How Do You “Invest” When You’re Broke?

Hey Obama, what part of “we don’t have any money” don’t you understand?

CBO: Federal deficit to hit $1.5T this year

Last month’s bipartisan tax cuts and spending deal has deepened the federal deficit dramatically this year, putting the government on track for a nearly $1.5 trillion shortfall — the largest in history — the Congressional Budget Office said Wednesday.

The sobering check on the country’s finances was announced a day after President Obama‘s address to Congress and underscored the country’s tenuous fiscal standing, which could doom many of Mr. Obama‘s initiatives to boost government spending on education, roads and other infrastructure.

The CBO did say the economy appears to be improving, albeit slowly, from a deep recession that drove the unemployment rate to more than 10 percent. The rate is still above 9 percent, despite efforts by Mr. Obama and Congress to pump money into the economy.

“It’s been a slow recovery by the standards of our past. The labor market in particular has been coming back slowly; income has been coming back slowly,” said CBO Director Douglas Elmendorf.

Social Security Will Post Shortfall This Year, CBO Says

Social Security will post a $45 billion shortfall in fiscal 2011 and will pay out more in benefits than it accepts in payroll taxes through at least 2021 without legislative changes, the Congressional Budget office said on Wednesday.

See also:
The Budget and Economic Outlook: Fiscal Years 2011 to 2021
CBO projects record-high $1.5 trillion budget deficit this year
As deficits, debt soar, Obama, Congress fail to confront them
Deficit Outlook Darkens
CBO forecast: frightening fodder for both parties
It’s official: The debt is ballooning. Now can we think clearly?
Social Security to Run Deficits for Foreseeable Future, CBO Says
Social Security fund now seen to be empty by 2037
Social Security to Operate in the Red for the Next 10+ Years: CBO
Social Security to run permanent deficits, says CBO
CBO: Social Security Will Run Permanent Deficits
A Roadmap for America’s Future

I swear, Is Paul Ryan the only adult in Washington? When are these moron politicians going pay attention, grow some spines, and start taking this fiscal crisis seriously. Every day that goes by, we dig ourselves deeper into the national debt hole and it becomes ever so much more difficult and painful to try and climb out of our self inflicted, bottomless deficit pit.

/we’d better just forget about pie in the sky choo choo trains and go straight to the required austerity budget measures

Advertisements

Can We Call It The Biggest Boondoggle In American History Yet?

Obama and the Democrats lied, ObamaCare is going to cost way more than if they had passed nothing? Say it ain’t so! Seriously, what sane person didn’t see this coming? The really scary part is, it’s only going to get much worse.

CBO Hikes ObamaCare Cost Estimate By $115 Billion

Better sit down, because you are in for a “shock”: ObamaCare will cost more than previously thought.

The Congressional Budget Office today released an analysis of discretionary spending in the law, and found that those costs will “probably exceed” $115 billion over 10 years.

At a stroke, that erases almost all of ObamaCare’s $143 billion in budget savings based off rushed, incomplete CBO projections given just before the decisive House vote in March.

Of course, that original forecast also assumed politically poisonous Medicare cuts and numerous other budget tricks. But, continuing to set those issues aside, the CBO suggests even its surplus forecast may prove ephemeral.

The new estimate includes the costs of administering the law by the IRS and the Dept. of Health and Human Services, and the cost of “future appropriations for a variety of grant and other program spending for which the act identifies the specific funding levels it envisions for one or more years.”

Yet there are other programs for which “no specific funding levels are identified in the legislation,” and the CBO couldn’t estimate the cost of those. The smart money says those costs will exceed $28 billion.

See also:
CONGRESSIONAL BUDGET OFFICE Douglas W. Elmendorf, Director, May 11, 2010
Discretionary Spending in the Final Health Care Legislation
Health overhaul law potentially costs $115B more
Health Overhaul Law Potentially Costs $115B More
CBO ups health care cost projections
CBO revises estimate on reform law costs
Republicans jump on new CBO score to blast health reform bill
Consequences of health care law coming to light

The sooner we toss out enough Democrats and elect Republicans instead, the sooner we can get rid of or at least modify this incomprehensible, money devouring mountain of [expletive deleted].

