Interesting day today. CNN ran a story that caught a number of people by surprise and sent links to people they knew. When we went to read the story, the part that caught their interest had actually been removed. The story noted that the stimulus package had been approved and was on its way to President Bush. What it also stated, by way of a quote from the Treasury Secretary, was that the funds represented an advance on next year’s tax returns.
This was entirely new information. Until that point everyone assumed that the word “rebate”, which had been used quite heavily, meant it was a rebate on 2007 taxes. It would add to the national debt and we’d end up paying for it over many years.
I called my Congressman’s office and the initial call back confirmed CNN’s original quote. This would indeed be nothing more than an advance on any funds due next year. In other words, if you get $1,200 as a couple and owe taxes next year, you’re also going to owe $1,200 more on top of it.
Why does this stink to the high heavens? First, it’s going to do very little to help the economy. Second, it reeks of election year politics. Give the public “extra” money to go spend/blow and then, after the election is over, pull the rug out from under everyone. Third, the only reason this would have been pulled from the story, it seems to me, would be pressure from above not to report this fact to the public. What’s up CNN?