Free Markets, Free People

Porkulus – It’s A Done Deal

political_pork

Well there’s an agreement on the Generational Theft Act of 2009. The squishy middle has capitulated.

As expected, just enough Republicans have signed on to ensure its passage. Names?

Specter for one:

Specter said Friday night that action was “very necessary,” and this bill, though not perfect, is better than inaction.

“I think no one could argue with the fact that the situation would be much worse without this bill,” Specter said at a news conference.

And of course, Susan Collins is the other (and Olympia Snowe is also reportedly going to vote for it). Voinavich and Martinez bailed. They’ll give this the veneer of bi-partisan legitimacy.

Oh, and the Senate has reportedly gotten the bill down to a miserly $780 to 805 billion depending on who you listen too.

Nancy Pelosi isn’t happy with the cuts:

“These cuts are very damaging — [the House bill] was put together very carefully. … The funding goes directly to school districts, they are stimulative because they maintain jobs instead of cutting jobs.”

If you believe the House bill was put together “very carefully”, then you will believe 500,000,000 Americans are losing their jobs every month.

But, even with the 3 Republicans, this monstrosity is all Democrat.

As an aside, our recent QandO poll asked which Senator was most likely to break for the bill. In that poll, Olympia Snow won with 33%. Interestingly, John McCain came in second at 29%. Specter came in third with 14%. Surprisingly, Susan Collins came in 4th with 7%.

~McQ

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16 Responses to Porkulus – It’s A Done Deal

  • I apologized to my son across dinner tonight.

    Every set of politicians we send to Washington is just sure they can pile that mountain of debt even higher, to avoid making any tough decisions that might actually impact their chances of keeping their precious offices.

    And, of course, so far every set has been right. So they will keep piling that debt higher until the whole mess collapses. I don’t know if it will be five years or ten years or twenty or forty. But, based on everything I’ve seen in my lifetime, it’s inevitable because there’s no viable mechanism to change strategies.

    And when it finally happens, they’ll look around in wonder, bleating “Who could have known it wouldn’t work this time?”

  • The GOP screwed themselves politically on this one, even though only a relative handful of “mavericks” voted for this abomination in the Senate.  Consider how this will be spun and play with so many ignorant Americans who have been terrified by the blunt statements from both Bush and TAO that we face economic Armageddon if something isn’t done: they’ll see continued job losses because this damned bill won’t stimulate much beyond the egoes of politicians and the pocketbooks of their favorite constituencies, and they’ll blame it on the GOP for “obstructing” the bill.  You don’t really think that MiniTru will honestly report that the stimulus is more full of pork than the North Carolina BBQ Festival, do you?

    What about conservative voters?  It will be hard to convince them that the GOP is the party of fiscal restraint.  Oh, only a few RINO’s went along with the democrats (spit), but it’s not because they absolutely opposed Porkapalooza.  Rather, it’s because it was just a bit too much.  Why bother to support the GOP when so many of them are nothing more than democrat-lite?  It’s like the dems (spit) wanted to commit robbery and murder, while the GOP tried to “compromise” with robbery and aggravated assault.

    I’m waiting for the conference bill to come out.  It ain’t over: Dingy Harry and SanFran Nan have another shot at porking up the final bill, and I’m sure that many GOP members will either be bribed or frightened into voting for it (bowing to the inevitable?) before it’s all over.

    A trillion bucks, shot to hell in less than a month.  We are so, so screwed.

  • The irony of it all, the first black president will sign a bill that enslaves generations of Americans. Who are these people occupying Washington DC, where did they come from and why are we letting them put us under the whip?  
    It will get worse from here…

  • I’m sure the cuts will be re-added when the House and Senate have the conference call to reconcile both versions of the bills.

    Look, since we’re in the minority anyway, and these 3 are basically useless to us, can anyone explain to me the downside of getting rid of them from the caucus? The message “if you can vote for this pork laden mess, you’re not a Republican” would be a pretty good one. And I regard Specter as highly as I regarded Lincoln Chaffe. Losing that seat one way or another would be no great loss.

    At any rate, anyone who wants to mount a primary challenge to these 3 pieces of garbage has my money and time. Maybe their Dem challenger will also.

  • I just hope that those Americans who oppose this bill will not suffer from CRS on election day 2010

  • “These cuts are very damaging — [the House bill] was put together very carefully…”   What?!?!?!?!

    It does appear the bill will pass thanks to three despicable RINOs.  I agree with shark.  They should be kicked out of the party.  They are basically democrats anyway.  A possible way to salvage this for the Republicans is to immediately kick the RINO’s that vote for the bill out of the party.  (OK, I don’t know if you can actually do that, but you know what I mean.)  This would show the country, and particularly the conservatives, that there is some hope and spine left in the Republican Party.  And it would place the blame for this bill back solely on the democrats.