/vote like you mean it in November, this Democrat induced travesty is coming out of your wallet

Read It And Weep For America’s Future

Obama gets bad numbers from Congressional Budget Office

Jobs and the deficits are going to be big themes of President Obama’s big speech tomorrow — and he got some bad numbers on both topics today from the Congressional Budget Office.

Oval colleague Richard Wolf breaks it down for us:

Here’s more bad news on the budget front for President Obama: A new report by the Congressional Budget Office says the nation’s $1.4 trillion deficit is likely to stay in that range for the next two years.

The 2010 deficit should be about $1.35 trillion, and if Obama keeps President Bush’s tax cuts in place and extends other expiring tax breaks, the 2011 deficit would be about the same, the report says. Over the next decade, the nation would rack up another $12 trillion in deficits, thereby doubling the size of the $12 trillion national debt.

“Daunting” and “bleak” were just some of the adjectives used by CBO Director Douglas Elmendorf on Tuesday to describe the 10-year budget picture. Spending is projected to outpace revenue, and the debt would soon be two-thirds the size of the overall economy. By 2020, interest payments on that debt would be more than $700 billion, about four times the size of the current amount.

The report shows the unemployment rate rising slightly above 10% before declining slowly. Not until 2014 would the rate drop back to 5%.

“In sum, the outlook for the federal budget is bleak,” Elmendorf said. “U.S. fiscal policy is on an unsustainable path to an extent that cannot be solved by minor tinkering.”

But don’t worry, it’s Obama to the rescue.

Obama’s federal spending freeze

The White House has been cranking out initiatives daily in an effort to regain the public’s confidence, and on Tuesday, its target was the enormous federal deficit. Aides to President Obama disclosed that his forthcoming budget will call for a three-year freeze on “non-security discretionary funding.” That’s bureaucratese for capping everything but defense, homeland security, veterans, international affairs and entitlements (for example, Medicare and welfare), with no adjustments for inflation. That would result in $250 billion less being spent over the coming decade than currently projected, said Rob Nabors, deputy director of the Office of Management and Budget. Although it’s merely a gesture, it’s a good one that sends the right signals to Congress and the public.

Skeptics were quick to note how little of the budget actually would be affected — about 17% — and how small the savings seem in comparison to the $6 trillion in total deficits expected over the coming decade. And presidential budgets are just proposals; Congress controls the purse strings. It’s hard to say how well received Obama’s latest offering will be, given how few details have been released. The official line is simply that the administration’s budget for fiscal 2010 (which runs from October 2010 through September 2011) will call for cutting some programs and increasing others.

So, in case you’re still confused, the National Debt is projected to double to over $20 trillion in the next ten years and Obama’s answer is to save $250 billion over the next decade. It’s like trying to put out a five alarm fire with a squirt gun, it’s a joke.

Oh, and remember that useless “stimulus” that we borrowed almost a trillion dollars for, the Democrat porkfest that had to be passed immediately to keep the unemployment rate below 8%? Well, four million jobs lost and a 10% unemployment rate later, guess what?

Officials Say Stimulus Bill to Cost $75B More

Last year’s $787 billion economic stimulus bill is going to be even more expensive — $75 billion more.

The new Congressional Budget Office estimate, released Tuesday, provides more ammunition for Republicans who say the stimulus has been long on spending and short on creating promised jobs. The additional cost also eats into the savings forecast from the budget freeze President Barack Obama is expected to propose Wednesday night during his State of the Union address.

Almost half of the additional cost, $34 billion, is because the food stamp program won’t be able to take advantage of lower-than-expected inflation rates and will instead have benefits set by the stimulus bill.

Higher unemployment insurance costs added $21 billion to the bill, and stimulus-subsidized bonds to pay for infrastructure projects have proven more popular than expected with state and local governments.

The $75 billion increase would erase one-third of the $250 billion in 10-year savings that would come from the partial domestic spending freeze being proposed by Obama. The boost in unemployment payments alone would more than erase the $10 billion to $15 billion in first-year savings from such a freeze.

And don’t forget that we borrowed the “stimulus” money so the debt service over time is going to make it cost more.

