Obama and the Bong-Hit Budgeting Plan
It looks like Obama has reprised his role as the leader of the “Choom Gang”, the uber-cool, pot-smoking rebels of his college days. How else can one explain Obama’s latest budget proposal, in which he will, according to the Washington Post, call “for an end to the era of austerity that has dogged much of his presidency…”
Seriously? And end to austerity? That is like Rosie O'Donnell announcing an end to her era of starvation. That’s like Lindsay Lohan calling for an end to her strict sobriety, or Bill Clinton announcing an end to his marital fidelity.
The thought that the Obama presidency to date has been an era of austerity is so comical, so absolutely farcical, that when I first heard the comment I assumed it had to be from a Saturday Night Live skit. I mean, the utter disregard for spending restraint under Obama is legendary. Obama’s spending makes George W. Bush’s spending seem downright miserly by comparison, and that is quite a feat!
Obama had barely changed the drapes in the Oval Office before he signed off on the $830 “stimulus” bill, an orgy of handouts to Democrat special interests and labor unions under the guise of economic recovery. It was never intended to stimulate the economy, which is why unemployment INCREASED to over 10% and stayed above 9% for his entire first term, and why Obama joked about “shovel ready jobs” not being as shovel ready as they imagined.
The stimulus bill increased baseline federal spending by huge margins, to levels which quickly became the new standard, which is why programs and departments that had seen budget increases of more than 20% screamed bloody murder at the thought of even a 2% budget cut. This was evidence of “slashing” budgets, rather than an acknowledgment that even after the “slashing”, the budgets had still seen more than double-digit increases.
Obama laughably brags that he has cut the deficit in half now, but conveniently omits that he only cut it in half after quadrupling Bush’s largest deficit in his first year, and after five straight years of trillion dollar-plus deficits. He is grading “progress” on a very generous curve. He called Bush “unpatriotic” (no) and “irresponsible” (yes) for racking up $4 trillion in new debt in eight years, yet Obama has racked up nearly $7 trillion in just five years. If Bush was unpatriotic, Obama is downright treasonous. What’s even worse is that this “reduced” deficit (which is still approaching $100 billion more than Bush’s largest deficit) is a temporary reprieve, and the CBO projects the deficit to start rising again next year, skyrocketing to $912 billion by 2020, and then over a trillion annually after that indefinitely. That is utterly reckless.
Today, more than $250 billion in taxpayer dollars goes to service interest on the debt, and by 2025 that will rise to more than $800 billion per year. That is $800 billion in payments for which we receive nothing in return, and those payments will rise until they consume the entire federal budget. Actually, they won’t, because creditors will stop lending to us long before then, and then we will get a crash course in forced austerity, just like Greece.
The most frightening thing in all of this is that these are the projections of the Congressional Budget Office which, by law, must use static scoring methods, which does not allow them to factor in behavioral changes of taxpayers and consumers in response to rising tax levels. The reality is that taxes will have to rise to offset the rising debt load, which will suck more and more capital from the private sector, which will lead to fewer jobs and lower economic growth, which will lead to raising taxes on fewer taxpayers, which will lead to lower economic output, until the death spiral is complete.
Yet here we have a president, and his party, that are not only not frightened of the skyrocketing debt being accumulated by their insane policies, but who are actually demanding MORE spending! While they are cutting the defense budget yet again (one of the few expenditures of the federal government justified by the Constitution), they are insisting on more spending on food stamps and unemployment checks (by the way, if the economy is recovering as Obama claims, why the need for more food stamps and unemployment payments?). More than 47 million Americans are now on food stamps, by far a historic record, and not one of which we should be proud.
Showing he has a complete lack of understanding of basic economics, the Obama budget calls for harsher tax laws governing U.S. corporations that have operations overseas, as well as foreign companies with divisions headquartered in the U.S. Obama plans to restrict the ability of these corporations to use the provisions of the tax code (you know, the one written by Congress, with regulations written by government bureaucrats) to minimize their tax exposure. Just keep this in mind the next time you hear Democrats vilifying corporations which send jobs overseas. It is our government which is driving the jobs overseas by treating them as despised enemies, rather than valued partners.
The White House proposed spending another $56 billion on what it dubs the “Opportunity, Growth, and Security Initiative”, but for all the good it will do it might as well be called the “Puppies, Rainbows, and Warm Blankets Initiative”. This initiative would be paid for by “closing loopholes” (again, the ones lobbyists pay politicians to insert into the tax code, and then feign outrage when corporations take advantage of them) and raising taxes yet again on high earners. All this will do is drive much needed capital out of the market, which is the same thing we’ve seen for the last five years as Obama continues to show his utter contempt for those who actually fuel economic growth with their entrepreneurialism. This is the economic equivalent of beating your wife every day and then acting shocked and outraged when she leaves you.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid stated of the proposed budget that “…Obama’s budget will be a powerful statement of Democratic principles,” and for once I am in complete agreement. Obama’s budget reflects Democrats’ drive to expand government dependency, cripple the military, and reward political allies and donors. In short, it is an inglorious display of the blatant corruption which has become the hallmark of the modern Democrat Socialist Party.
Americans had better wake up. All we need to do is look at Greece to see what happens when a nation deludes itself into thinking it can rack up massive debt loads to pay for a lavish welfare state. At some point, the piper demands to be paid, and the pipeline of easy money is cut off. Let’s pray we show some sense and wean ourselves off of the welfare crack before we have a crippling withdrawal.
We are stuck with Obama for three more years, but that doesn’t mean we have to tolerate his reckless policies for that long. It’s time the American people stood up and demanded a halt to the insanity. Heaven knows our “leaders” aren’t going to do it on their own.