If recession is all a matter of sentiment , individual and aggregated.Banks who used to be aggressive are too cautious now to lend, while individuals who used to spend are too cautious to even spend adequately for goods.
The following songs can really work wonders for specific sections of the economy-
1) Lets’ face the music and dance-
This one is for financial sector which is using the bailout money to pay bonuses , and shore up their balance sheet , while lobbying for a “bad bank’ to take care of all toxic assets. They need to start dancing again ( as my ex-Boss of all Bosses ,Mr Chuck Prince said) – and resume taking some moderate risks to start lending again.
2) My Way-
The Health Secretary and Pharma regulators need to sing “ My Way”.The healthcare sector needs to cut down on excessive insurance costs , and profiteering from their patents. Rather than limit salaries of bankers only, limiting the salaries of Big Pharmacy ,greater use of generics and broader coverage of people in America and even other parts like China ,and India would help the work force to cope.
This will ensure a healthy workplace ( which is quite stressed out)
If Venezuela can import 20,000 Cuban Doctors a year and export Oil, then why can’t the United States .
3) America the Beautiful-
This one is for the upper class and upper middle American consumers who have taken to a savings spree while resisting tax increases.
While spending on credit fueled items is still not recommended especially for middle class chaps , it would be good for some consumers to spend more and save appropriately. The creation of the estate tax, would help spread share the fertilizer of tax money to everyone in the economy. Anyone earning above a million dollars can choose between getting extra taxes or being forced for community service- shopping in malls compulsorily and then giving it away to charity.
We can start with the bonus claw back of bankers.
4) My funny Valentine-
This one is for the diplomats who need to swallow humble pie without swallowing crap, and start making more friends than enemies. Guess what – wars are expensive , and maybe some allies can chip in with the costs if you listen to them.
Inviting foreign leaders for talks, conferences without being rude and use charm and respectful and firm diplomacy can lower defense costs considerably.
1 fighter plane can create a lot of schools- and fund a lot of scholarships.
5)I ‘ve got you under my skin –
The immigration, education and tourism sectors need to rethink some of the Homeland Security‘s tactics without compromising on safety off course. Taking repeated fingerprints , and brisk frisking despite X rays is not the best way to welcome guests to your country . Millions of illegal immigrants would be happy to pay taxes and contribute positively – if they are brought in the legal migrant category. The sons of Irish and African immigrants also need to re think the policy of putting cap on technically qualified people for Asian immigrants mostly especially in education and software ( while balancing approach for any fraud and abuse in immigrant’s pay).
These are just humble suggestions and maybe Frank Sinatra isn’t relevant to today’s economy and policy making. I however would rather listen to “Send in the Clowns”.
These are the author’s personal views. You are welcome to suggest other songs for the current state.