- The Washington Times - Tuesday, February 10, 2009

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

Many major American corporations have laid off thousands of workers in recent months. This is indeed an economic crisis.

In broad terms, the “stimulus bill” funds improvements to public buildings and infrastructure; energy management and research and development programs; rural broadband Internet access; social, arts, education and training programs; personal income tax reductions and rebates; increased and extended health, unemployment and food-stamp benefits; and government jobs at the federal, state and local levels.

If you work in the private sector and recently lost your job, ask yourself this question: Which provisions of this bill would cause your company to rehire you and when? If you have a job but fear you may lose it, which provisions would make your company suddenly abandon plans for layoffs? The answers are clear. This legislation will have very little effect on private-sector job loss in the short term. Even government contractors know it will be months, if not years, before this bill produces new business for them.

Instead, Congress should significantly and permanently reduce the U.S. corporate tax rate, which is the second highest in the world. This would immediately improve the financial health of every company in America. It undoubtedly would cause private-sector employers to defer layoffs and start rehiring.

In the longer term, American companies also would become more competitive and thus more successful in the international market. This not only would improve our international trade balance, but it would increase federal tax revenues and offset the reduction in the corporate tax rate.

Federal spending is an ineffective strategy for stimulating the economy. Instead, Congress should give American businesses and their employees greater ability to compete in the global market.

GEORGE KORTE

Fairfax Station

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