Archive for the ‘Spending’ Category

WELL, THE DEMOCRATS HAVE DONE IT AGAIN!

March 30, 2020

When it comes to wasting money and paying friends and donors, the Democrat party is the best. The last time they had the opportunity to do so on a grand scale was with the minuscule $787 billion taxpayer funded bailout know as TARP and signed by then president Obama. At that time we borrowed the money from countries around the globe; the primary note holder being China. We are still paying to reduce that obligation!

At that time, companies large and small held out their collective corporate hands, palms up, to receive respite funds from the taxpayers via the government. Many accepted the grants only to pay corporate executives huge bonuses before declaring bankruptcy that relieved them from repayment.

Probably the best known scandal of the time was Solyndra. The solar cell manufacturer received $535 million only to pay out millions in bonuses before shuttering their doors. The CEO said the “Regulatory and policy uncertainties made it impossible to raise capital to quickly rescue the operation.” I should think that $535 million in immediate funding would forestall some of the need for capital. Solyndra executives and shareholders had collectively donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to the Obama campaign and the DNC.

This time around, nobody can be blamed except President Trump for signing a horrendously expensive pork-laden bill. Granted, this time the urgency was greater, but none-the-less, to sign such frivolous spending into law is uncalled for. The $2.2 Trillion “Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act” (CARES Act), meant to provide for the sick and needy is so filled with socialist payouts it is hard to describe it as a recovery vehicle.

E.g. The Board of Directors for the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts decided their relief did not extend to members of their own sitting orchestra, The National Symphony Orchestra. The $25 million grant written into the bill was specifically “to cover operating expenses required to ensure the continuity including for employee compensation and benefits, grants, contracts, payments for rent or utilities, fees for artists or performers,” according to the law’s text. Within hours of the signing, however, the board notified the nearly 100 member symphony that they will no longer receive paychecks after April 3. <link>

Like Solyndra, they got their money from a Democrat controlled congress then allowed their “employees” the opportunity to draw down on more taxpayer funds, or, as it is more commonly known unemployment.

Since there is not a surplus of federal funds, the money will again be borrowed from, wait for it…CHINA.

President Obama increased the debt by $9 trillion over an eight year period, and conservatives complained. President Trump just increased the debt by $2.2 trillion in one fell swoop. Socialists are high-fiving and conservatives are nervous but otherwise complacent.

If a “Republican” president can do this to our country, what would another Marxist/socialist (read: progressive Democrat) do to it. Yes, this is a time of crisis and spending is a must. But what kind of a country are we leaving for the next and future generations if we allow congress to continue throwing money away in exchange for campaign donations?

PORK AND OTHER LEGISLATION BY-PRODUCTS

April 11, 2018

It’s simply amazing that we keep asking Congress or state officials to pass rules, laws and regulations to make our lives better. Every new law is written in such a way that the citizens lose something beyond the purpose of the command. Rarely are the laws meaningful to the problem or situation they attempt to address.

Staying away from the insanity of highly charged subjects of abortion or gun control for now, let us take an intelligent look at something simple that our elected officials have imposed upon us. Here I’d like to talk about the calorie labeling off-shoot mandate for fast food restaurants that was part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Each restaurant must now have a listing of the caloric content of their products.

I don’t hang out in fast food venues, but when I’m traveling I do occasionally use them for quick sustenance. When the PPACA was first enacted, I noticed a large sign – NUTRITION FACTS – over a brochure holder on a counter. The brochures had a full listing of the calories for all of the foods sold through that particular chain. After looking through one, I asked the manager how often someone picks up one of the information pieces. She laughed and said they put them out three weeks ago and haven’t had to refill the display yet. It was well over half full and that location served hundreds of customers per day.

Again, I don’t spend a lot of meal time in these places, but I have yet to see a slow speed waddler pick up one of the government mandated brochures. I seriously doubt that it would influence the salivation induced by the pictured bacon topped, double meat, double-cheese sandwich with a super sized side of deep fried reconstituted starch sticks and large carbonated sugar drink. *I have, however, heard people ask for a diet drink to make them feel better while gorging on the calorie laden, nutrition free, artery and colon clogger.

The initial cost to food chains was in the millions of dollars for research, government review, printing, distribution and displays. For what? To clutter the counter? To punish the food chains? The people who most need the information are the least likely to care about calorie counting just like people who choose to smoke aren’t influenced no matter how large the info is printed on a pack of individually rolled carcinogen sticks.

