Small business owner Dan Newman writes an op-ed in today’s Washington Post advocating that the government issue gift cards to help stimulate the economy.
Unlike the earlier stimulus checks, Newman’s proposed American Gift Card couldn’t be deposited into your bank account and saved – you’d only have the option of spending it.
By sending every taxpayer a $2,000 debit card, the government stimulates spending directly. The card doesn’t get deposited with a bank, a step that greatly reduced the use of last year’s rebate checks for new spending, and with a defined expiration time, perhaps a year, the program could help precisely while other programs get underway.
The American Gift Card could bear a picture of Lady Liberty, since it may be used for whatever taxpayers wish: smarter clothes, dinners out, a weekend away, a new heater. And as gift cards tend to be used in person, they are of particular interest to local businesses.
A nice, creative idea!
The Feds could time the release of the gift cards – a Presidents’ Day gift card, Memorial Day gift card, Labor Day gift card, generic Winter Holiday gift card, and even one on your birthday! This idea has legs!