Posts Tagged ‘Congressional Budget Office’

ObamaCare Is A Death Panel For Jobs

February 11, 2011

Let’s call ObamaCare what it is: a death panel for jobs.

Oh, ObamaCare will become a death panel for senior citizens, too.  Don’t get me wrong.  First ObamaCare will take over the health care system.  Then it will poison the entire economy.  Tax collections will go down 1) because unemployed people don’t pay taxes; and 2) because unemployment people actually consume taxpayer dollars.  But ObamaCare will force America to spend trillions of extra dollars.  And then as a result of the ensuing desperate times ObamaCare will create, government bureaucrats will start having to make decisions as to who lives and who dies.

Here are the facts:

CBO Director Says Obamacare Would Reduce Employment by 800,000 Workers
2:37 PM, Feb 10, 2011 • By JEFFREY H. ANDERSON

Testifying today before the House Budget Committee, Congressional Budget Office (CBO) Director Doug Elmendorf confirmed that Obamacare is expected to reduce the number of jobs in the labor market by an estimated 800,000. Here are excerpts from the exchange:

Chairman [Paul] Ryan: “[I]t’s been argued…that the new health care law will create jobs and increase labor force participation. But if I recall from your analysis, it was quite the opposite. Is that not the case?”

Director [Douglas] Elmendorf : “Yes.”…

[…]

Rep. [John] Campbell: Thank you, Mr. Chairman, we’ll — and Dr. Elmendorf — and we’ll continue this conversation right now. First on health care, before I get to — before I get to broader issues, you just mentioned that you believe — or that in your estimate, that the health care law would reduce the labor used in the economy by about 1/2 of 1 percent, given that, I believe you say, there’s 160 million full-time people working in ’20-’21.  That means that, in your estimation, the health care law would reduce employment by 800,000 in ’20-’21. Is that correct? 

Director Elmendorf: Yes. The way I would put it is that we do estimate, as you said, that…employment will be about 160 million by the end of the decade.  Half a percent of that is 800,000.

If history is any guide, the CBO is off by a factor of at least ten.  So it will probably be more like 8 million jobs than 800,000.  But it’s really much worse than that.  Our economy is vulnerable.  Bad news has a way of unleashing negative consequences that go far beyond and effect that something taken in total isolation would produce.

This 800,000 – or more probably 8 million – is just chicken feed.  It is part of a much larger Obama death panel for jobs that has already been underway for some time.  As Business Insider puts it:

“Analysis of weekly unemployment data and covered employees shows that 5,977,844 benefit paying jobs have been lost in the last year.”

Here’s the world of hurt Obama has put America in a picture:

That is a very steep slide into a very dark hole.  And it is entirely due to the toxic effects of Obama and the Democrat Party on our economy and on our way of life.

Our economy is going to be a victim of the Obama death panel.  Unless its blatant unconstitutionality doesn’t get this 2,600-page piece of treason overturned first.

“God damn America” is upon us.

CBO Reveals That ObamaCare Will INCREASE Prescription Drug Prices

November 7, 2010

It’s getting harder and harder to find something about ObamaCare that turns out not to have been a complete load of crap.

U.S. Rep. Ryan: CBO confirms Obamacare will increase drug prices
11/4/2010

In letter to Ranking Member Ryan, CBO highlights the latest health care broken promise

WASHINGTON – In response to a request from House Budget Committee Ranking Republican Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, the Congressional Budget Office [CBO] confirmed that President Obama’s massive health care law will increase prescription drug prices. The CBO confirms the range of onerous restrictions and requirements will drive health care costs up, at odds with the claims made by its proponents. CBO’s letter specifies that manufacturers will have an incentive to raise drug prices and that, as a result, health care costs will increase for some seniors and for those who are uninsured.

In response to the findings, Ranking Member Ryan issued the following statement:

“On Tuesday, the American electorate forcefully repudiated President Obama’s agenda, including his massive health care overhaul. Today, the Congressional Budget Office refuted President Obama’s claims, making clear that his policies will drive health care costs up, not down. Especially troubling for many seniors is the news that their prescription drug costs and premiums will increase as a result of this legislation. I will continue to work to repeal this deeply flawed overhaul, advancing instead patient-centered health care reform and reforms to secure Medicare for current and future generations.”

Highlights from the CBO’s letter to Ranking Member Ryan:

“[The] increase in prices would make federal costs for Medicare’s drug benefit and the costs faced by some beneficiaries slightly higher than they would be in the absence of those provisions…”

“The legislation also imposes an annual fee on manufacturers and importers of brand-name drugs. CBO expects that the fee will probably increase the prices of drugs purchased through Medicare and the prices of newly introduced drugs purchased through Medicaid and other federal programs by about 1 percent. Those increases will be in addition to the ones described above that stem from the new requirements for discounts and rebates.”

“The premiums of drug plans will increase along with the increase in net drug prices, so the premiums paid by beneficiaries will increase slightly.”

To read CBO Director Doug Elmendorf’s Letter to Ranking Member Paul Ryan:

http://cbo.gov/ftpdocs/116xx/doc11674/11-04-Drug_Pricing.pdf

Oops.

ObamaCare and Obama both translate to “one big ass mistake, America.”

How CBO Scored Baucus Health Care Plan As Defict Neutral

October 9, 2009

Suppose I told you that I can fly by flapping my arms at a rate of 40 miles an hour, and I were to ask you how long it would take me to get to the top of a hill located 30 miles away.  The correct answer would be to say, “45 minutes.”

In actual point of fact, of course, I can’t fly by flapping my arms, I can’t walk at anywhere near the rate of 40 miles an hour, and I would likely have to take a considerably longer route up to the hilltop.  It would probably take me a good two days to get to that hilltop, if I were operating in the realm of factual reality.  But your job wasn’t to check whether I had wings; it was to score the math in my proposal.

That’s basically the sort of answer the Congressional Budget Office gave to the $829 billion (so far) Baucus health plan.

When the Senate Finance Committee handed the abbreviated version of the Baucus plan to the CBO, the CBO assumed that Congress would do exactly what the plan said Congress was supposed to do.  And if Congress does ONLY what is in the bill without adding ANYTHING, and imposes EVERY unpopular (even with Democrats) tax that the bill calls for, the CBO claimed that the Baucus plan would cost a deficit-neutral $829 billion over ten years.

Here are some things that would have to happen for the deficit-neutral $829 billion cost projection to be even close to correct:

First, the Medicare budget – which has never been cut or reduced in spite of repeated attempts to do so in the past – would have to be slashed by $404 billion over ten years.  Senior citizens would absolutely freak.  It will not happen.  If it did happen, Democrats would lose every single seat in the next election, as Republicans simply promised that if they are voted in, they would overturn the bill.

So add that $404 billion back in.  And the bill is already no longer even CLOSE to being “deficit neutral.”

Second, there are $201 billion in taxes for the so-called “Cadillac” health care plans.  And while there are some bigwig execs that collect such benefits, the overwhelming majority of the plans go to union employees.

Question: do you truly believe that Democrats won’t exempt the Democrat-supporting unions – which will just go to show what a truly partisan plan the Democrats are truly offering – before all is said and done?

So you can subtract a whopping load of the $200 billion in tax revenue.   It aint going to happen.  And that deficit this bill will create will go up by another giant amount.

Third, the Baucus plan is going to impose $121 billion in taxes – with $29 billion of that just discovered hidden in the byzantine language of the bill  – on insurers and medical device suppliers – which the CBO has said would simply be passed on to customers in higher prices.

This amounts to a tax on customers that is passed off as “fees” for the business that will pass the taxes on to customers.  It is simply a cowardly way to raise taxes.

And this goes to the heart of what is wrong with “the public option.”  If you tax the insurers and the providers in order to generate revenue for the public option, what obviously happens?  You undermine the private companies in order to supplant them with the government.  It will drive the private industry out of the industry, leaving only the government to fill the vacuum that it created in the first place.