However, what you get when your Congressperson or Senator feels the need to solicit a donation from a vocal advocacy group within their constituency is legislation that hurts business, property owners or citizens in general. The elected representatives are able to hide their participation behind numbers of other legislators often in reciprocal sponsorship of likewise unnecessary legislation. Our representatives receive donations and other perks while we lose freedoms and liberties.

And that my friends is called PORK! That is how we got a 2,232 page $1.3 trillion budget that will fund our government for the next 6 months, through September 2018. Nobody bothered to read the bill other than to make sure their personal and political favors were properly implanted.

To be an effective leader, President Trump must take control of the rebellious hill dwellers as well as the rest of the embedded swamp creatures. Since he does not have line item veto power, he must short circuit the ridiculous process, even if it means vetoing all such legislation until Congress becomes reasonable and responsible. Giving away the farm to get one new cow is unacceptable.

CONGRATULATIONS, WE MADE IT! $20,000,000,000,000 DEBT

September 15, 2017

The national debt has finally reached the point of abject irresponsibility. The unpaid debt accumulated in the past decade exceeds that accrued over the 220 years between the Constitutional Convention and 2007. According to the U.S.Treasury <link> the total recorded debt on September 30, 2007 was $9,007,653,372,262.

Each citizen now owes approximately $61,900 to the country in addition to any personal debt. Each taxpayer has an individual obligation to the federal government in the amount of $168,000 (that is after normal taxes are removed from your income, interest and dividends).

Eh, a few billion here, a few billion there…What difference, at this point, does it make?

When an individual decides to accept debt in exchange for satisfaction of their needs or wants, he or she must generally provide collateral to the lender. That collateral might be in the form of a mortgage on their home or other real estate or a provision allowing the lender to access a portion of their income commensurate to not-less-than the amount of regular interest on that loan. Most frequently, the terms include the interest plus the termed pro-rata repayment of principal. In either or any case, the lender wants an assurance that the loan will be repaid.

No such requirement is made of governments.

When an individual or entity such as a company or corporation defaults on their debt, the courts may act on a declaration of bankruptcy and remove a portion or all of the existing debt. However, the borrower is obligated to offset as much of the debt as possible by liquidating physical assets and providing the proceeds to the court. That individual or entity must then resume life without. He, she or it must start from nothing with only a possible ongoing subsistence income to survive. Friends and family may choose to help out for a time, but eventually the particular debtor must assume the burden for their lives, livelihoods and actions.

If and when a federal government defaults on massive outstanding debt, their recourse is to take as much as necessary from the citizens therein to cover the obligation. That might mean converting our businesses, our real and personal property as well as our income and savings to cover the obligations made by our elected officials. We, as a citizens and taxpayers, have no choice at that point.

We had choices when we elected our presidents and representatives over time. We had the choice to re-elect or reject them. We allowed them to fritter the tax money we worked to earn. They did so in often irresponsible ways and against our wishes and principles. We allowed it. We created this problem. At the point of default, we have only us to blame.

That, my friends, is how Communism comes about. Once the government controls the economic infrastructure of a country, the citizens become chattel. Once the government has complete control over our lives and livelihoods, it is a long and tough fight to regain what we now have and complain about.

It is time to make some major changes. There is no longer a defining line between conservatives and liberals when it comes to government spending…it is all liberal spending. The line must be redrawn by making a rapid and colossal change to the failing congress and their process.

It is okay to have two (or more) parties with differing viewpoints offering input to policies and procedures for the nation. However they both, or all, must be reasonable and responsible for the decisions on which they arrive. There must be a cost/benefit analysis done, not just a cost analysis. The Congress must explore and debate the potential consequences of the laws and conclusions as well as the perceived benefits without indicting the opposition or depicting them as evil or insane. But we must accept the responsibility to elect sane and reasonable people to represent us.

Good luck handling your portion of the debt. *BTW, the median household income according to the New York Times on September 12, 2017 <link> is currently $59,039.

Just because a congressional candidate has a (D), (R), (L) or (I) behind his or her name doesn’t mean they always have you in mind when they spend your tax dollars. They, in fact, most often exempt themselves from accountability for inclusion in the laws they write no matter what affiliation they proclaim.

Our current president most likely falls into the Independent category. He is attempting to effect changes from the norm. However, the established and entrenched members of Congress, of all dispositions, are fighting him simply because he is not a homogeneous Washingtonian. They would rather scuff the toes of their wingtips kicking the can (National Debt) down the road rather than taking charge and disposing of it. It might be time to replace the whole team with members concerned for future generations.

 

IT’S TIME TO END THE CREDIT CARD SPENDING AND PAY THE BILLS

December 7, 2016

For just shy of eight years now the United States has been economically hindered by the distorted interpretation of economist John Maynard Keynes’ twentieth century economic theory. Application of Keynesian economics extended the Great Depression longer than necessary as it has for the recent recession.