Read the whole depressing, frightening, and sobering CBO report:

The Budget and Economic Outlook:
Fiscal Years 2010 to 2020

See also:
Bleak Economic Projections as Obama Prepares for State of the Union Address
The CBO’s Economic Outlook Is Bleak
US Congressional Budget Office Chief Sees ‘Bleak’ Outlook
CBO Chief: “The Outlook For The Federal Budget Is Bleak”
Budget Office: The government’s finances on ‘unsustainable path’
CBO: Federal Deficit Projected at $1.35T
The Obama Fisc
Budget sanity
A ‘Bleak’ Budget but Slightly Better
Obama Seeks Partial Three-Year Spending Freeze
Broad range of programs targeted by proposed spending freeze
How much would Obama’s spending freeze trim US deficits? Not a lot.
The “spending freeze” in context
Tepid Reception for Obama Spending Freeze
Obama faces backlash on spending freeze
The Obama Spending Freeze is Simply Not Credible
Spending Freeze Won’t Melt Partisan Divide
Stimulus is now $75 billion more expensive
Stimulus Bill to Cost $75 Billion More Than Expected, CBO Says
Congressional Budget Office says stimulus bill to cost $75 billion more
CBO: Stimulus $75 Bln More Expensive Than Estimated
Stimulus price tag soars as jobless rate rises

/no matter what Obama sys tomorrow night, the State of the Union, is not strong

In The House Corner . . . Weighing In At 1990 Pages . . . The Affordable Health Care For America Act

From behind the closed doors of Nancy Pelosi’s office, submitted for your perusal . . .

Affordable Health Care for America Act

If you start now and read several hundred pages a day, you might be able to get through it by the time they start to debate it on the House floor next week. As with all these bills, written in legislative gibberish that would make a challenging read for a lawyer, pack a lunch and leave a trail of bread crumbs.

Oh look, PBS has already posted a summary of the bill only a few hours after it was unveiled. I wonder who they got that from, Pelosi and the Democrats? PBS staffers certainly haven’t had time to read the bill for themselves yet.

Bill Summary: Affordable Health Care for America Act

House Democrats on Thursday unveiled the Affordable Health Care for America Act. The 1,990-page legislation is a combination of bills passed by three House committees earlier this year. Key tenets include:

· New regulations | New insurance industry regulations would prohibit insurers from rejecting customers based on pre-existing conditions. The regulations would also prohibit annual or lifetime caps on benefits.

· Insurance exchange | The bill would set up a new national health insurance exchange, a marketplace where individuals who do not have employer-sponsored insurance would be able to shop for plans. The exchange would also be open to small businesses, and more would be able to join each year. Companies with 25 or fewer employees would be able to join in 2013, companies with 50 or fewer employees could join in 2014, and companies with fewer than 100 employees could join by 2015.

· Public insurance option | The health insurance exchange would include a government-run public plan. Federal officials would negotiate payment rates with doctors and hospitals that accept the plan.

· Employer mandate | Employers with annual payrolls greater than $500,000 would be required to either provide health insurance for their employees, or contribute 8 percent of their payroll to a federal fund to help subsidize employees who purchase coverage through the exchange. Employers with payrolls less than $500,000 would be exempt from the mandate.

· Individual mandate | Individuals will be required to purchase health insurance, or pay a penalty fee. Some people would be eligible to apply for a hardship waiver.

· Medicaid expansion | Medicaid would be expanded to cover everyone whose income is below 150 percent of the poverty line, or about $33,000 per year for a family of four.

· Affordability subsidies | People who earn between 150 percent and 400 percent of the federal poverty level would be eligible for subsidies on a sliding scale to purchase insurance through the exchange. Those subsidies would ensure that people who make 150 percent of the poverty level would not have to pay more than 3 percent of their income in premiums, while those who make 400 percent of the poverty level could pay up to 12 percent of their income in premiums.

· Out-of-pocket expenses caps | New regulations would cap yearly out-of-pocket medical expenses for individuals at $5,000 and families at $10,000. Those who earn less than 400 percent of the poverty level would have lower caps, on a sliding scale.

· Tax surcharge | The bill would help pay for itself by imposing a 5.4 percent tax surcharge on individuals earning more than $500,000 per year and families earning more than $1 million.

