On the heels--or under, actually--of Our (non)governor's presentation of his government recovery plan, wherein some 30,000 public sector deadbeats need to be culled (not enough, but that's a topic for another day), can you guess what appears as part of the "We have to avoid junk bond status" plan?
A tax on every shipping container coming into the Isle of Enchantment.
Uh-huh. A tax. On every shipping container. And We being an island, you know.
Was this part of Luis "The Larva" Fortuño's address to the people? Nuh-uh. It was released as part of the plan, tucked into the middle somewhere, like a forgotten shopping list in a really boring book. Only this particular shopping list kills any chance of a recovery We might have had for at least several years.
Remember when I said the impact of the 7% sales tax would be actually closer to twice that much? According to recent (January 2009) economic studies, the cost to the consumer of the sales tax is just over 14%. The 7% tax didn't replace the former 6.6%: it got added to it.
Took the damn economists three years to catch up with Me. The Fools never will.
The shipping container tax already has a moniker: furgonazo. "Furgón" means shipping container and the -azo suffix means "Holy shit." Even if the tax is as low as 2.5% (the chances of it being that "reasonable" are the same as The Larva growing a pair...), the impact will severely cut into every aspect of business and daily life here. If it is as high as the expected 5-6%, in essence re-placing the import tax the sales tax was supposed to replace (only this time, nothing is exempt), then you can expect the same doubling effect, though this time, it won't be because of business "friction," but because of sheer added cost.
This is a recovery plan? The worst part about this is that it's the best The Larva can do, not only because he's lacking a notochord, but because We have been brought to this point by 6 successive dolts with egos the size of stadiums, with brains and integrity that fit in a thimble with space left over for a teaspoon of sugar.
These 6 numbskulls--Ferré, Hernández (three terms), Romero (two terms), Rosselló (two terms), Calderón and Acevedo--made this mess and made it worse. Now after 40 years of multi-party incompetence, We are left with The Larva to somehow find a way to clean it all up. That's like having the Mafia take over the docks and sending Spongebob in to kick them out.
Spongebob... heh-heh. I actually voted for him over The Larva.
Will We have to deal with the furgonazo? Damn right We will. We're no longer even in supposed control of Our economy. The shot-callers now are bond raters, those happy-go-lucky tapeworms who buy and sell mathematical illusions. Only Our illusion has come crashing apart and We gotta do what incompetent money-handlers gotta do.
Except that the money-handlers aren't paying as much as We--the people that cheered them and voted them in--are going to pay.
Cheer now, suckers. The wake-up call was long overdue.
The Jenius Has Spoken.