  • The fact is that the Republican approach to the economy has failed, and has been proven as wrong as communism by history.  Reagan started an unsustainable policy of living beyond our means, continued by Republicans and Democrats a like.  Tax cuts and private sector money simply went into speculative bubbles rather than building the productive capacity of the economy, leading to this collapse.  We do not need short term stimulus of consumption, that would be like giving a heroin addict more heroin — it may feel good in the short term, but makes the long term problem worse.  We need investments to create a sustainable economy for the future.  The private sector has been proven unable to do this, the desire for short term profits leads to bubbles and fraud.  Government can’t plan this either.  Rather, a middle path of government directing investments makes sense.

    But the approach of the GOP has failed the test of history.  Tax cuts don’t work.  The privae sector can’t be trusted ‘on it’s own.’  That’s simply a fact of history.  Now we’re in for a painful adjustment and it’s time to repudiate the policies from 1981 onward.  That’s a good thing, the illusions are shatterng.  But we do have to change our way of life.  But the GOP approach is dead.  It must be buried.  It failed.  (And, of course, the Democrats like Clinton played that game too — the last 30 years have been built on illusion, a fake economy.)  This will also help stem our imperial ambitions.  So in all, this is a necessary douse of reality for the country.  It also shows that a lot of what the Q&O posters have been believing in recent years is dead  wrong.

  • Now Erb is supporting an enormous expansion of government after repeatedly telling us how he is the real libertarian. The Prince of Weasels strikes again. What a fraud. What a piece of shit.

  • Scott Erb “Tax cuts don’t work”    Actually tax cuts did work.    We had more receipts to the govt in tax money than ever before in history.  WHat didnt work was that congress acted like congress and spent all the extra money on pork projects.  Sorta like what they are doing now.  What  you are calling for is Socialism, which has failed every time it has been tried in history.

     

  • The fact is that the Republican approach to the economy has failed, and has been proven as wrong as communism by history.

    Since the Democrats have been in power in Congress for some time now… Congress being the one with the power of the purse…how can this be properly laid at the feet of the republicans, Scott?

    You talk about how Reagan put us on a path of living beyond our means. Let’s remember, please, that the tax cuts that Reagan initiated were made on an agreement that had the Democrats in Congress cutting spending. We’re still waiting for those spending cuts to come from Democrats. Had those spending cuts actually COME, as the Democrats promised, we’d ahve had NO defict by the time Reagan’s 8 years had ended.

    The problem isn’t low taxes, Scott… the problem is  high spending. And now you offer he even higher spending as a solution to the problem?  Yeah, that’s gonna work.

    The private sector can in fact be trusted on its own, assuming it’s actually left on its own. Without the micromanagement of the Federal government. Unfortunately, because of the likes of YOU, the test can never be made.

  • Once again Erb flaunts  his invincible ignorance of history, economics, and politics. All in one paragraph. Impressive. 
    Seeking a short term rhetorical advantage,  he once again  casts aside his claims of libertarianism to advocate more government,  but he will eventually  again claim to favor smaller government when he thinks he can make points.
    The perpetual putz.

  • The fact is that the Republican approach to the economy has failed, and has been proven as wrong as communism by history. That’s right, the vicious Republicans are as bad as the commies they hate. Only wise leftists, who are not at all like Communists, so stop saying that, can be trusted to run society. Like me.

    Reagan started an unsustainable policy of living beyond our means, continued by Republicans and Democrats a like. And it was all Reagan’s fault that the mostly Democratic Congress during his term kept increasing spending. I decree it. You see, by the holy principles of post-modernism, everything is the fault of Republicans. If Democrats do bad things, it’s still the Republican’s fault because the so-evil-they’re-as-bad-as-commies Republicans forced them to do it.

    Tax cuts and private sector money simply went into speculative bubbles rather than building the productive capacity of the economy, leading to this collapse. And the fact that Democratic legislators were encouraging Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to fuel the bubble, and blocked any attempts to defuse the situation before it burst, is simply not relevant. I decree it. Those Democrats had excellent intentions, and the business people, who are mostly evil Republicans, should have found a way to make it all work.

    And don’t start up with how the laws of economics prevented that, just don’t start! In this world, it’s the job of Democrats and wise leftists to determine what should be done, and the businesspeople and other peons, sorry, I mean engineering and technical types, are supposed to figure out how to make it happen. After all, those types could never make decisions about society as a whole. That’s the province of wise leftists with godlike powers of political science. So you righties, many of whom are those exact business, engineering, and technical types, just need to suck it up and make things work. We’ll be watching from the faculty lounge, and giving instruction as necessary.

    We do not need short term stimulus of consumption, that would be like giving a heroin addict more heroin — it may feel good in the short term, but makes the long term problem worse. So letting people keep more of their own money is bad, bad, bad. They’ll just spend on stuff they want, which doesn’t stimulate the economy nearly as well as when government spends that exact same money. Yes, we need investments to create a sustainable economy for the future, and everything government spends the money on is an investment. I decree it.