· End-of-life counseling | The bill retains a controversial provision that allows Medicare to pay for voluntary end-of-life counseling

Oh yeah, and did you catch the part where Pelosi said that the House bill would cost less than $900 billion? Would it surprise anyone to know that she’s lying her ass off through her Botox induced permagrin teeth?

CBO: House Bill Costs $1.055 Trillion

The Congressional Budget Office is out with its analysis of the House Democrats’ health care bill. The headline number — likely to be widely cited in media accounts — is that the bill costs $894 billion over 10 years. But in reality, the CBO says that the gross cost of the bill will be $1.055 trillion. The $894 billion number reflects the taxes being paid by individuals who don’t have insurance and employers who don’t provide insurance.

In addition, the bill relies on some of the same budgetary gimmicks as the Senate Finance Committee’s bill. Once again, we see that the Democrats backload the spending provisions into the final six years of the CBO’s 10 year budget window to make it appear cheaper. Specifically, the CBO says the bill’s gross spending will be $60 billion in the first four years, and $995 billion in the next six years (or 94 percent of the total).

Also, while the CBO says that the bill will reduce deficits by $104 billion over 10 years and keep reducing the deficit (albiet slightly) beyond that, it cautions that these estimates assume that proposed budget cuts will actually get enacted by future members of Congress. “These longer-term projections assume that the provisions of H.R. 3962 are enacted and remain unchanged throughout the next two decades, which is often not the case for major legislation,” the CBO director Douglas Elmendorf wrote. “The long-term budgetary impact of H.R. 3962 could be quite different if those provisions generating savings were ultimately changed or not fully implemented.”

The CBO estimate doesn’t include the more than $200 billion it will cost to prevent scheduled cuts to doctors’ payments under Medicare, which Democrats intend to pass through separate legislation.

The bill would also add 15 million people to the Medicaid rolls, costing states an additional $34 billion over 10 years.

Another thing to keep in mind is that the CBO report doesn’t say anything about whether the bill actually bends the health care cost curve. To be clear, while it estimates — with caveats — that the bill will reduce deficits, that isn’t the same thing as reducing national health care expenditures, which is how people derive all those statistics about how high of a percentage of GDP we spend on health care compared with other countries. If you hike taxes high enough, you can get the CBO to say it reduces deficits on paper, but that’s a lot different from bringing down the actual costs of health care to our nation.

Wait a minute, it’s not just Pelosi who’s lying about the 2000 page path to socialized medicine . . .

See also:
House Democrats announce health-care bill
Statement from President Obama on the Affordable Health Care for America Act
House health bill clocks in at 1,990 pages
House Dems unveil health care bill
House Democrats unveil healthcare legislation including public option
House Dems announce health bill
Pelosi Unveils House Health Care Bill
House takes another step on healthcare reform
Details on health care bills in House, Senate
A 1,990-Page Medical Monstrosity
It’s alive! End-of-life counseling in health bill
Clyburn: ‘Cadillac tax’ in healthcare would violate Obama’s pledge
House Healthcare Bill Longer Than ‘War and Peace’
Democrats’ Unhealthy Reform Plans
1502 Pages Of Senate Deficit Deepening, Health Care Razing Gibberish

Of course, this monsterous sham has to be passed by the House and then Reid has to come out from behing his closed office doors and unveil the Senate’s gigantic mockery of health care “reform”, which will have to be passed by the Senate. Next, Pelosi and Reid will have to take the ~4000 pages of both bills behind closed conference doors, to conjure the final bloated shamockery bill, that’ll need to pass both houses of Congress.

/hopefully, there’s still enough hoops to jump through and divisions between Democrat factions that, somewhere along the line, they’ll come up short on needed votes and the entire national debt boosting travesty will collapse under it’s own socialist weight

Where’s The Fire?

Reformers’ Claims Just Don’t Add Up

Health Reform: Many extravagant claims have been made on behalf of the various health care “reforms” now emerging from Congress and the White House. But on closer inspection, virtually all prove to be false.

Yet even as many Americans start to have second thoughts about our government’s possible takeover of the health care system, Congress is rushing to make it happen.

On Friday, the House Ways and Means Committee approved a bill that would radically change our current system and expand coverage for the uninsured. The action came a day after the head of the Congressional Budget Office said none of the plans under review would slow health care spending. None of them.