In addition to those taxes, there will also be $27 billion in taxes collected from those who will be forced to buy insurance.  So much for Obama’s promise that people making under $250,o00 won’t see their taxes go up a single dime.  Unless you want to argue that “$27 billion is NOT a single dime,” so Obama was telling us the truth.

Healthy younger people who have historically decided they could forgo insurance will HAVE to pay significantly into the Democrats’ system in order to “spread the risk and share the burden.”  Too bad they didn’t know that when they voted for Obama.  What can I say except, “Surprise!”

Fourth, it needs to be pointed out that after that ten years, the costs of the Baucus bill would absolutely skyrocket.  Why?  Because the Baucus plan – if passed – would begin collecting taxes/fees beginning next year, but would not actually begin supplying benefits and thus accumulating costs until after 2013 — and don’t go fully into effect until 2015.  The Baucus plan will therefore have three to as much as five years to collect revenue before having to pay out any money.  That makes it a lot easier to be “deficit neutral.”  But it’s based on smoke and mirrors.  And of course outright lies.

But unfortunately, the CBO only scores the plan for the first ten years.

Stop and think: the federal budget deficit for 2009 was just announced to be a an absolutely staggering $1.4 TRILLION – which is more than THREE TIMES more than Bush’s all-time high 2008 deficit of $459 billion.  Which incredibly cynical Democrats pounced upon as “fiscally irresponsible.”  And Obama’s 2009 deficit will represent an astounding and utterly unsustainable 9.9% of the nation’s entire gross domestic product (it was 3.2% in spend-crazy 2008).  There is utterly no possible way we will be able to afford to see our spending continue to skyrocket in future years as it will under the Baucus plan.

And fifth, it turns out that Joe Wilson was more right when he shouted “You lie!” at Obama for saying that illegal immigrants would not be covered than many first realized.

According to what we’re being told, the Baucus plan would cover 94% of the population by 2019.  That means about 25 million people would not be covered.  Including illegal immigrants.  From the AP:

It said that by 2019, “the number of nonelderly people who are uninsured would be reduced by about 29 million,” either through private insurance or by enrolling in federal programs. That would leave an additional 25 million uninsured, about one-third of them illegal immigrants who are not eligible for coverage under the bill.

At the time that Wilson made that outburst, the language in the plans actually proved that Obama was factually wrong — and the Democrats’ proposals WOULD have covered illegals.  They since tightened up the language such that illegals are excluded.

But ARE they excluded?  It turns out that this is just another fantasy, smoke-and-mirrors illusion as well.  The fact of the matter is that the Supreme Court has been very consistent in its interpretation of the word “persons” over the last couple of decades.  The SCOTUS has repeatedly ruled the “persons” means ALL people in the country, whether citizen or illegal alien whenever government social plans have been at issue.

Do you know what that means?  It means that the only way to prevent illegal immigrants from being allowed to obtain benefits from a big government social program is to not have the big government social program in the first place.

Illegal immigrants WILL ultimately be covered under this plan.  Don’t be so naive as to think otherwise.  That will cost us plenty.  And nobody is factoring it in.

Medicare has cost more than NINE TIMES more than projected by 1990:

In 1966, the House Ways and Means Committee estimated Medicare would cost $12 billion a year by 1990; in 1990, however, Medicare cost $107 billion, nine times more than its estimate.

And the Medicare program is so deep in the bottomless pit of red ink that Newseek says it could go bankrupt as soon as NEXT YEAR.

Does anyone think the government will do better counting its cost now than it ever has in the past?  Does anyone truly believe that a president who created a deficit THREE TIMES higher than Bush’s historic 2008 deficit (again, $1.4 TRILLION vs. $459 billion) will be able to control spending?

Think about it: Medicare is about to go bankrupt even as Democrats are voting to raid some half trillion dollars from it to pay for their new liberal health gimmick.

We need to fix and reform Medicare rather than create a giant system that will make the coming health care collapse all the greater.

Giant Hyopcrisy Of Left Revealed Through Grayson ‘Die Quickly’ Remarks

October 2, 2009

In England, Parliament often takes on the form of professional wrestling, with members loudly decrying one another with nothing sans public opinion to monitor what they say or how they say it.

But in America, we’re assured, we have a greater sense of political decorum.

That “decorum” was “shockingly” violated when Rep. Joe Wilson blurted out, “You lie!” during a speech that President Obama called Congress into session to make.  It didn’t matter that Joe Wilson was actually RIGHT when he said Obama was lying.  As the Washington Examiner pointed out, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office declared:

“Under H.R. 3200, a ‘Health Insurance Exchange’ would begin operation in 2013 and would offer private plans alongside a public option…H.R. 3200 does not contain any restrictions on noncitzens—whether legally or illegally present, or in the United States temporarily or permanently—participating in the Exchange.”

No, it was beside the point that Joe Wilson was right and Obama really WAS lying.  What mattered was that decorum had been violated.

And then there was somthing else that Nancy Pelosi made – inspired by the “hateful remark” made by Joe Wilson – that further ratcheted up the debate:

Speaker Nancy Pelosi: “I have concerns about some of the language that is being used because I saw … I saw this myself in the late ’70s in San Francisco,” Pelosi said, choking up and with tears forming in her eyes. “This kind of rhetoric is just, is really frightening and it created a climate in which we, violence took place and … I wish that we would all, again, curb our enthusiasm in some of the statements that are made.”

(Youtube here).

Nancy Pelosi, as I point out here, cried her alligator tears to demonize Wilson and by extension Republicans, all the while pointing out invented facts.  Among other things, the violence that she alluded to was committed by a career DEMOCRAT, and it didn’t have anything to do with “rhetoric.”  Rather, Harvey Milk and George Moscone were murdered by a San Francisco District 8 Democrat official named Dan White because Milk and Moscone had refused to reappoint him.

So Nancy Pelosi came out and lied about and then demagogued a historical event as a ploy to demonize Republicans and anything they might say in opposition to the liberal agenda.  It was a vile thing for her to do.

The fact of the matter was that Joe Wilson was wrong in his outburst, and he apologized both personally and in a letter.

Didn’t matter.  Nancy Pelosi’s House censured him anyway, taking a day of the people’s time to do it.  “Decorum,” remember.

So with all that as backdrop, let’s proceed to the latest bit of “This kind of rhetoric” that “is just, is really frightening” and which could easily create “a climate in which … violence” could take place.

Representative Alan Grayson, Democrat-Florida, came to the same House floor that Joe Wilson had sat on, and said:

“It’s my duty and pride tonight to be able to announce exactly what the Republicans plan to do for health care in America… It’s a very simple plan. Here it is. The Republican health care plan for America: ‘don’t get sick.’ If you have insurance don’t get sick, if you don’t have insurance, don’t get sick; if you’re sick, don’t get sick. Just don’t get sick. … If you do get sick America, the Republican health care plan is this: ‘die quickly.’”

(Youtube here).

It was utterly outrageous.  For two reasons.  Number one, the Republicans – who have submitted more than three dozen health care reform bills and who actually held them over their head and waved them during the Obama speech – currently have a major bill to reform health bill available to any who would just look at it.  It is just a lie that amounts to rank demagoguery to claim that Republicans don’t have a plan beyond, “don’t get sick” and “die quickly.”  Number two, the polls are crystal clear: senior citizens – who presumably would not want to rely on a plan to “not get sick” and then to “die quickly” – are opposed to the Democrats’ plan by a nearly 2-1 margin.  From Rasmussen:

The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 56% are opposed to the plan.

Senior citizens are less supportive of the plan than younger voters. In the latest survey, just 33% of seniors favor the plan while 59% are opposed. The intensity gap among seniors is significant. Only 16% of the over-65 crowd Strongly Favors the legislation while 46% are Strongly Opposed.

