Wednesday, March 29, 2006

A Trilogy of Economic Problems

A trilogy of problems are at work in our nation's economy.
First, the uncertainty of stable energy prices will play out over the next few months. I feel gas prices will shoot up with ease to over $3. a gallon in the foreseeable future. This again will increase costs for consumers and businesses throughout our country. Where does this money come from? Many will just charge the difference and not worry about paying it back while others will cut back yet again from other areas of their personal budgets. Where is effective, reliable public transportation in our economy?
Second, the United States national debt is a grave issue that 435 members of Congress continue to ignore. Pork seems to be King in our land and an $8 trillion+ dollar national debt continues to be ignored by all. Why does the Federal Government need to spend $.22 cents of each dollar just on interest alone on the national debt? Why can't government live within its means like many Americans choose to do? If they do not curb this problem immediately, the long run economic implications will be severe and far reaching. Look out for a great erosion in our standard of living.
Third, the magnitude of General Motors economic problems are far reaching. And no I do not wish to see government bail them out. It is a fixed cost that every consumer pays when buying a GM car or truck that includes paying their workers who do not work. Their Jobs Bank program pays workers full salaries for not working. What other business allows this? And you may wonder why the cost of autos has gone up so high over the years? Examine this program and you will see the incredible sums of money GM must pay. Why? A bankruptcy will have a grave ripple effect in our economy. However, much of this is due to GM and its union for these incredible costs that are passed on to the consumers. And consumers are saying no to GM vehicles in droves.
What are the answers to this trilogy?
My advice to you the reader is to pay off your personal debt as fast as you can...

Monday, March 27, 2006

Energy Independence

Energy independence. What does that mean? Since 1973, we have heard many differing opinions regarding the ending of America's dependency upon foreign oil. The severity of our situation today should give our economy the impetus to start to use alternative sources of energy. These sources include solar power, hydroelectric power, wind power and improved gasoline efficiencies for automobiles. Here we are 33 years later and what has happened? Energy costs continue to skyrocket. Depending upon which excuse you hear at any time, the most simplest interruption will cause a .15 cent a gallon increase in the pump price. Energy prices in my opinion are flexible upward and very inflexible downward. The drain that energy prices have on our economy is incredible. We are the largest importer of oil draining nearly $550 million dollars a day out of our economy and into our foreign trade deficit. We are eroding our standard of living and our children's standard of living because we can't curb this incredible appetite for energy.
Let us start by using less energy. Can we save electrical usage in our homes and businesses? Can we each use one less gallon of gasoline a week? Can we have a mass transportation system that actually moves people from one place to another rather than a bureaucratic nightmare that it seems to do.
There are simple solutions, however it is too bad that we can't see them and accept them. Energy independence-33 years later?