Jesse Jackson’s recent guest appearance on CNN’s Lou Dobbs continues to make me laugh. Sometimes humor is the greatest way to tell a truth. Mr. Jackson repeatedly referred to the U.S. Government’s stimulus checks as “WalMart gift certificates” — I laughed when I heard him say that for the first time and I’m laughing as I type it. While I find his analogy amusing, I also find an incredible element of truth behind it.
$300 is not an extraordinary amount of money. As many American downtown’s struggle to keep attracting consumers, WalMart parking lots always seem to be full. Just how many people WILL spend their check at a local business, a small business, or attend a local arts event? Habits are often hard to break. Will a large percentage of Americans spend their check or at least a portion of their check at WalMart?
If the answer is yes, then for which country’s economy are we providing a stimulus?