So according to Alan Grayson, not only Republicans, but nearly two out of every three seniors who basically support the Republican position on health care, want seniors to die.  Grayson’s remark was both insane and immoral.

Republicans called upon Alan Grayson to do what Joe Wilson had done (RIGHT AWAY) and apologize for his statement.  Here’s what they got:

Republicans got an apology of sorts from Democratic Rep. Alan Grayson Wednesday – it just wasn’t the one they wanted.

Instead of saying he was sorry about accusing Republicans of wanting people to “die quickly,” he gave an apology “to the dead.”

“I would like to apologize,” he said. “I apologize to the dead and their families that we haven’t voted sooner to end this holocaust in America.”

And thus a man representing the party that has murdered nearly 50 million human beings before they could even enjoy being born compares Republicans to Adolf Hitler and their actions to the murder of six million Jews.

That same article, for what it’s worth, also further points out what a patholigical liar Grayson is:

Grayson provided the contretemps of the day on Capitol Hill, and even one of his party’s leaders, Democratic Caucus Chairman John B. Larson of Connecticut, at one point publicly called on him to apologize for Tuesday night’s speech.

“I wouldn’t have used the words that Mr. Grayson has,” Larson said. “I would encourage Alan to apologize.”

Later, Grayson contested whether Larson really meant what he said.

“I spoke to him and he did not ask me to apologize,” Grayson offered.

He also claimed he hadn’t said “Republicans want you to die quickly” – until a reporter read his words back to him.

Not only did Grayson say “Republicans want you to die quickly”; he literally had the words written down on a giant card which he displayed on an easel as he spoke.  That’s how much of a twisted lying weasel this guy is.

And do the Democrats – who as we now know so value decorum – call upon Alan Grayson to first apologize and then shut his lying mouth?

Absolutely not.

Did the Democrats – who literally shed alligator tears decrying the hateful rhetoric – demand that one of their own cease and desist from hateful rhetoric?

Absolutely not.

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi had this to say to defend the man who said that Republicans want seniors to die (with said Republicans supported by 59% of seniors) and that the Republicans had created a holocaust of people dying without health care:

“We have to have a debate that is not distracted from… Apparently Republicans are holding Democrats to a higher level than they are holding their own members,” she said, referring to floor comments by some Republicans who have said Democratic health care reforms would lead to higher deaths among seniors.

“There’s no more reason for Mr. Grayson to apologize… If anybody’s going to apologize everybody should apologize,” Pelosi said at her weekly press conference.

Well again, Nancy Pelosi, in defending Grayson, has to lie to do it.  Republicans aren’t trying to hold Democrats to a “higher standard”:

Wilson’s conduct was denounced by Democratic and Republican lawmakers. Senator John McCain of Arizona, Obama’s Republican opponent in the 2008 presidential race, called Wilson’s outburst “totally disrespectful.”

“He should apologize,” McCain said in an interview on CNN.

Many other Republicans called for Wilson to apologize, including his Republican House leadership.  And Joe Wilson DID apologize.

“I let my emotions get the best of me when listening to the president’s remarks regarding the coverage of illegal immigrants in the health-care bill,” Wilson said in a statement. “While I disagree with the president’s statement, my comments were inappropriate and regrettable.”

So it’s a lie that Republicans are trying to hold Democrats to a “higher standard.”  Rather, they are trying to hold Democrats to the VERY SAME standard Republicans had held for themselves, and in fact the VERY SAME STANDARD THAT DEMOCRATS HAD JUST HELD REPUBLICANS TO.

Note to Nancy Pelosi and her Democrat minions: please don’t get so damn hoity toity with your self righteous outrage when it suits you, only to show what blatant hypocrites you are the very next moment when it suits you.  Your hypocrisy shines through like brilliant glittering diamonds.

As vile, hateful, and dishonest as Alan Grayson’s remarks have been, that isn’t where the real outrage is.  No, the real outrage is the complete dishonesty and the rabid demagoguery of the Democrat leadership – especially as epitomized in Nancy Pelosi.

When a party demands that one party be held accountable to violations to “decorum,” and then cynically violates that very same decorum with far more loathsome and dishonest outbursts, it is past time to remove that party from power.

Democrats’ Effort To Fearmonger Path To Socialized Medicine Has Been Tried Before

August 18, 2009

In the mainstream media narrative, Sarah Palin is demonized as “about half a whack job” and her statement about “death panels” is literally interpreted in a way I’d love to see them apply JUST ONCE to the Constitution.  Conservatives were denounced as an “angry mob,” as “un-American,” and as exhibiting Nazi characteristics by the Democrat Speaker of the House.

The media loves to talk about rightwing fearmongering.

I’d like to say a little more about leftwing fearmongering.

How about the one that we need to pass health care reform in order to get our economy out of the toilet?

A smattering of various Obama “warnings” fearmongering health care:

- “We must lay a new foundation for future growth and prosperity, and a key pillar of a new foundation is health insurance reform.”

- Obama cast retooling the U.S. health-care system as crucial to the nation’s economic success. Reform would help rein in the national deficit and rebuild the economy, he argued, in a way that would help middle-class workers, whose wages have stagnated in recent years largely because of spiraling health-care costs.

- WASHINGTON: President Barack Obama warned on Thursday that the United States would not rebuild its economy unless political leaders joined him immediately on a perilous political drive for healthcare reform.

- President Obama warned Wednesday night that health-care reform is central to rebuilding the economy “stronger than before,” and without congressional action on health-care reform, “We’re guaranteed to see Medicare and Medicaid basically break the federal budget.”

And our last Obama “warning”:

“The country has to reform its health care system or else not only are you going to continue to have people really going through a hard time, we’re also going see a continuing escalation of our budget problems that can’t get under control,” Obama told Moran. “I think America has to win it here.”

In the dialogue surrounding health care, Obama warned against “scare tactics,” which he said are fostering anxiety and serving to distract Americans from the plan’s principles.

What’s nice about the last one is that it includes fearmongering on the one hand with warning against “scare tactics” on the other.  Obama tells us one the one hand that our economy will plummet unless we implement ObamaCare, and then demonizes everyone who has a different fearmongering message.

It doesn’t matter that Obama’s urgings that we pass health care “reform” will lower our costs and boost are economy are entirely false:

Under questioning by members of the Senate Budget Committee, Douglas Elmendorf, director of the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, said bills crafted by House leaders and the Senate health committee do not propose “the sort of fundamental changes” necessary to rein in the skyrocketing cost of government health programs, particularly Medicare. On the contrary, Elmendorf said, the measures would pile on an expensive new program to cover the uninsured.

Though President Obama and Democratic leaders have repeatedly pledged to alter the soaring trajectory — or cost curve — of federal health spending, the proposals so far would not meet that goal, Elmendorf said, noting, “The curve is being raised.” His remarks suggested that rather than averting a looming fiscal crisis, the measures could make the nation’s bleak budget outlook even worse.

It also doesn’t seem to matter that, given that the “reforms” Obama is seeking wouldn’t take effect until at least 2013, there is little reason to rush headlong into anything other than opportunistic partisan demagoguery.  And yet Barack Obama was out there rushing “reform” and calling August 1st “the people’s deadline” even as polls showed “the people” overwhelmingly wanting Congress to take time crafting health care legislation.

Interestingly, these tricks of fearmongering health care “reform” in the name of averting economic calamity and trying to rush the process through have been tried before.  Think Bill Clinton, First Inaugural Address, 1993:

But all of our efforts to strengthen the economy will fail—let me say this again; I feel so strongly about this—all of our efforts to strengthen the economy will fail unless we also take this year, not next year, not 5 years from now but this year, bold steps to reform our health care system.

