I find myself not too happy with Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) today. It appears that on Wednesday he went on to the liberal talk radio show of Bill Press and said?
BILL PRESS:? Alright, well good for you. You know, we gotta work on that, because they are just shutting down progressive talk from one city after another. All we want is, you know, some balance on the airwaves, that’s all. You know, we’re not going to take any of the conservative voices off the airwaves, but just make sure that there are a few progressives and liberals out there, right?
SENATOR TOM HARKIN (D-IA): Exactly, and that’s why we need the fair — that’s why we need the Fairness Doctrine back.
Posts Tagged ‘Budget’
Many congressional Republicans as well as GOP talking heads like Rush Limbaugh, Newt Gingrich, and Fox ?News? pundits Sean Hanity and Glenn Beck, have often made the claim that President Obama has spent more money than any President in history.
When President Clinton left office the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), had estimated a surplus in 2001 of about $800 Billion dollars. So where did it all go?
New York Times writer David Leonhardt took on this topic Tuesday and the results might actually surprise you.
You can think of that roughly $2 trillion swing as coming from four broad categories: the business cycle, President George W. Bush?s policies, policies from the Bush years that are scheduled to expire but that Mr. Obama has chosen to extend, and new policies proposed by Mr. Obama.
The first category ? the business cycle ? accounts for 37 percent of the $2 trillion swing. It?s a reflection of the fact that both the 2001 recession and the current one reduced tax revenue, required more spending on safety-net programs and changed economists? assumptions about how much in taxes the government would collect in future years.
The President and congress have been working on getting an $85 Billion dollar war spending bill passed. On Thursday the House approved the bill but added almost $12 Billion dollars in spending above and beyond what Obama asked for.
I understand what the first 85 Billion is for. Increased numbers of troops in Afghanistan requires money for transportation, supplies, and infrastructure to maintain them. Money is also needed to continue operations in Iraq.
So what does this extra 12 Billion get us?
First of all, they added an extra $2.2 Billion in foreign aid, above and beyond that of what the president asked for. Why is congresses added more money to foreign aid than what the president wants? I don?t see any reason for it.
Second, $4 Billion of it goes to the purchase of military equipment, including the C-17 cargo planes that the Pentagon has stated it doesn?t need. Hello? If they don?t need them, why are we buying them?
This is the part that gets me. What gives congress the authority to tell the Pentagon that they have to buy these planes even if the Pentagon says they don?t need them? I understand that congress sets the budget, but shouldn?t it be the Pentagon that decides how the money is spent? I can even understand congress saying ok, here is this program for buying cargo planes, you have this much cash to do it with. Then if the Pentagon says they don?t need them or buys what they need, the left over money goes back to congress for other projects. It just doesn?t make sense that congress has the ability to say to the military, or any other government organization, that you have to buy this or that regardless of if you need it or not, that?s just wasteful. Why are we letting congress micromanage the checkbook?
Cross-posted on The Pajama Pundit
For some time now myself and others have been railing on the idea that the GOP has been simply fighting against the President?s plan for moving the country forward and fixing our economy without providing some sort of alternative to the President?s budget.
Today the GOP put out a Budget Alternative, or at least a blue-print for one. Maybe it?s a rough draft?