Tell George Bush I have his economic stimulation package... right here
If even only temporarily, we need to make the interest charged on consumer debt tax deductible. If I'm not mistaken, didn't they do away with that consumer perk sometime in the mid seventies? If I'm right, and that was part of the old tax code, we should reinstate it immediately. If it's a new and original idea of my own, please leave a dollar in the hat on your way out.
By making consumer credit interest charges tax deductible (again), we'd get an economic triple play. First, consumers would get excited knowing they could finance stuff again, Second, they'd get those interest charges back as tax credits. Third, banks could get a helping hand because consumers might step up their borrowing activity again. The government would just have to bite the bullet and tighten it's belt.
There are only two facets to this plan which would require some serious attention in order to make it work. First, we have a majority of society which needs to be schooled in responsible credit usage. That means we have to teach them how to understand budgeting and what it means to over extend yourself. Second, we need a complete overhaul of the tax code from top to bottom. In fact, the enactment of a "Fair Tax" system might render this entire blog post moot.