In 1992, we spent 14 percent of our income on health care, more than 30 percent more than any other country in the world, and yet we were the only advanced nation that did not provide a basic package of health care benefits to all of its citizens. Unless we change the present pattern, 50 percent of the growth in the deficit between now and the year 2000 will be in health care costs. By the year 2000 almost 20 percent of our income will be in health care. Our families will never be secure, our businesses will never be strong, and our Government will never again be fully solvent until we tackle the health care crisis. We must do it this year.

The combination of the rising cost of care and the lack of care and the fear of losing care are endangering the security and the very lives of millions of our people. And they are weakening our economy every day. Reducing health care costs can liberate literally hundreds of billions of dollars for new investment in growth and jobs. Bringing health costs in line with inflation would do more for the private sector in this country than any tax cut we could give and any spending program we could promote. Reforming health care over the long run is critically essential to reducing not only our deficit but to expanding investment in America.

What’s interesting about this is that liberals depict the Clinton years as the time when the streets were lined with gold and every child went to bed in a warm house with a full tummy.

So the point would obviously be, either Clinton was fearmongering health care in a way that did not turn out to be true at all, or the “glorious Clinton economy” is itself a fabrication.  Because somehow Bill Clinton had to flounder along with no health care reform.

We need to put some things into historic perspective: 1) Bill Clinton so mismanaged the country his first two years in office that it led to the largest political tsunami ever experienced in American history as Republicans took over in an unprecedented landslide 1994 election.  2) Many of the benefits that Bill Clinton has received credit for were actually enacted by the Republican Congress (example: welfare reform).  3) Bill Clinton benefited from an economy that was just recovering from a severe recession at the end of the Bush I administration as Clinton took over.  By contrast, George Bush II – like Barack Obama now – had a significant recession handed to him that will count against his average performance.  In President Bush’s case, that recession was compounded by the worst attack on American soil in nearly 200 years  in the 9/11 terror attack.  4) Bill Clinton changed the way unemployment figures were calculated back in 1994 – making comparisons to previous eras appear far more rosy than they really were.  5) The “Clinton Budget Surplus” is in reality a myth.  In actuality, Clinton created a smoke and mirror illusion by transferring “public debt” costs which are calculated as part of the budget over to “intergovernmental holdings” (eg., by borrowing from Social Security) which are not counted as part of the public debt.

I might also point out that Bill Clinton’s famous statement from his State of the Union Speech in January 1996 - “THE ERA OF BIG GOVERNMENT IS OVER” – tacitly recognized the new Republican era, and which in reality was the ultimate reason why the Clinton economy became ultimately successful.

Democrats were wiped out in 1994 as Republicans swept into power when Americans became fed up with Democrat incompetence and massive spending.  And Bill Clinton was wise enough to recognize the handwriting on the wall.  As a result, he transitioned into a fiscal moderate and avoided the fate of his party.

But now the man who recognized that “The era of big government is over” is back to his pre-1994 ways.  Bill Clinton has joined Barack Obama with the very same big spending, big government socialistic mindset that brought the Democrats to such historic disaster in 1994.

There are many things we can do to improve our health care system.  That goes without saying.  But the Democrat’s presentation that opposing their system is opposing “change” or “reform” is simply asinine.  If any change is better than our present course, than we should just nuke ourselves and be done with it: that would be “change,” after all.  We need to recognize that there is good reform and there is bad reform – and government-run health care is simply “bad” reform.

ObamaCare suffers from massive policy problems that go right to the heart of the greater debate surrounding the size of government, the size of Obama’s unprecedented deficits, and the unsustainable size of our debt.  Democrats have a real problem explaining how they are going to spend $1.6 trillion and yet bring down costs – especially given the CBO’s damning analysis.  They have a problem explaining how they’re going to take hundreds of millions out of Medicare and yet not affect the quality of care to Medicare beneficiaries.  And they have a problem explaining how they’re not going to end up transferring over a hundred million Americans out of their employee-based health care and into the “public option” when good analysis sees exactly that happening (and see also here).

The American people listened to Obama fearmonger his way to the gigantic stimulus package that will ultimately cost Americans $3.27 trillion.  The stimulus has been deemed by the American people as being so unsuccessful that fully 72% of Americans now say “returning the unused portion of the $787 billion dollar stimulus to taxpayers would do more to boost the economy than having the government spend it.”  People are turning against what they increasingly recognize as big government socialism.

Obama_Economy_Pork-debt

We need to STOP health care “reform” until it includes tort reform such as loser pays, until it includes an end to state and federal mandates, until it includes allowing our 1300 private insurance companies to compete across state lines.  And we need to STOP health care “reform” until it EXCLUDES giving full medical coverage to more than 12 million illegal immigrants, until it excludes “public options,” excludes “Co-Ops,” and excludes any other device that becomes a backdoor guarantee to government health care.

Democrat’s Government Health Care Will Increase, NOT Decrease, Costs

July 19, 2009

We don’t have any idea how expensive Obama care will truly be.  You can bet your britches – and you may end up actually being forced to BET your britches – that it will cost a whopping load more than advertised.

First, some figures to show the invariable tendency of the government to dramatically underestimate the cost of its own programs:

- 2009 (January) CBO estimated that the bailout TARP plan would cost taxpayers $189 billion; instead, several weeks later the estimated cost was raised to $356 billion, and will eventually be much more by end of 2009.

- 1965 CBO estimated that Medicare Pt. A cost would be $9 billion by 1990; instead the cost was $66 billion in 1990.  They were wrong by a mere 633%.  Today the costs have exploded so incredibly that no one’s even bothering to go back now and try to figure out just how terribly wrong the forecasters truly were.

1965 CBO estimated that all (Part A plus Part B) Medicare cost would be $12 billion by 1990; instead the cost was $107 billion in 1990, and today it has a stratospheric total unfunded liability of $61.6 trillion.  Oops.

1987 CBO estimated that subsidy for Medicaid special hospitals would be $100 million by 1992; instead the cost was $11 billion in 1992There’s a nice 10,900% cost markup for you.  Better luck next time.

1988 CBO estimated that Medicaid homecare cost would be $4 billion by 1983; instead the cost was $10 billion in 1983.  But don’t worry; it’s only money.  And being off by a mere 150% is actually quite excellent by the “close enough for government work” mindset.

2003 White House estimate of Iraq War cost would be $60 billion; instead the cost so far has exceeded $600 billion.  Oh, well, if at first you don’t succeed, there’s always Afghanistan to screw up too.

Maybe you’d better sit down for this shocker: The U.S. government controls its costs the way Monty Python’s famous Mr. Creosote controlled his weight:

And like Mr. Creosote, it will be that extra tiny little bit of spending that finally causes the U.S. treasury to explode in a gory death.  Instead of the mint that blows up Mr. Creosote, it will be a dollar bill that blows up the U.S. government.

So when you hear the arguments over how much Obama’s health care “reform” will cost, realize that it isn’t a matter of whether it will cost $1 trillion, or $1.5 trillion, or $3.5 trillion; it’s a matter of whether it will cost one of those numbers times a factor of at least 10 or more.

The $1.5 trillion figure, which is currently being thrown around, is enough of a sticker shocker even without the realization that it will actually end up costing far, far more that even Democrats – fearing losing their seats – are beginning to bail out of it.

Still, the worse the plan looks, the faster Barack Obama wants it passed, before people know what a lemon they bought.  Obama has been claiming that we must immediately pass health care “reform” in order to save money in future years.  He has pounded away with that message again and again.

But that message is a complete lie.

Allow me to introduce Doug Elmendorf, the director of the Congressional Budget Office.  And allow me to cite an article by Rick Moran from Pajama’s Media to describe the truly dire situation we face, and which we are ignoring to our literal peril:

ObamaCare Gets a Red Light from Congressional Budget Office

The Democrats’ plan not only won’t save a dime, it will cost us billions over the next decade. (Also see PJTV: Nationwide Protests Target ObamaCare)

Doug Elmendorf, director of the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, was testifying before the Senate Budget Committee yesterday when he dropped a bombshell on the gathering that put a whole new spin on the effort by the Obama administration to reform the health care system.

