Politics

RedState Morning Briefing

RedState Morning Briefing
For January 26, 2010

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1. A little reality check on the so-called “spending freeze”

Barack Obama will be announcing a “spending freeze” on discretionary spending during the State of the Union address. Pay close attention to the words: discretionary spending. The word on the street is that his request will exempt “the Pentagon, veterans programs, foreign aid and homeland security” from this so-called “freeze.” There are a couple of key items to consider:

  1. What exactly does he mean by “freeze?” Does it mean “freeze the level of spending at the bloated 2009 numbers”? Or does it mean “don’t increase these programs any more in 2010 than we did in 2009? Or does it mean “stick to historic growth levels, rather than Obama-caliber spending increases”? Inquiring minds want to know.
  2. Discretionary spending means non-entitlement spending. When you subtract out entitlements: Medicare & Social Security, and then you subtract defense-related spending, there is precious little left. In fact, it comes out to less than nineteen percent of the federal budget.* Barack Obama’s so-called “stimulus” program totaled around $750B – that’s almost 50% greater than the entire non-defense discretionary budget for 2009. Freezing 19% of the federal budget is a drop in the bucket. (see page 8 of this PDF)

Note one other key item in that Federal Budget PDF document. As of the year 2017, “Net Interest” – the interest paid on the national debt – exceeds ALL non-discretionary federal spending. If Barack Obama wanted to have a real impact on the federal budget, both now and in the future, he would cease and desist from these so-called “stimuli” that are doing little or nothing to fix the Obama Recession. To propose a spending freeze of any sort is good political theater for Obama, but it will have virtually no impact on the financial standing of the United States of America. Please click here for the rest of the post.

2. The Cold Heartedness of Bureaucracy

Remember how the Democrats vehemently denied both the existence of the death panels and the cold nature of the decision making processes that would be invoked to save money on health care? Well, then you should not be shocked to learn the Democrat leadership of the House of Representatives is prohibiting members of Congress from putting links to Haitian Relief efforts on their websites and encouraging donations to the Red Cross, Salvation Army, and other groups. But don’t worry. The House Democrats say it is permissible for members of Congress to link to the White House’s relief effort. Just not private sector charities. Please click here for the rest of the post.

3. No-Bid Barack

To varying degrees, every presidential candidate makes promises during the course of the campaign that the realities of governing eventually cause the winner to break. But never has the US seen a president like Barack Obama, whose broken campaign promises far outnumber his fulfilled ones. The list is seemingly endless: no lobbyists in the administration, closing Guantanamo Bay, a tax cut for 95% of Americans, a net reduction in federal spending, no new taxes for anyone making under $250,000, health care negotiations on C-SPAN, on and on. All broken. What’s more, each of these was broken in absolute terms, not as a result of any nuanced position or interpretation. Today comes word of another campaign promise to be added to the ash heap of “history’s unmarked grave of discarded campaign promises,” to paraphrase a prior occupant of the Oval Office. As a candidate, Barack Obama promised to, “put an end to the abuse of no-bid contracts once and for all.” So it was only a matter of time before Obama was certain to be discovered awarding no-bid contracts of his own. Please click here for the rest of the post.

4. NYC Police Commissioner: We Were Never Consulted on Terror Trials

Mike Bloomberg’s Chief of Police spoke to the New York Young Republican Club last week, and he told the stunned audience that the Obama White House never consulted with the NYPD or Mayor Bloomberg before announcing a decision to try Khalid Sheikh Muhammad in lower Manhattan. Please click here for the rest of the post.

5. Barack Obama Prepares to Drive Up the Costs of Education

When Obama takes to the podium for the State of the Union, one of the things he is allegedly going to push is a wholesale federal take over of the student loan industry. Already, his plans are causing a lot of students, particularly of private higher ed colleges and universities, problems with getting financing for education. Obama intends to shut out the usual third party lenders and put everything within the federal government — under a program that has been shown repeatedly to be highly inefficient and burdensome for academic institutions. More troubling, by putting everything under the Department of Education, universities and colleges will be forced to adhere to federal rules, some of which conflict with the values of sectarian institutions that presently use the third party student loan system for their students. The feds controlling the student loan industry means the feds get to tell academic institutions what values they can and cannot promote among the selection and disciplining of their students. Brigham Young, etc. better watch out. Please click here for the rest of the post.


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