Nation Missing Its ‘lockboxes’

by Staff

When I read in the paper that the United States will be deficitspending for the next three years, and that the budget will be aboutas balanced as Gary Coleman and Roseanne on a seesaw, I couldn’t stopthinking aboutSaturday Night Live.

Why SNL?

Because of a skit in which they mocked the presidential debates in2000. The two candidates were asked to sum up their campaigns in asingle word. Bush paraphrased his campaign with a word he most likelyborrowed from Don King’s Only in America HBO special — “Strategery.”Gore, who was rambling about putting the national surplus in a boxand hiding it in various places in the White House, used the word”lockbox.”

Now that the economy has entered a recession, we are waging anexpensive war against terrorism and are not able to balance thebudget, it would be nice to have that lockbox to help us with ourspending.

Where is our lockbox?

As we are all aware, Bush’s “strategery” has squandered this”lockbox” on a needless tax cut.

Although Bush could have never known what tragedies were in storefor his presidency, it was foolish to waste the national surplus andgive money back to people who have already made the sacrificesnecessary to give that money to the government.

Bush bought our votes by promising to give us our money back whenelected, and we were nearsighted enough to vote for a plan that wouldwaste a precious national resource. The economy was booming and thereseemed to be no reason for the government to save money.

Instead, we gave money back to people who have already made theeconomic adjustments to part with that money. If an American had tospend less or live in a smaller house to afford to pay all his taxes,then by the time he received his “refund,” he would have already doneso. By giving him a check he wasn’t expecting, the government turnedour national surplus into birthday money for the American consumer.

I hope you bought a TV or some shiny jewelry with your tax refund,because the money used to buy those items is now costing Americansjobs.

As the recession begins, the longer Congress waits to stimulatethe economy, the worse the job market will be. With those tax dollarsthat were given back to the people, we could have had money on handto combat recession, terrorism and deficit spending.

We’ve all heard a million times that valuable lessons are cruellybeing taught to us by the Sept. 11 attacks. Besides learning toappreciate the time we have with our loved ones and the freedoms andliberties we have in this country, we also need to value a powerfuleconomy.

We should know by now that we cannot predict our futures, and thedire need for national resources could arise on any given Tuesday. Weshould have kept our national surplus in a “lockbox” for a time ofneed, instead of counting on next year’s predicted fiscal figures.

When the economy gets back on its feet, and if we should ever belucky enough to have another election where the primary source ofdebate is what to do with all the extra money we have lying around, Ihope this nation will know what to do — put it in a lockbox, deck itout in camouflage and plant decoy lockboxes all over the country.

–Joe Zarro is an undeclared sophomore.

–This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of TheDaily Aztec. Send e-mail to letters will not be printed — include your full name,major and year in school.