I want to thank the hardworking and hospitable people of Elkhart, Indiana for opening their city to us, but even more, giving us their trust to come and let them tell their story: A story of people in so many American communities who face tough times from economic situations they didn't control.
Why does Elkhart matter? Because it could be your hometown.
These folks don't believe that Uncle Sugar — aka the federal government — is going to save them, but believe that they have the capacity to get through this downturn, just as they have others in the past.
Towns going through tough times will have to discover new efficiencies, create new paths of success and be innovative to take their strengths and make them the foundation for their future.
I'm confident Elkhart will do it and hopefully your town will too. But more than needing a bailout from the government, towns like Elkhart need some breathing room from the government. The government takes a large chunk of needed cash out of the community in federal payroll taxes every week. Congress takes that money, sits on it a while and then decides how to spend it.
Remember that "reset button" Hillary Clinton gave to the Russian foreign minister that was supposed to say "reset" but actually was translated "overcharged" in Russian? We should take it back and ask President Obama to push that button and admit we've been "overcharged" and then get one that does say "reset"— let's give the president a "do-over."
Ask him to fire his incompetent and tax-evading treasury secretary. Ask him to repeal the ill-planned and poorly executed spending orgy bills and embarrassing corporate bonus bills for executives who did selfish and stupid things to ruin their companies.
Instead of printing more money and creating hyper-inflation do something simple: Suspend the payroll tax of every business and self-employed person in the country for three months. That's cash in the hands of the people who can best turn the economy around; the people who provide jobs and really stimulate the economy. Freeze the staffing and salaries of Congress and federal agencies to feel what American businesses are feeling.
I believe Elkhart will thrive again; but not because of the federal government, but in spite of it. Being here makes me want to get an RV and see more of the kind of America I see in Elkhart and a lot less of what I see in Washington.
That's my view, I would love to hear yours. E-mail your comments to: firstname.lastname@example.org