A 40 Year Wish List, from the Wall Street Journal
You won't believe what's in that stimulus bill.
Oh? Try me.
....We've looked it over, and even we can't quite believe it. There's $1 billion for Amtrak, the federal railroad that hasn't turned a profit in 40 years;
But think of all the Americans who just might use Amtrak one day. Maybe. Perhaps.
$2 billion for child-care subsidies;
In other words, a breeding incentive....
$50 million for that great engine of job creation, the National Endowment for the Arts;
Hello, Doctor Ralph ! Tell all the BoHo's to break out their paintbrushes !
$400 million for global-warming research....
Hmmmm.....I wonder what conclusions they'll reach? Is there any doubt? Should they even bother with buying thermometers?
and another $2.4 billion for carbon-capture demonstration projects.
That's $2.4 billion just to DEMONSTRATE carbon-capture. They're not yet paying for it to be done in the real world. But you soon will be.
There's even $650 million on top of the billions already doled out to pay for digital TV conversion coupons.
That's paying a lot of bread for people to watch the circus. Didn't Juvenal have something to say about that?
....Most of the rest of this project spending will go to such things as renewable energy funding ($8 billion) or mass transit ($6 billion) that have a low or negative return on investment. Most urban transit systems are so badly managed that their fares cover less than half of their costs. However, the people who operate these systems belong to public-employee unions that are campaign contributors to . . . guess which party?
The Greens? Strom Thurmond's Dixiecrat Party? The Constitution Party? The Surprise Party? I give up. Tell us, Oh Wall Street Journal, tell us.
Naw. Let's delete that part.
.....Here's another lu-lu: Congress wants to spend $600 million more for the federal government to buy new cars. Uncle Sam already spends $3 billion a year on its fleet of 600,000 vehicles.
Well, how are they going to demonstrate Carbon Capture unless they have Carbon Emitting Cars to capture the carbon from? Doh !
....As for the promise of accountability, some $54 billion will go to federal programs that the Office of Management and Budget or the Government Accountability Office have already criticized as "ineffective" or unable to pass basic financial audits. These include the Economic Development Administration, the Small Business Administration, the 10 federal job training programs, and many more.
Those people vote too, you know. Don't they deserve something for Christmas?
Oh, and don't forget education, which would get $66 billion more. That's more than the entire Education Department spent a mere 10 years ago and is on top of the doubling under President Bush. Some $6 billion of this will subsidize university building projects. If you think the intention here is to help kids learn, the House declares on page 257 that "No recipient . . . shall use such funds to provide financial assistance to students to attend private elementary or secondary schools." Horrors: Some money might go to nonunion teachers.
I'll let that one stand on its own.
The larger fiscal issue here is whether this spending bonanza will become part of the annual "budget baseline" that Congress uses as the new floor when calculating how much to increase spending the following year, and into the future.
No, that's not an issue. Don't act like they're even arguing the point. This is going to become a permanent part of the budget. Nothing is more permanent than temporary government spending.
This is supposed to be a new era of bipartisanship, but this bill was written based on the wish list of every living -- or dead -- Democratic interest group. As Speaker Nancy Pelosi put it, "We won the election. We wrote the bill." So they did. Republicans should let them take all of the credit.
I'm really tired of people talking about bipartisanship as if it were a good thing. Republicans worked hand in hand with Democrats to run up our current bar tab of $10,800,000,000,000.00
And now the Republicans want to run for the parking lot without paying? Just because the bar tab is about to double? Now that we're teetering on the edge of a spending disaster, they don't even want to argue about who ordered the last Margarita or the three JaegerBombs or the extra-spicy buffalo wings with Ranch dip?
Freakin' cowards, all of you.
Texas Senators John Cornyn and Kay Bailey Hutchison ! ! ! I'm calling you out on this one ! ! ! Get your wrinkled butts back in there and help the Democrats blow some money.