New budget fix: Pawn Mount Rushmore?
Hey, the country has been talking about minting a massive platinum coin. Could selling a giant granite tourist trap be any more ludicrous?
According to a petition filed with the White House, the government should pawn the mountain to the Federal Reserve if the Treasury Department can't pay the interest on the federal debt.
"Now that #MintTheCoin is dead," reads the petition, referring to the movement to mint the trillion-dollar coin, "our best option is clearly to sell Mount Rushmore to the Fed, and buy it back later once our cash flow problem is solved."
How much is Mount Rushmore worth? The entire project, which began in 1927, took 14 years and cost just $1 million. The sculpture was a transparent play for tourism money, and it worked: About 3 million people visit each year.
All six of South Dakota's national parks, of which Rushmore is the largest, contributed $168 million in economic benefit in 2010, according to the National Park Service. In fact, Jay Leno joked last year that Mount Rushmore is the only thing to see in South Dakota. Here's the text of a fake narrated commercial that ran on the "Tonight Show," according to the Rapid City Journal:
"Spend a week in South Dakota. On Monday, see Mount Rushmore. On Tuesday, see Mount Rushmore again. On Wednesday, visit the gift shop at Mount Rushmore. And on Thursday, relive your first experience, at Mount Rushmore."Clearly, Mount Rushmore is priceless to South Dakota. And perhaps the federal government could get a pretty penny for selling it to the Federal Reserve.
The proposal is obviously going nowhere. Only seven signatures had been collected by the petition Monday night, and 25,000 are needed by Feb. 13.
But the idea has been embraced in social media, with the #PawnTheMountain hashtag gaining steam in some circles on Twitter. The idea may have come from Jordan Weissman, a business writer for The Atlantic who suggested it on Twitter as a way to avoid default. An associate editor at The Atlantic, Matthew O'Brien, wrote Monday that the Treasury could really sell anything valuable enough to the Fed with the agreement to buy it back later. O'Brien may have started the White House petition, in fact.
"This kind of repurchase (repo) agreement would give the Treasury cash flow if it's running so low that it can't pay the interest on our debt," O'Brien wrote.
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Mount Rushmore is not a "tourist trap." It is a part of our recognition of historic presidents who envisioned the continued building of a great nation. Washington and Lincoln pretty much shared the same ideology as did Teddy Roosevelt and Jefferson. They all made a commitment to expand the nation via exploration and the preservation of land. Look at their personal records and you will see just how important it was to place these four national figures on the side of a mountain in South Dakota. If you do a little research, you will understand what each of these men believed and worked to achieve.
Leave the monument alone. Sell the 545 gutless leaders who refuse to do what needs to be done!!
This won't go over so big with the Chinese, since they basically own most of our country these days. How about selling off Washington DC? Since they are not a part of the USA, and just think of the benefits of saving all that wasted money.
Normally I would say it is a chunk of rock, go ahead and pawn it. But there are indigenous species in that park that could be endangered if we have no control over the area. I don't see why we don't just print up enough money to pay off our debts.
I don't think the current tax plan for the rich will help much either. We need to tax them on every dollar earned. Also, the super rich don't earn salaries to tax. They make money from investments. We can raise the tax on profits from investments, but that is just scratching the surface. Why does someone need more than 2 million in net worth anyway? I think every dollar should be taxed and anything over their 2 million net worth should be taxed at 100%. Nobody needs to hoard that much money when so many people could be helped with it.
I've had several income generating ideas come to mind for our Government... Our gov has an incredible inventory of property (ie. land, buildings, equipment, etc...) Among this collection, Area 51 memorabilia. So, why not go thru take some photo's and then do stuff like limited litho's, T-shirts, action figures, holograms, coffee mugs, stickers, and so forth. Then put these up for sale on Amazon, E-bay, Craigslist, affiliate sales - and so on... Along with a little tickler of future limited tine and quantity releases of additional items of interest in their stock pile. Attempting to estimate the results of which alone is mind boggling. Come on, a lil American ingenuity will cure up the debt issue, in no time at all...
Just gotta get'em to focus on income generating activities aside from taxes a bit more...
Actually, I think Rushmore (or rather the land upon which it rests), should be gifted
to Native Americans (for whom the site is considered sacred), as a gesture of restitution
for past wrongs.
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