30 May 2008

Fire Up!

Whether they call it that or not, the economy is in a recession, and Puerto Rico's has the look and feel of an untreated dengue-fever victim with a broken leg.

Just soak in the imagery...

Citizens, pundits, offal and Fools (notice the descending order) offer tons of potential solutions, but the Key for Fixing Puerto Rico's Economy is a very simple concept: Reduce the number of government employees.

Nothing new there, right? Hell, I've kicked that old coconut around several times. What else can be said about a bureaucratic tumor that absorbs over 40% of direct and indirect jobs? (Call them what they are: votes.) How can an economy improve when a little over 81% of its total government budget is set to pay salaries and benefits? Let's just hope that the estimated 10-12% of "corruption loss" is in that 81% or otherwise Our government would be running a huge deficit and not getting things done...


Having whacked around the old notion (old because it's been valid for five decades), here's the new twist, the Jenius touch that you have unknowingly been waiting for: Turn it into an economic stimulus program by matching funds for new businesses.

The gist is simple: Dump 50,000 government workers, beginning with "advisors." That takes care of some 18,000-23,000 high-priced contracts and doesn't require any type of severance package. Complete the 50,000 cutdown with "permanent" workers who receive the equivalent of a two-year salary-plus-benefits package as a lump sum. (Easily affordable after chopping the numbnut advisors down to size.) Then, have the government match funds for those ex-employees who want to start a new business.

Sure, a lot of the downsized folks will up and leave the Island. Bye-bye! But by making the next step another government investment in new businesses, We can slash the tumor by 10-20%, save government money (short-term and long-term) and launch--what?--500-800 new businesses in a truly far-reaching method.

Here's the kicker: With that much at stake, how much do you bet that idiotic procedures and general bullpuckeyness to start a new business gets slashed dramatically?

Okay, I'm done for today. Tell The Jellyfish (you know I means da guv) and The Fools to get cracking on this... and make sure they understand I mean "to get cracking," not "to get more crack."

The Jenius Has Spoken.

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