Thomas Friedman in the NYTimes uses an expression I've been using for years now:
Of course, it's not just that whatever "stimulus" package Washington comes up with has to be "spent wisely." It's also that the whole political process by which such decisions are made needs to be rebooted as well.
Congressional reapportionment needs to be revisited. Constituents are supposed to choose their representatives, not the other way around.
And it might even be time to re-think the electoral college, a relic of the 18th century -- when it could take three months to tally the results from an election, a process that now takes hours if not minutes.
There is a whole host of Constitutional provisions that need to be restored, starting with the clause that mandates hard national currency -- not the printing press money that floods our national coffers today.
Or the provision that says that copyrights should be for a limited time, not virtual perpetuity.
And while we're at it, the Supreme Court might re-visit that 1888 decision that extended the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment to corporations, giving them the same rights as real persons. That might go along way toward reducing the influence of big money on the political process.
Or how about that antiquated idea that war needs to be declared by Congress, not the Executive? The framers knew what they were doing with that one, but it's been pretty much discarded since World War II.
So, yeah, by all means. "Reboot America." But not just so that we have better Internet on high-speed trains. So that the whole idea that became "America" undergoes the kind of restoration that will carry those concepts effectively into a new century and millennium.
Otherwise, civilization is going to be taking gas from the Chinese for a long time to come.