The exchange with Democrat Kent Conrad was a shocker:

Conrad: Dr. Elmendorf, I am going to really put you on the spot because we are in the middle of this health care debate, but it is critically important that we get this right. Everyone has said, virtually everyone, that bending the cost curve over time is critically important and one of the key goals of this entire effort. From what you have seen from the products of the committees that have reported, do you see a successful effort being mounted to bend the long-term cost curve?

Elmendorf: No, Mr. Chairman. In the legislation that has been reported we do not see the sort of fundamental changes that would be necessary to reduce the trajectory of federal health spending by a significant amount. And on the contrary, the legislation significantly expands the federal responsibility for health care costs.

Conrad: So the cost curve in your judgment is being bent, but it is being bent the wrong way. Is that correct?

Elmendorf: The way I would put it is that the curve is being raised, so there is a justifiable focus on growth rates because of course it is the compounding of growth rates faster than the economy that leads to these unsustainable paths. But it is very hard to look out over a very long term and say very accurate things about growth rates. So most health experts that we talk with focus particularly on what is happening over the next 10 or 20 years, still a pretty long time period for projections, but focus on the next 10 or 20 years and look at whether efforts are being made that are bringing costs down or pushing costs up over that period.

As we wrote in our letter to you and Senator Gregg, the creation of a new subsidy for health insurance, which is a critical part of expanding health insurance coverage in our judgment, would by itself increase the federal responsibility for health care that raises federal spending on health care. It raises the amount of activity that is growing at this unsustainable rate and to offset that there has to be very substantial reductions in other parts of the federal commitment to health care, either on the tax revenue side through changes in the tax exclusion or on the spending side through reforms in Medicare and Medicaid.

Elmendorf made additional news yesterday by scaring the hell out of everyone when he released the latest CBO report on the long-term budget outlook that, in technical terms, says that we are in very big trouble:

Under current law, the federal budget is on an unsustainable path, because federal debt will continue to grow much faster than the economy over the long run. Although great uncertainty surrounds long-term fiscal projections, rising costs for health care and the aging of the population will cause federal spending to increase rapidly under any plausible scenario for current law. Unless revenues increase just as rapidly, the rise in spending will produce growing budget deficits. Large budget deficits would reduce national saving, leading to more borrowing from abroad and less domestic investment, which in turn would depress economic growth in the United States. Over time, accumulating debt would cause substantial harm to the economy. …

Measured relative to GDP, almost all of the projected growth in federal spending other than interest payments on the debt stems from the three largest entitlement programs — Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security. For decades, spending on Medicare and Medicaid has been growing faster than the economy. CBO projects that if current laws do not change, federal spending on Medicare and Medicaid combined will grow from roughly 5 percent of GDP today to almost 10 percent by 2035. By 2080, the government would be spending almost as much, as a share of the economy, on just its two major health care programs as it has spent on all of its programs and services in recent years.

This double dose of doom has made absolutely no impact on Capitol Hill. Three House committees seem ready to report out a $1.5 trillion health care reform measure while the Senate Finance Committee appears close to a bipartisan deal on how to fund it — this, despite the fact that the CBO chief has told them there is no way to pay for it.

It is like being in a bad dream where there’s a fire in a room where a dinner party is being held and you’re the only one who notices. Everyone else is still playing cards, eating, or sitting around having witty conversations, all the while the fire laps closer and closer.

But it’s not a nightmare and lawmakers really are ignoring the fire. Elmendorf doesn’t come up with these projections to amuse himself and the wonks at CBO. He has outlined a recipe for catastrophe that will eventually make the United States a second rate economic power, not to mention impoverish the population.

The president and Democrats have been pitching this plan as a cost-saving measure. The president especially has been warning that we have to pass this reform bill quickly in order to get control of the spiraling deficits grimly outlined in Elmendorf’s long-term budget outlook.

But Elmendorf is saying that we can’t get there from here, that the numbers being used by Democrats to close the gap between what the bill will cost and how they plan to pay for it are simply not adding up.

There is another aspect to this reform measure that few are talking about: history. Every single entitlement program ever created by the federal government has cost the taxpayer more than advertised — in some cases, astronomically more.

Medicare is a perfect example. When the program was created in 1965, it cost taxpayers around $3 billion. At that time, the House Ways and Means Committee estimated that Medicare would cost $12 billion by 1990 — and that number was adjusted for a predicted rate of inflation. The actual cost of the program in 1990 was $107 billion. And today, Medicare costs the U.S. taxpayer $440 billion.

At best, Congress is guessing. The fact is, no one knows how much this monstrosity is going to cost, no one knows how it is going to be paid for, and no one knows what effect it will have on the quality of care or on the private insurance industry.

The ideas being implemented are untried. And, unlike NASA testing a new rocket or the Air Force testing a new fighter where failure is expected, there is no room for error. However this thing works itself out, we are stuck with it. History is a telling guide here as well; there has never been an entitlement once created that was later rescinded.

Elmendorf’s testimony and budget outlook should be heeded. Yes, we need to reform the health care system — badly. But the Democrats’ plan is not the only game in town. There are many proposals left unexamined by the Democrats in their haste to give their president a triumph. The partisan nature of the debate, the deliberate closing off of alternatives that would cost far less and perhaps do as much as is being proposed, and the damnable rush to get it all done before anything is digested or weighed against the long term, is frightening.

The major justification for speed in passing this legislation just went out the window with Director Elmendorf’s admission that the health care reform bill will only add many billions to the record deficits we will already be running over the next decade. Is that reason enough to slow down or even stop what the Congress is doing in order to think this thing through and try to come up with alternatives?

Not when it’s easier to ignore the fire lapping at your toes in order to grant a political victory to a president in trouble with the voters.

They say elections have consequences, and since the country voted for total Democrat control, we should let the Democrats have their shot.  That may be true.  But what we did as a nation in November was vote to slash our jugular veins, so that the blood of the entire nation (measured in the red ink of crippling debts) would gush out until we are left with less than a banana republic.

It is my sincerely held belief that those who truly understand the real picture are not telling us how truly bad things are, lest the people bring the nation down in one massively giant “bank run.”

Obama’s Economic Forecast: No Reality In Sight

July 16, 2009

Right on the heels of Wall Street analyst Meredith Whitney predicting 13% or higher unemployment, we are beginning to see mainstream media economic forecasters abandoning their “Isn’t Obama just wonderful” chant and wake up to smell reality.

I added my own frequently smarmy comments in brackets with the content in italics.

Experts: Obama Too Optimistic on Economy

Politico: Miscalculation Would Mean Much Higher Deficits Than the Administration Is Now Acknowledging

July 14, 2009

President Barack Obama’s economic forecasts for long-term growth are too optimistic, many economists warn, a miscalculation that would mean budget deficits will be much higher than the administration is now acknowledging.

The White House will be forced to confront the disconnect between its original, upbeat predictions and the mainstream consensus about how the economy is likely to perform in a new budget forecast to be unveiled next month.

Christina Romer, chairwoman of the White House’s Council of Economic Advisers, said in a POLITICO interview that the administration – like many independent economists – did not fully anticipate the severity and pace of this recession. She said the White House will be updating its official forecasts.  [Allow me to interject here that this now oft-repeated excuse is insane.  Obama personally and repeatedly fearmongered the economy by comparing it to the Great Depression.  And now he has the naked chutzpah to claim he didn’t realize it was actually bad?  That is completely INSANE].

The new numbers will come as part of a semiannual review that, under ordinary circumstances, is the kind of earnest-but-dull document that causes many Washington eyes to glaze over.

This time, however, the new forecasts – if they are anything like what many outside economists expect – could send a jolt through Capitol Hill, where even the administration’s current debt projections already are prompting deep concerns on political and substantive grounds.

