The unprecedented governmental Stimulus rebates being issued this month have brought about insurmountable media coverage intended to boost the spirits of many Americans who are very much anxiously awaiting this governmental gift. Media coverage includes news about anxious retailers, awaiting like vultures with dynamic 10% discount deals in anticipation of a Stimulus-induced financial feeding frenzy. Coverage also includes on-the-street surveys of random citizens who relate how they plan to spend this wonderful financial gift. Although 47% say they are going to pay bills with their share, another 37% say they plan to save it, the retail bait of discount incentives may change all that in the end.
What the media is not reporting are the dynamics of this financial distribution as it truly relates to hundreds of thousands of Americans already in debt up to their ears, struggling from payday to payday just to afford a tank of gas and a few groceries. Any of them can tell you $300 per person is not going to stretch very far. While media reports continuously refer the public to the IRS website for more information, it seems only fair (particularly for those without readily available internet access) they should also be including the distribution dates along with their stories, particularly in that a sizeable number of people will not be seeing their rebates until as late as June and July. Another aspect not being broadcast to the masses is the imbalance of offset criteria, which is a very evasive point on the IRS website as well. If a taxpayer's refund for 2007 was offset by a creditor, chances are the stimulus package will also be offset, and the taxpayer sees nothing but a letter explaining this whenever their distribution date arises.
It is understandable, particularly in a Presidential election year, the Government wishes to aid the failing economy as well as boost the morale of its citizens. Certainly the idea of a Stimulus package inspires hope to the average American, perhaps bringing a little bureaucratic forgiveness in the process for mucking things up so badly. But why is the media simply echoing the government's opinion of how good this financial motivation is going to be for the general economy, while eagerly aiding their advertising clients in preparing for what will hopefully be a major bout of retail gluttony, yet not reporting the more realistic side in terms of how it is actually going to affect individual people? The ways and means of the Stimulus opportunity promotion, both directly from the Government and from the Media as well, certainly feels like a sadistic opportunity to offer hope, then unexpectedly find it taken away for any number of reasons because of not being fully informed of the Truth regarding how it's really going to work.
Just about anyone in America will agree this is a wonderful and quite unique opportunity, having a gift like this from the government, and certainly a little “extra” money is never a bad thing. Perhaps it will make a difference after all is cashed and spent, just as how the Government and the Media are presenting it now. Yet not only is there something amiss about that Government/Media Truth-thing, in the comments made from the random taxpayers, who relay intentions of paying bills and adding to their savings, not one has said they will use their money to help someone else.
29 April 2008
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