    The private sector has been proven unable to do this, the desire for short term profits leads to bubbles and fraud. Government can’t plan this either, because as I said earlier, we wise leftists are not really into the nitty-gritty stuff. Rather, a middle path of government directing investments makes sense. That basically means wise leftists in government directly the rest of you peons, sorry, I mean technocrats to do what’s needed.

    But the approach of the GOP has failed the test of history. Tax cuts don’t work. The fact that they sent revenue collections to record levels is beside the point. I decree it.

    The private sector can’t be trusted ‘on it’s own.’ That’s simply a fact of history. Now, as I’ve already pointed out, the Communists failed too. But I’ve also said that government needs to direct investments. And that’s not a thing like how the Nazis ran things, so stop saying that! It’s different, in ways that you need an advanced degree in political science to understand.

    Now we’re in for a painful adjustment and it’s time to repudiate the policies from 1981 onward. Yes, let’s go back to the policies of the late 1970s, when we were led by the wise and benificent Jimmy Carter. Yes, it was much better when we had 15% mortgage rates, 10% unemployment, and 12% inflation. Much better! Because Jimmy was wise and his intentions were good, and we suffered like we should have for our sins, and if we had just followed his lead instead of being selfish and insisting on lowering taxes on rich guys from 70%, everything would have been so, so much better.

    That adjustment is a good thing, the illusions are shattering. Mainly the illustion that you dense righties are ever qualified to make any decisions about anything.

    But we do have to change our way of life. We need to move from leftist politicians and bureaucrats and union leaders making about half of all decisions to making all of them. The GOP approach is dead. It must be buried. It failed. How many more ways can I indicate just how much I hate it? I don’t know, but the GOP is nasty and stupid and as bad as the commies, and I just can’t see why you dense righties don’t get that. And don’t start with how the guys on this site have violently criticized Republicans. Because they don’t agree with wise leftists like me, so they must be on the side of the vicious Republicans. I decree it.

    (And, of course, the Democrats like Clinton played that game too — the last 30 years have been built on illusion, a fake economy. Yes, only Democrats that completely embrace leftist solutions are helping solve anything. But that’s not socialism like the Communists tried and failed with, so stop saying that!!)

    This will also help stem our imperial ambitions. I have to bring everything back around to Iraq somehow, and the violence there is going to increase real soon now, and that last election that appeared to go so well means nothing, do you hear, nothing! I decree it!!!

    So in all, this is a necessary douse of reality for the country. Mainly the reality that leftists are running things now and we’re going to be running things forever, so you dense righties might as well get used to it. And thank goodness for this new reality, because I can now stop pretending to all this pseudo-libertarian schtick that I adopted to try and get you dense righties to take me seriously. I can come right out and fly my proud wise leftist colors all the way! I can even say that moderates like Clinton were bad as I did above, because I know in my heart that post-modern-based wise leftism is a perfect philosophy as long as you approach it pragmatically, which means you redefine things as necessary to avoid ever admitting you were wrong about anything.

    It also shows that a lot of what the Q&O posters have been believing in recent years is dead wrong. Especially those ex-military basket cases, McQ and Hollis. What fools! And the fact that I come here and actually read their drivel doesn’t mean I’m obsessed with this site and posting here to prove my self worth by holding myself above all you dense righties. It doesn’t mean that at all, I tell you! Stop psychoanalyzing me!

  • http://www.cato-at-liberty.org/2009/02/06/congressional-oversight/

    RAY SUAREZ: Has the president been too optimistic in your view on the number of jobs that could be created by a package?
    SEN. ARLEN SPECTER: No, I don’t believe he’s been too optimistic. I’m prepared to accept his figures. I think the reality is that nobody knows with any relative degree of certainty.
    We pick a figure, and it doesn’t have any scientific basis. I wouldn’t say that it’s picked out of the air, but that’s — that’s pretty close.

    from http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/politics/jan-june09/stimulus_02-05.html

  • Here’s a history lesson for you Timactual.  In 1980 debt was about 30% of GDP (going consistently down from over 100% at the end of WWII), and we had a current account surplus.  From then on — Republicans and Democrats to blame — we lived beyond our means due to increasing budget deficits (Reagan started borrow and spend) and trade deficits.  This was an imbalance that could not persist, and we’re now in a structural adjustment.  Tax cuts and the like simply fed speculative bubbles.  Since 1982 we’ve been on a wrong economic track, and now we have a painful rebalancing.  We’ll accomplish it, but the kind of policies started by Reagan and embraced by both parties have been proven wrong.  We’re undergoing a crisis that is deep and will leave America severely weakened.  We need to learn the lesson and recognize that deregulation and tax cuts are not a solution if they are bought through increased borrowing or unsustainable current account deficits.   But the good news is that the illusions of the last quarter century are finally shattering, and we are having to face reality.   Finally!

  • Here’s a history lesson for you Timactual.

    From what alternate universe, Erb?