Skip to comments.Obama-Pelosi Plan Would Create Thirty-Two Government Programs
Posted on 01/28/2009 8:18:30 AM PST by Reagan Man
The proposed Obama-Pelosi economic stimulus would end the era of merely big government and replace it with leviathan government.
"It'll never go away," says Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.), calling the plan "a permanent increase at a time when we are in the worst financial shape we've ever been in." He adds, "None of this is going to stimulate anything."
However, President Barack Obama says size doesnt matter. As he said at his inaugural, The question we ask today is not whether our government is too big or too small, but whether it works.
We should also ask whether its Constitutional, whether the plan is being sold with false advertising, and whether we can afford it.
It would require our Treasury to borrow record levels of money from overseas, perhaps more than the world is willing to lend us. It might double our $1.3-trillion deficit that now makes us more dependent on China than any other country.
Since Obama has pledged to root out unnecessary spending, then why not start with this stimulus bill? Even Sen. Kent Conrad (D-N.D.), the Senate Budget Chairman, notes that the $825 billion package at best would reduce unemployment rate by maybe 1 percent -- far less than Obamas extravagant claims.
The presidents radio address last weekend told us only what he wanted us to know -- which means he never mentioned the cost. Pollsters have told Obama and fellow Democrats to describe their plans as bold but never to mention the price tag. So much for hard choices!
That $825-billion figure -- all borrowed money -- also fails to include the interest that must be paid, which will push the total price tag over $1.1-trillion.
Those who look beneath the pile of proposed new debt wont find a pony, but they will find many false claims:
-- The notion that its about infrastructure is hype. Only 5% ($43 billion) of the bloated $825 billion package is for transportation, including only 3% for highways. Very little is shovel-ready work; most wouldnt be spent for two years or more.
-- Its not about government efficiency. The $43 billion for transportation spending is overshadowed by five times as much (more than $200 billion) to bail out state and local governments that have overspent their budgets.
-- Although Obama stated, We won't just throw money at our problems -- we'll invest in what works, $136 billion of the bill is for unproven ideas -- to start 32 new federal programs.
-- Community organizers, such as the left-wing lobbying group ACORN, would get their own new slush fund of up to $750-million.
-- Plenty of other parts dont pass either the laugh test or the smell test as a stimulus, such as $20-million to re-sod the National Mall, hundreds of millions for contraceptives, $650 million for digital TV coupons, and $250-million for an after-school snack program.
A better plan would be the genuine stimulus of tax reforms such as The Heritage Foundation has proposed, more than once. Unfortunately, most of what the stimulus plan deceptively labels as tax cuts is actually sending government checks to millions of people who dont pay income taxes.
If enacted, the Obama/Congressional proposal may exhaust Americas ability to borrow. It certainly will increase our dependency on foreign money.
Foreign borrowing by the U.S. Treasury has soared in the past year. The latest Treasury Department numbers (November) show Chinas holdings in our national debt are up to $682 billion from $459 billion in the prior 12 months. Japanese holdings declined slightly, but still are $577 billion. Englands share of American pie climbed from $170 billion to $360 billion. Oil exporters such as the Mid East and Venezuela upped their holdings from $139 billion to $198 billion. Russias skyrocketed from $33 billion to $78 billion. And foreigners who use Caribbean banks for secrecy raised their stake from $108 billion to $220 billion.
How much more can we borrow before our creditors cut us off, or our Treasury securities become junk bonds that must pay exorbitant interest rates?
If Uncle Sam borrowed this $825-billion stimulus cash from his own citizens, each household would have to fork over more than $10,000 right away as the price of his help. That would spark outrage. It also would illustrate the absurdity of claiming that government borrowing is a stimulus.
Sadly, the misnamed stimulus package is a prelude to more record spending to come. Other massive spending bills are in the pipeline for action by Congress within the next couple of months, to add trillions atop trillions.
Unfortunately, rather than recognizing that big government is the problem, those who now run Washington have an notion that government technocrats are smarter than the free enterprise system.
But we should never forget that Americas economic meltdown was prompted by government meddling, creating a quota system that required home mortgage lenders to issue sub-standard loans (see article Big-government Fingerprints on Murder Weapon). When those collapsed, the housing market tumbled and took the financial markets and everything else down with it.
Politicians at least should be honest about the cost, and that our children and grandchildren will be asked to pay it. Instead, the public is being told about the price tag, If you have to ask, you cant afford it.
Thats an excellent reason not to buy.
The Obama plan will lead to bigger government and more debt.
Why is this even news?
It's a nothing new that Hussein's "CHANGE" means--
much, much bigger government,
much more intrusive government,
much more controlling government,
much more regulating government,
much more litigious government,
much more expensive government and
much more socialist government.
That has never been in question.
But since the government will shift this cost to our grandchildren, the people supporting this don't care.
Mainly because its the biggest increase in government spending on record --- in history.
Also, Free Republic is home to political dissent and conservative opposition to Obama's liberal-socialist agenda.
Treasury to borrow record levels of money from overseas / Talk about being owned.
Yesterday Congressman Roscoe Bartlett spoke to President Obama today during a meeting with House Republicans. LINK
"Mr. President, I probably come at this from a slightly different perspective. I remember when FDR beat Hoover in 1932. So I remember the Great Depression very well. I don't remember any of the many government programs affecting the course of the Depression. Government programs didn't work then, I don't know why we think they would work now. Mr. President, I think our obsessive borrowing has fully mortgaged my kids and my grandkids. Now we're working on mortgaging my two great-grandkids. Mr. President, I think it's more than a little bit selfish to try to solve our economic problems which we created by burdening future generations yet to be born." ~~~ Said Rep. Roscoe Bartlett, R-Md.
Vote NO on the stimulus bill -- let your congress critters and the White House know it.
As Sen Coburn said: "It'll never go away"..... translation: its perpetual stimulus.
Free Republic is all about political dissent. Cong Bartlett used his free speech and got right in Obama's face. I like that.
Those are some ugly teeth. Pretty much sums up my mood.
This reminds me of a Liberal CEO concubine with an “unlimited” credit card, on a spending spree at Macy’s.
We will barely be able to make the interest payments by the time this is all said and done. In another 3 to 6 months and the plan hits the tank, it will be blamed that the first two attempts were just not big enough and more is needed.
Obama’s plan is a perpetual stimulus-recovery, but only 21% of the $825 billion is actually spent in 2009 and only one in six dollars is actually part of any tax cut policy.
Obama’s plan does nothing to expand free market GDP. It does expand the federal bureaucracy and give Democrats something to run on in 2010.
A fiscally responsible plan would be to cut taxes across the board -— corporate, capgains, personal income taxes -— and cut government spending.
The Democrats are guaranteed to fail. They have done all the very things that will throw this into a deep depression. This is identical to what FDR did in ‘36. WW2 is the only miracle that came along to rescue his legacy.
Only this time, American spirit, morality and patriotism are almost completely gone. We are in the last stages of societal decline.
This is interesting.
The US economy was making a slight recovery during the Great Depression when FDR decided to raise taxes. As the top tax rates went from 63% in 1935 to 79% in 1936, the unemployemt rate went from 21.7% in 1934, to 16.9% in 1936, to 19.0% in 1938.
Same thing with Hoover in 1932. Taxes in 1931 were at 25%. In 1932, Hoover pushed them up to 63%. While unemployemnt was 8.7% in 1930, it shot up to 23.6% in 1932.
At the same time, government spending more than doubled from $3.3-billion in 1930 to $8.2 billion in 1936.
Obama will probably be limited on any tax increases in the next year, but watch the significant rise in federal spending. Maybe 25% of GDP, or more.