Higher deficit figures also would arrive at a critical moment in the health care debate, as lawmakers are already struggling to find a way to pay for the president’s nearly $1 trillion reform package.

Alternately, if Obama clings to current optimistic forecasts for long-term growth, he risks accusations that he is basing his fiscal plans on fictitious assumptions – precisely the sort of charge he once leveled against the Bush administration.

White House officials rebuff such suggestions, saying the midyear correction is precisely intended to keep their economic program reality based.

But a series of POLITICO interviews in recent days with independent economists of varied political stripes found widespread disdain for Obama’s first round of assumptions, with some experts invoking such phrases as “rosy” and “fantasy.”

Obama’s current forecasts envision 3.2 percent growth next year, 4 percent growth in 2011, 4.6 percent growth in 2012 and 4.2 percent growth in 2013.

The administration is already under intense pressure over its economic calculations on the most politically sensitive statistic: employment. The administration once vowed to use stimulus policies to keep the jobless rate below 8 percent; it is now just shy of 10 percent.

Deficit figures do not pack the same emotional punch as unemployment lines do. But they matter greatly to policymakers and the financial markets as a measure of whether the country can afford Obama’s big agenda.

And the general public is paying attention, too.

In a June NBC/Wall Street Journal poll, a bare majority – 51 percent – of respondents approved of Obama’s handling of the economy, down from 56 percent in February.

In addition, 58 percent said the president and Congress should focus on keeping deficits down, even if that delays an economic recovery, the poll found.

“They used a rosy forecast, and that’s understandable because a quick recovery makes the rest of the agenda possible. It creates the basis for the revenues you need for health care and climate change,” said Robert Shapiro, a former Clinton economic adviser.

“But it’s also dangerous and risky because if the forecast doesn’t come true, you’ve undermined the basis for the rest of your policies,” he added.

White House officials note that at the time of their forecasting, the depth of the crisis was less clear. For instance, the global reach of the downturn wasn’t fully apparent late last fall.

Another challenge was that the slowdown “was going from a relatively normal recession into something much worse, and we were at a pivot point, if not a turning oint,” Romer said.

“There was just inherently a lot of uncertainty. None of us has a crystal ball, especially at a time when there is a lot of new information coming in. That’s when you have to be ready to update. That’s certainly what a lot of forecasters have done and what we will do, as well,” she added.

[In response to the last three paragraphs let me say this: I have been predicting economic calamity for nearly a YEAR now if Obama got elected, and I have been citing expert sources in every single one of those articles to support my claim.  One of my “favorite” predictions came in October 8 – obviously well BEFORE Obama claimed unemployment would not rise above 8% if his stimulus package was enacted.  CEO’s predicted that “some of Obama’s programs would bankrupt the country within three years, if implemented.” Romer’s “crystal ball” stuff is just garbage, just as her “Nobody knew it would be bad” line – and frankly just as her bogus economic forecasting].

Those outside forecast adjustments have been almost universally in a downward trend.

White House officials began to lay the groundwork for the politically ill-timed revisions when Vice President Joe Biden recently conceded the administration had “misread” the economic indicators in January about how bad the economy actually was.

Obama later amended those remarks, saying the White House had “incomplete” information, which led to their miscalculations.

Either way, those admissions appear to pave the way for a significant rewrite of the White House’s economic outlook, starting with it growth predictions.

“Those numbers will prove to be much, much too optimistic,” said J.D. Foster, a former economic adviser in the Bush administration.

To appreciate the potential problems that can arise once those numbers are changed, consider this:

The White House projected revenues for 2012 are forecast at $3.1 trillion. But if growth is just 2 percent, rather than around 4 percent, as some economists now expect, that income would hover around $2.4 trillion – adding another $700 billion to the projected deficit of $581 billion.

“That would be a significant change in the deficit,” said Foster, who did the math.

There is a case for hewing close to the administration’s original, out-year conclusions, said some economists.

The president’s hope for a burst of new economic activity around “green” jobs in the energy and environment sectors and the kick-in of the infrastructure phase of the stimulus package could provide some healthy growth, economists say.

“The question is, what will drive the growth? It’s not likely to be the housing market or another tech bubble. We don’t know what it is going to be, but it doesn’t make sense to assume it won’t be anything,” said James Horney, an economist with the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.

Still, it’s not clear whether another optimistic outlook will sell on Capitol Hill.

Mark Zandi, chief economist for Moody’s Economy.com and a frequent adviser to Capitol Hill, said the worsening economic picture makes passage of health care reform even more essential.  [Which is like handing a man in a free fall an anvil instead of a parachute in terms of economic sense.  We're reeling at the prospect of massive deficits, so let's add another trillion - and probably several trillion - to our deficit in the name of erasing our deficit].

“It’s so important for policymakers to show that they will address the long-term fiscal pressures on the economy and budget very, very soon,” he said, including the rising costs of Medicare and Medicaid that are overwhelming the federal budget.  [Medicare has a $61.6 trillion unfunded liability and is expected to bankrupt us by 2019, so let’s push for more government health care so we can be even more truly screwed than we already are].

The key for outside investors, he said, is “to see if policymakers credibly pay for it.” If Congress does it right, “that could be quite a positive thing” by boosting U.S. credibility in the world markets that are financing the nation’s debt.  [IF... IF...  If winged monkeys flew out of my butt on command, I could get a good job at the circus].

Roger C. Altman, another former Clinton economic adviser, recently suggested in a Wall Street Journal column that Congress move aggressively on health care reform and Social Security – both fixes that could ease deficit pressures.  [Just remember that when George Bush attempted to reform Social Security, Democrats demonized him for it].

“Public anxiety over deficits may make this fix [of Social Security funding] possible now, even though it has been elusive for years,” he said.

But Peter Morici, a University of Maryland economist, said the White House should set aside major domestic initiatives and focus on stabilizing the economy by attacking the trade deficit.

“The spending required for health care, the tax on business with a [climate change] cap-and-trade system, and the wasteful spending inside the stimulus will finish the job that the Chinese mercantilism began,” he said. “We’re headed for a disaster here.”

Go slow is also Shapiro’s guidance, suggesting a phased-in approach to any universal health care insurance program, which would delay its full costs.

Almost all of the economists interviewed – including former Bush White House officials – were sympathetic to the Obama economic team’s plight.

Its January forecasts didn’t deviate sharply back, then, from most other predictions by established and respected economic experts.

The Congressional Budget Office, for instance, predicted growth in 2012 of 4.4 percent, compared with the White House’s 4.6 percent.

But some worry the administration now is on the verge of making another mistake by inadequately addressing the next big threat: inflation fears.

No one can predict when that day will come, but many think now that it will be sooner rather than later.

When it does come, the Federal Reserve Bank will face a Hobson’s choice, said Morici: either runaway inflation or higher interest rates, both of which could stall a recovery and send the economy back into recession.

The Fed’s decision to pump money into the economy to stave off disaster in the financial sector and elsewhere last year was understandable, said Foster.

“But a price must be paid for what they did,” he added, and that means withdrawing that liquidity from the market to combat inflation. “In this case, the amount of liquidity to be withdrawn is unprecedented,” he added.

Zandi doesn’t dismiss Foster’s scenario, but he said it’s possible the country could get through inflation scares without as much damage.

“I think policymakers will do roughly the right thing with health care reform and get a reasonably credible package from a fiscal perspective,” he said.

“Then the current stimulus will be reasonably sufficient to push us out of recession later this year and into early recovery,” he added.

Republicans predicted that the “stimulus” wouldn’t “stimulate” and that the pork-laden package would fail, just as they also forecasted that the funds wouldn’t get out in time to do any good.  It’s funny how the media – which never listens to anything conservatives have to say anyway – are allowing the Obama administration to present the lie that “no one knew the economy would be this bad under our messianic governance.”