Classic economic theory suggests that world and national economies experience rises and falls. Periods of stagnation can be moderated with reasoned spending and by controlling variable expenses. Keynesian economic theory, on the other hand, advocates that increased government spending in times of downturn spurs the economy resulting in shorter downswings. The flawed theory doesn’t work in a personal or household situation and it most certainly doesn’t work for individual states or nations. In fact, the larger the entity and economic platform the more incongruent the premise becomes.

Take the economic basis to the personal level for a moment. If you’re out of work, out of savings and your unemployment ends, your only legal choices are to live off your credit cards or borrow from friends and family to pay your bills. When you begin borrowing to continue spending more than you can repay, this is called deficit spending. Increasing that spending is simply beyond foolish. To continue this path without obtaining gainful employment or other legitimate income sources, severely limits your choices. When debt increases and money shuffling through borrowing and making minimum payments is no longer an option, selling your assets and bankruptcy become reality.

Governments have opportunities that individuals do not. They can print more money to cover their debt. You cannot. However, when the government prints more money, each one of your dollars, each one of your pennies is worth less. Therefore. it costs you proportionately more for groceries, clothing, gasoline, heating and cooling…everything. They can take more of your money in the form of taxes, levies, tolls, etc. You, on the other hand, have to make do with less or borrow more without concern for repayment.

For eight years now we have had a government that spends without concern for repaying the lenders. Congress is complicit, if not primarily responsible for repressing economic growth by allowing this to happen. Each bill passed with government spending appropriations only stagnates growth, indebts each American and prevents GDP increases.

It’s time to free the reins and allow the private sector to flourish. It shouldn’t matter if those at the top also benefit. Let them elevate their status as long as the rest of us increase ours!

Let’s treat the national economy as if it were a for-profit business we care about. Let’s stop the useless spending on studies to justify more spending. Let’s stop the deficit spending and begin reducing the debt. Let’s make government (agencies and departments, teachers, public works employees and everybody receiving taxpayer funded paychecks) accountable for performance. Let’s make public wages and salaries merit based.  Let’s downsize (or rightsize) the government and allow those non-critical employees an opportunity to contribute to the economy in the private sector rather than burdening it.

LET’S MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!

HOW TO BANKRUPT A COUNTRY

January 26, 2016

Over the past seven years, and even before that, the federal administrative bureaucracy has grown and grown. Now, you have another new agency to usurp your tax dollars and cause greater borrowing from our enemies – and I don’t mean just Hillary’s and Barack’s Republican opposition this time.

With the formation of each new federal entity, there is office space to be leased or purchased, desks and other furniture to fill the space.  There are people to hire, pay, allow expense accounts, provide health care for, and continue paying when they leave their post. Either they receive ongoing retirement pay or separation pay or both, but they still get paid after leaving the job.

This time it is the creation of the National Background Investigations Bureau (NBIB). The ineptness of the Federal Investigation Services (not to be confused with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, FBI) apparently didn’t have a large enough staff and management team to foolishly spend enough of your hard-earned money. Thus, $97 million more of your money is now going to an expanded but still ineffective and inept background check and data security agency.

Liberals never think in terms of streamlining, efficiency, accountability and responsibility. They only, and always, seek ways to spend more of your money and employ greater mediocrity.

Got a problem? Hey, that gives us the opportunity to add a new division or agency or bureaucratic offshoot with little oversight that’s even more intrusive.  We guarantee the new entity will only make your life more uncomfortable and more costly. We’ll give it a cool name that sounds like it may actually do something. Don’t fret though, we’ll keep the bumbling know-for-naughts employed that couldn’t do the job in the first place to make the unemployment numbers look better. In fact, we’ll hire more!

Pay attention now! This new taxpayer burden is in addition to Atty Gen. Loretta Lynch’s request for $80 million.  That money is to implement the invasive and unmanageable background checks that President Obama has deemed into existence by Executive Order.

Even with the new agency at full staffing with morning donuts and coffee provided, there is still no guarantee that unvetted “refugees” and illegal aliens from around the world will be properly scrutinized. Many illegal aliens and refugees are allowed to remain in the U.S. without the government verifying their full names, medical or global criminal history.

Two thousand more daydreaming, porn watching government pencil pushers will still authorize full citizenship benefits to 90% of the gang members, cartel bosses or psych ward escapees applying for federal positions or gun permits.  It will, however, take the U.S. one step closer to the financial meltdown we see in Greece and Italy.