By The Numbers: The Package Deal Explained
By: Marcus Perriello | Our Voice Contributor
We face a dire situation in the United States on a scale not seen since The Great Depression. Climate Change threatens to reduce humanity to a footnote in celestial history. Arrogant, ignorant, despotic Far-Right leaders threaten each other with war of various sorts. The U.S. Dollar is being targeted for termination by countries who seek to quell the effects of Global Capitalism as perpetuated on the world by the corporate powers in the United States. Meanwhile, the United States is digging its heals deeper and deeper as the resistance to the old ways continues to grow in support across both the nation and the world; economic elites refusing to transition into the wave of the future that is Green Energy. Social disparity continues to become more pronounced as police violence against minorities is becoming more and more blatant and brazen, and the Trump Administration continues to feed their personally-manufactured “crisis” at the southern border on account of Trump’s deep-seeded racism and that of his radicalized base. In short, The Empire is in decline.
But now that issues like Climate Change, Social Justice, a Living Wage, and the Right to a Job have taken center stage for the first time since the time of FDR, people are starting to have the important discussions that should have been taking place from the beginning, and not a moment too soon! Scientists estimate we have 11 years left until we reach the point of no return on Climate Change, at which point, not only will the planet become more harsh and uninhabitable, but the very means by which we perpetuate our system of Capitalism are destroyed, rendering it unable to function in a post-apocalyptic world. So now we have on the table The Green New Deal; a measure that is estimated to cost up to $60 Trillion over 10 years. Recently, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) proposed an outline of a combination plan of the Green New Deal and Medicare For All that would cost upwards of $93 Trillion over 10 years. Contrary to what the Corporate Media and Right-Wing talking heads have been spewing about this, it is just an outline and needs some serious number-crunching in order to figure out how this can work.
Enter, The Package Deal!
The Package Deal is a combination proposal that encompasses a wide range of Progressive legislative measures and an ambitious rollout strategy. This not only makes AOC’s original outline possible, but includes Progressive social and economic legislative measures and a Progressive tax system that brings the total cost down from $93 Trillion to anywhere between a net national cost of $5.45 Trillion and a net total saving of $6.55 Trillion, depending on how well the process variables are managed.
The first thing to understand is that the $93 Trillion number that The Establishment likes to hit people with is presented under false pretenses. They displaying this figure as simply new money printed by The U.S. Mint, on orders from The Fed, which would add to the national debt and devalue the dollar even further. The truth of the matter is that this $93 Trillion figure is a final result of recycled money from other existing sources, making it an artificial sum created by the various aspects of American society inevitably interacting with each other. This interaction creates the illusion of more money existing where it’s really just being funneled from one location to another.
The second point is that in the long-term, using the concept of Modern Monetary Theory (MMT), we can implement a new monetary system that does not behave in the traditional ways it does now, hence The Hydrodollar system. But first, here are the areas that The Package Deal covers and their respective economic consequences over a 10-year period.
NOTE: “+” = Savings & Revenue, “-” = Expenses:
Medicare For All: -$32.6 Trillion
Elimination of Private Health Insurance: Between +$37 Trillion and +$49 Trillion
Ending the Wars: +$10 Trillion
Green New Deal: -60 Trillion
Public Banking Infrastructure: +$30 Trillion
Economic Bill of Rights: Legislative Measure (Constitutional Amendment)
Legalization of Marijuana: +$150 Billion & Legislative Measure
Abolition of Private Prisons: N/A, Legislative Measure
Nationwide Rent Control: Subjective, Legislative Measure
Ending Corporate Welfare: +$5 Trillion
Scrapping all Welfare Programs: +$10 Trillion
Universal Basic Income of $2,000/month: -$5 Trillion
As we can see, over 10 years, the transfer of existing funds from Corporate Welfare, in addition to state/federal welfare programs, and in combination with the implementation of a UBI program, results in a net saving of $10 Trillion. Ending the Wars knocks an additional $10 Trillion off the total cost of the deal, which brings the net savings to $20 Trillion, knocking the total cost down to $73 Trillion. Public Banking Infrastructure aimed at both combating private banks’ predatory practices, as well as closing the offshore tax haven loopholes, bringing the $23 Trillion back from overseas to our own borders brings the total savings up to $43 Trillion, reducing the total cost to $50 Trillion. Eliminating Private Health Insurance knocks off between $37 and $49 Trillion (we’ll use the $37 Trillion, first.) This brings to total savings up to $87 Trillion out of a projected $93-Trillion net cost, which results in a net cost of only $6 Trillion over 10 years. Now let’s use the $49 Trillion estimate – the original number of savings from a Medicare For All system. $49 Trillion on top of the existing $50 Trillion in savings results in $99 Trillion in savings compared to the projected $93 Trillion in total cost, which gives us a net saving of $6 Trillion over 10 years as opposed to a total cost.
So the pendulum could swing either way, depending on how well we manage the unforeseeable variables that emerge down the road. All this is without even taking into account the savings and revenue from the Progressive Tax system. This tax system is subjective due to the fluctuation in individual and household income with a $15/hr minimum wage implementation and the incentivizing and emergence of stronger unions and worker cooperatives. So this $12-Trillion differential is really just a baseline estimate.
One of the variables to consider is the effect the legalization of marijuana will have on Big Pharma’s control within the Healthcare industry. When marijuana is legally available across the board, it forces pharma companies to compete, which lowers their prescription drug prices, along with reducing the impact of opioids in America’s rural communities. Over time, this could lead to lower costs within the Medicare For All system, bringing us closer to the higher savings estimate of $49 Trillion. Another is the cleansing of our water, air and soil as we crack down on Big Agriculture’s use of toxic chemicals that are causing numerous types of cancer across the board, and because marijuana has been proven to treat various types of cancers and other ailments, this would also contribute to bringing the total savings closer to that $49-Trillion threshold.
At the end of the day, The Package Deal proves beyond any doubt that this Progressive agenda is not only doable, but can indeed be profitable for the mass of people if it is managed properly. And with the eventual institution of the Hydrodollar system, we would be entering an era of prosperity in this country, and eventually the world, the likes of which we have never seen before. But the clock is ticking, and the time for inaction is over. As we tackle corruption in our government and work to overhaul the entire system, it is all the more important that we convey the effectiveness of this ambitious proposal and prove to everyone that this is the way forward.