Personally, I keep going back to Gerald Celente, the Trends Research CEO who predicts food riots and tax revolts by 2012.  I see him making a lot more sense, rather than less, every single day.  And I don’t doubt for a second that liberals will mock such forecasts even as the riots and revolts erupt around them.

For the record, you can tell – given the complete lack of mention of “defense” or “the military” – that both are going to suffer greatly as Obama scrounges for funds to pay for his massive socialist agenda.

Obama’s Vs. Bush’s Deficit In One Truly Scary Picture

July 15, 2009

Want to see something really scary?

Stop and think about this picture.  Realize that Democrats – who are and have been demagogues in every sense of the word – repeatedly positioned themselves as the party of fiscal responsibility against Bush spending.

And then the moment they get the chance – from the very first nanosecond – they blow up the budget deficit the way terrorists blew up the World Trade Center towers.

And, before anyone object to the comparison to terrorism, let me clarify myself even further.  Terrorists can only do so much damage.  What Obama did to the federal budget dwarfs anything terrorists could have done to us.  The commander-in-chief of the most powerful nation in history has declared total war on fiscal responsibility.  It’s actually woefully inadequate to compare what Obama did to the budget to a mere terrorist attack.

The Heritage Foundation introduces the discussion this way:

President Barack Obama has repeatedly claimed that his budget would cut the deficit by half by the end of his term. But as Heritage analyst Brian Riedl has pointed out, given that Obama has already helped quadruple the deficit with his stimulus package, pledging to halve it by 2013 is hardly ambitious. The Washington Post has a great graphic which helps put President Obama’s budget deficits in context of President Bush’s.

Let me put it another way: Suppose I punch you in the mouth 100 times, sending you to the hospital on life support with a face that will never again be the same no matter how many reconstructive plastic surgeries you have.  Would it make you feel better if I told you that – next time around – I’d only punch you in the mouth fifty times?

The man who exploded a nation’s debt in a way never before seen in the entire history of the human  species is poising himself to take credit for his fiscal responsibility by only exploding it half as much as his initial nuclear blast.  And we’re actually supposed to be grateful for it!

It needs to be mentioned that this is just the spending Obama has proposed in the first 6 months of his term along with the forecasted trends that spending will entail.  It only stands to reason that the actual future spending will only increase, and these already truly terrifying numbers will only get worse over the next few years.  We literally aint seen nothin’ yet.

The generally reliably liberal Washington Post has said this:

President Obama’s ambitious plans to cut middle-class taxes, overhaul health care and expand access to college would require massive borrowing over the next decade, leaving the nation mired far deeper in debt than the White House previously estimated, congressional budget analysts said yesterday.

In the first independent analysis of Obama’s budget proposal, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office concluded that Obama’s policies would cause government spending to swell above historic levels even after costly programs to ease the recession and stabilize the nation’s financial system have ended.

Tax collections, meanwhile, would lag well behind spending, producing huge annual budget deficits that would force the nation to borrow nearly $9.3 trillion over the next decade — $2.3 trillion more than the president predicted when he unveiled his budget request just one month ago.

Although Obama would come close to meeting his goal of cutting in half the deficit he inherited by the end of his first term, the CBO predicts that deficits under his policies would exceed 4 percent of the overall economy over the next 10 years, a level White House budget director Peter R. Orszag yesterday acknowledged would “not be sustainable.”

The result, according to the CBO, would be an ever-expanding national debt that would exceed 82 percent of the overall economy by 2019 — double last year’s level — and threaten the nation’s financial stability.

“This clearly creates a scenario where the country’s going to go bankrupt. It’s almost that simple,” said Sen. Judd Gregg (N.H.), the senior Republican on the Senate Budget Committee, who briefly considered joining the Obama administration as commerce secretary. “One would hope these numbers would wake somebody up,” Gregg said.

Probably not, given that we are a ship of fools captained by the worst fool in American history.

You know what is interesting?  Look at what the Democrats said against Bush’s – now in historical context against Obama’s - incredibly tiny deficits (you DO realize that Bush’s deficits virtually amount to a rounding error compared to Obama’s massive ocean of red ink, don’t you?).  From the Left Coaster:

CBO Budget Deficit Estimates Too Low-Dems Attack Bush

After the Congressional Budget Office officially issued the staggering news of $400+ billion deficits for this year and next, the Democratic candidates on the campaign trail in unison hit Bush hard today on his fiscal mismanagement. Several even got in some good lines while doing so. [...]

Those figures prompted criticism from Democrats, such as Howard Dean, who has called for a repeal of Bush’s tax cuts. “The president has not only destroyed three million jobs, he is destroying the financial future of our children with these crazy tax cuts for the top 1 percent,” the former Vermont governor said in a telephone interview.

“It’s obvious this administration doesn’t have the slightest clue about how to get this economy back on track, get Americans back to work and get our nation’s finances under control,” said Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts, who added, “it is time to admit what millions of unemployed Americans already know – that the economic policies of George W. Bush are the worst in our nation’s history.”

Said Sen. Joe Lieberman of Connecticut: “The tide of red ink is rising higher than ever before. And the best George W. Bush can do is ask the American people to hold their breath. That’s unfair to our kids and unacceptable for our economic health.”

John Edwards, a senator from North Carolina, said the record deficits indicate it’s time to say “enough of the unaffordable tax breaks for corporations and the wealthy … and enough of pretending that deficits just don’t matter.”

Rep. Dick Gephardt of Missouri, cited the deficits as well as job losses as proof that the president’s “tax-cut economic policy is failing, it’s not helping ordinary taxpayers.”  [...]

But the best line of the day came from Bob Graham.

Sen. Bob Graham of Florida, in a variation of a line from John F. Kennedy’s inaugural address, said Bush “is telling the world that Americans shall defer any price, unload any burden on our children, postpone any hardship for ourselves to give tax cuts to the wealthiest Americans.” [...]

There are three items from the CBPP analysis that should be in the Democrats’ line of attack next year: [...]

In other words, two-thirds of the $10 trillion deterioration is a direct result of actions taken by George W. Bush. [...]

If the Democrats cannot win an election on those issues, then frankly the country deserves what it gets. These are George Bush’s deficits, and the voters need to be reminded of that every day between now and next November.

For the record, unemployment was 4.4% in 2006 when Nancy Pelosi and Democrats took over the House and Harry Reid and Democrats took over the Senate.  And the Dow was close to 12,000.  But, apparently, total Democrat control of the House and the Senate somehow still never translated into any kind of Democrat responsibility for the slide that only began after they took power over Congress.

Democrats – being demagogues – repeatedly blamed the deficits on the Bush tax cuts (because it enrages them that the American people should be allowed to keep more of the money that they earn).  But the reality is actually quite straightforward, as the Wall Street Journal evidences:

Tax rate reductions increase tax revenues. This truth has been proved at both state and federal levels, including by President Bush’s 2003 tax cuts on income, capital gains and dividends. Those reductions have raised federal tax receipts by $785 billion, the largest four-year revenue increase in U.S. history.

Liberals cannot even allow for the possibility that tax cuts might generate more revenue.  So – as the following New York Times article exemplifies – they must be perennially surprised when tax cuts create larger tax revenue by stimulating more investment.  It simply astonishes liberals that if government allows me to keep more of what I produce, that I might be inspired to try to produce even more.

“For the first time since President Bush took office, an unexpected leap in tax revenue is about to shrink the federal budget deficit this year, by nearly $100 billion.

On Wednesday, White House officials plan to announce that the deficit for the 2005 fiscal year, which ends in September, will be far smaller than the $427 billion they estimated in February.”

It wasn’t Bush’s tax cuts that created deficits; they clearly RAISED revenues, rather than lowered them.  What created the deficits was massive spending (on 9/11, on Iraq, on Afghanistan, on Katrina, on the huge Bush Medicare drug benefit, etc. etc.).

