electrical grid and sell back your excess power to the power companies but it isn’t finding a cure for the Coronavirus. Having friends in the industry I think incentives are in order but this isn’t the time of place for those in this bill.
Americans are told to go home and stay in that apartment, mobile home, condo, or home. They are following the government orders. They have lost jobs and income. Half of Americans have no savings. Business is shut down and unemployment is through the roof.
Is the House or Senate laid off? Nope! Are they putting a bill together that helps our workforce? Helps our business owners who create the jobs in our country? I guess that all depends on how you spell relief for the workers and business owners.
For once, the House and Senate members we have elected to represent us in Washington, D.C. need to put their big boy and girl pants on and help those who they have a duty to represent. Stop fooling around, step up, and let’s fight the Coronavirus. Fight your political and ideological battles on the floor later.
- Congress: Pixaby