Sunday, February 22, 2009

My Letter to the President

Sent on www.whitehouse.gov contact form:
 
Mr. President,
First of all congratulations on your election success.  Your achievement will go down in history as monumental as Jackie Robinson's, Jesse Owens, and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr among others.
I have a request that you add two more datasets to the data on recovery.gov.  The figures posted on the site are pretty lame, if you excuse my frankness.  This is not transparency, this is akin to an investor relations slideshow for Citibank and worse than useless.
I would expect to see the money as it is apportioned down to the dollar amount given to private companies and public agencies and not to even stop there.  If I have to file my taxes to the dollar, you can return the favor and let me know where those dollars are going (and not by rounding everything to billions, or even millions.  How about thousands?)  To most of us, that is a substantial amount.  $8B in other spending is not comprehensible to 99% of your citizens.
Secondly, I would like to see another dataset that covers the amount of money that is repaid on the loan.  If you are borrowing the money from our future earnings and that of our children, then we should track the rate at which the money is being replenished, or paid off.  Think of it as your credit score is about 1 right now.
If we as a country want to be a credit worthy country we must take these steps.  If you need some bright minds to help you with this task, I will make myself available.
Best,
Paul St. Amant
Small Business Owner
Tax Payer
Husband and Father of Four
Obama Supporter
 
According to the web site, "President Obama is committed to creating the most open and accessible administration in American history."  What that means, time will tell.  I know that Mr. Bush has sent me several 8x10 photos of himself updating me on things political.  (I read in some pop culture book about the different strategies of party fundraising and hands down the republicans win with the glitz).

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