Massive spending.  You know, like Obama is doing now – ONLY A HELL OF A LOT WORSE THAN ANYONE IN HUMAN HISTORY HAS EVER EVEN CONTEMPLATED BEFORE.

But let’s put blame where blame belongs: Presidents are responsible for deficits.  As Democrats repeatedly pointed out.  Which is why any fair-minded Democrat (as though there actually were any) should be screaming in rage at the Obama insanity.

Now we see what massive hypocrites and incompetents Democrats truly are.  They didn’t scream at Bush’s deficits because they wanted fiscal responsibility; they only demagogued an issue for rhetorical benefit.  They falsely positioned themselves as the party of fiscal responsibility – which was a joke even before Barack Obama came along and demonstrated it for the sickest and most twisted joke ever told.

As a conservative, I DO criticize the huge deficits under George Bush.  And I apply that same “fiscal responsibility” lens on Obama and see the worst economic manager in the history of the world.

As Economy Continues Toward Toilet Bowl, Don’t Forget True Cost Of Failed Stimulus

June 26, 2009

There is increasing evidence mounting that Barack Obama’s $787 billion stimulus bill (the euphemistically-titled “American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009″ as opposed to “The Porkulus Act of 2009″ or “The Generational Theft Act of 2009) has utterly failed to deliver anything that Obama promised.

As I reported in my article, “Obama Wreckovery Act And Stimulus ‘Employment’: The Pathetic Reality,” it has utterly failed to produce jobs.  In rushing the bill through Congress when unemployment was at 7.2%, Obama promised the country something that is now laughable: his administration assured America that the economic stimulus would prevent unemployment from rising above 8 percent.” It is now over 9.4%, and is expected to enter double-digit territory before the end of the year.

At the time that Obama was arguing that we needed a stimulus plan to avert total disaster, and assuring the country that his stimulus plan would keep unemployment under 8%, the Congressional Budget Office said that unemployment would only go to 9% by 2010 if we did absolutely nothing.  Which is another way of saying that not only has Obama’s stimulus not helped, but it has actually HURT the economy:

New jobless claims jump unexpectedly to 627,000; continuing claims rise to 6.74 million

By Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer
On Thursday June 25,The Labor Department data released Thursday show jobs remain scarce even as the economy shows some signs of recovering from the longest recession since World War II.

The department said initial claims for jobless benefits rose last week by 15,000 to a seasonally adjusted 627,000. Economists expected a drop to 600,000, according to Thomson Reuters.

Several states reported more claims than expected from teachers, cafeteria workers and other school employees, a department analyst said.

The number of people continuing to receive unemployment insurance rose by 29,000 to 6.74 million, slightly above analysts’ estimates of 6.7 million.

To make it even more laughable, many of the very jobs that Barrack Obama had heralded as “saved” – including private sector jobs at Caterpillar and government sector jobs at the Columbus, Ohio police department – are the ones being wiped out.

But even though Obama’s stimulus has hurt the economy, it doesn’t change the fact that we’re still going to have to pay the bill for it.

And that bill WON’T be for $787 billion; it will be for $3.27TRILLION.

Stimulus Verdict: A $3.27 Trillion Porker

By: David A. Patten     February 14, 2009

The gargantuan stimulus bill Congress has rubber-stamped with virtually no Republican support contains tens of billions of the very spending projects that made the legislation a lightning rod for criticism.

And although the bill is generally described as costing $787 billion, the Congressional Budget Office reports the actual figure is now closer to $3.27 trillion.

That stems from the $744 billion it will take to pay for the additional debt the legislation will create, and $2.527 trillion in increased spending from the new and expanded programs the bill will spawn over the next decade.

The bill now spans more than 1,000 pages. While Democrats removed some provisions that fiscal conservatives objected to, most of the pork remains. Among them:

  • The plan has more than $3 billion in “neighborhood stabilization” and Community Development Block Grant funding, much of which may go to benefit ACORN, a low-income housing and voter registration “community” organization that is under federal investigation for its suspicious voter registration practices.
  • $1.3 billion to bailout AMTRAK, the perennial money-loser railroad.
  • $1 billion for educational programs, including courses on sexually transmitted diseases.
  • $30 million for restoration of wetlands to be spent in the San Francisco Bay Area – House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s district. The money will go in part to protect the endangered salt marsh harvest mouse.
  • $200 million for a low-pollution, coal-fired power plant in President Barack Obama’s home state of Illinois.
  • $45 million for ATV four-wheeler trails, and government office renovations, according to RNC Chairman Michael Steele.
  • $200 million to provide computers to community colleges.
  • $50 million for the National Endowment of the Arts.
  • Over $650 million in coupons to help consumers buy digital TV converter-box coupons.
  • A reported $300 million for hybrid vehicles and electric-powered cars. According to the Washington Times, this item will include buying golf carts for federal workers.GOP Sen. John McCain summed up his view of the bill: “This measure is not bipartisan. It contains much that is not stimulative.”Some of the criticisms of the bill, however, center on policy rather than cost.The Heritage Foundation, for example, reports the bill reverses the bipartisan welfare reforms achieved during the Clinton administration.Also, opponents have slammed the bill for being “anti-religious,” because it expressly prohibits the use of stimulus funds for faith-based schools, schools of divinity, facilities used for “sectarian worship,” or places of religious worship.
  • Heritage Foundation has an image of the CBO’s scoring:

    So while the media continues to report “$787 billion stimulus” to mask the actual devastating cost of this mess, in point of fact we’re not talking about a colossal $787 billion boondoggle; we’re talking about a mega-colossal $3.27 trillion boondoggle.

    There are a whole lot of questions about whether Obama is creating any jobs with his massive government spending (beyond his fairy tale “saved” jobs that the US Bureau of Labor Statistics has said can’t be verifiedand can you even imagine the mainstream media allowing President George Bush to hype job numbers that he couldn’t verify???), but there is no question at all that the trillions of dollars being spent are all-too-real. And there is no question that a great big giant lead anvil will fall on the US economy due to the near doubling of the national debt as Obama adds a projected $9.3 trillion to the $11.7 trillion hole we’re already in (which doesn’t count the tens of trillions of dollars in unfunded mandates from Social Security, Medicare, etc).  Obama is borrowing 50 cents on the dollar as he explodes the federal deficit by spending four times more than Bush spent in 2008 and in the process “adding more to the debt than all presidents — from George Washington to George Bush – combined.” And most terrifying of all, Obama’s spending will cause debt to double from 41% of GDP in 2008 to a crushing 82% of GDP in 2019.

    What will be the result of all this insane spending, and not very far off? A quote from a CNS News story should awaken anyone who thinks the future will be rosy:

    By 2019, the CBO said, a whopping 82 percent of the nation’s gross domestic product (GDP) will go to pay down the national debt. This means that in future years, the government could owe its creditors more than the goods and services that the entire economy can produce.

    Now you have to add to that the fact that the Democrats are pushing a $3.5 TRILLION health care bill that will socialize – on top of a big chunk of the economy that already HAS been socialized (e.g. banks, auto companies) a further 1/6th of the US economy.

    And you have to add in the staggering future costs to our economy that will be imposed by the Waxman-Markey (or as I prefer to call it, the Wackjob-Marxist) cap-and-trade bill that will result in capping productivity and trading away our prosperity: $6,800 per family of four by 2035, even as our energy costs skyrocket (or to quote Obama himself: Under my plan of a cap and trade system, electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket).  And as energy costs (and therefore production) increase dramatically, do you think employers will hire more workers, or fewer and fewer?

    All that staggering hyperinflation-creating debt-funded government spending, along with the simultaneous nationalization of our economy and the systemic undermining of our productivity, and about the only jobs that are being created are for washing cars and running errands for politically-connected Democrats.

    By the time the American people understand what has happened to their economy and to their way of life, it’s going to be too late to undo the damage that will have been done.


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