Still, lawmakers and the White House press on, relying on GOP weakness in the House and a new veto-proof majority in the Senate. They’re also relying on a lack of awareness that claims made on behalf of national health care may be mostly false. Among them:

• America has a health care crisis.

No, we don’t. Forty-seven million people lack insurance. Of the remaining 85% of the population, or 258 million people, polls show high satisfaction with the current coverage. Indeed, a 2006 poll by ABC News, the Kaiser Family Foundation and USA Today found 89% of Americans were happy with their own health care.

As for the estimated 47 million not covered by health insurance, 20 million can afford to buy it, according to a study by former CBO Director June O’Neill. Most of the other 27 million are single and under 35, with as many as a third illegal aliens.

When it’s all whittled down, as few as 12 million are unable to buy insurance — less than 4% of a population of 305 million. For this we need to nationalize 17% of our nation’s $14 trillion economy and change the current care that 89% like?

• Health care reform will save money.

Few of the plans now coming out of Congress will save anything, says the CBO’s current chief, Douglas Elmendorf. In fact, he says, they’ll lead to substantially higher costs in the future — costs that will be “unsustainable.”

As it is, estimates for reforming health care range from $1 trillion to $3.6 trillion. Much will be spent on subsidies to make a so-called public option more attractive to consumers than private plans.

To pay for it, the president has suggested about $600 billion in new taxes, meaning that $500 billion to $2.1 trillion in new health care spending over the next decade will be unfunded. This could push up the nation’s already soaring deficit, expected to reach $10 trillion through 2019 without health care reform. Massive new tax hikes will probably be needed to close the gap.

• Only the rich will pay for reform.

The 5.4% surtax on millionaires the president is pushing gets all the attention, but everyone down to $280,000 in income will pay more. Doesn’t that still leave out the middle class and poor? Sorry. Workers who decline to take part will pay a tax of up to 2% of earnings. And small-businesses must pony up 8% of their payrolls.

The poor and middle class must pay in other ways, without knowing it. The biggest hit will be on small businesses, which, due to new payroll taxes, will be less likely to hire workers. Today’s 9.5% jobless rate may become a permanent feature of our economy — just as it is in Europe, where nationalized health care is common.

• Government-run health care produces better results.

The biggest potential lie of all. America has the best health care in the world, and most Americans know it. Yet we hear that many “go without care” while in nationalized systems it is “guaranteed.”

U.S. life expectancy in 2006 was 78.1 years, ranking behind 30 other countries. So if our health care is so good, why don’t we live as long as everyone else?

Three reasons. One, our homicide rate is two to three times higher than other countries. Two, because we drive so much, we have a higher fatality rate on our roads — 14.24 fatalities per 100,000 people vs. 6.19 in Germany, 7.4 in France and 9.25 in Canada. Three, Americans eat far more than those in other nations, contributing to higher levels of heart disease, diabetes and some cancers.

These are diseases of wealth, not the fault of the health care system. A study by Robert Ohsfeldt of Texas A&M and John Schneider of the University of Iowa found that if you subtract our higher death rates from accidents and homicide, Americans actually live longer than people in other countries.

In countries with nationalized care, medical outcomes are often catastrophically worse. Take breast cancer. According to the Heritage Foundation, breast cancer mortality in Germany is 52% higher than in the U.S.; the U.K.’s rate is 88% higher. For prostate cancer, mortality is 604% higher in the U.K. and 457% higher in Norway. Colorectal cancer? Forty percent higher in the U.K.

But what about the health care paradise to our north? Americans have almost uniformly better outcomes and lower mortality rates than Canada, where breast cancer mortality is 9% higher, prostate cancer 184% higher and colon cancer 10% higher.

Then there are the waiting lists. With a population just under that of California, 830,000 Canadians are waiting to be admitted to a hospital or to get treatment. In England, the list is 1.8 million deep.

Universal health care, wrote Sally Pipes, president of the Pacific Research Institute in her excellent book, “Top Ten Myths Of American Health Care,” will inevitably result in “higher taxes, forced premium payments, one-size-fits-all policies, long waiting lists, rationed care and limited access to cutting-edge medicine.”

Before you sign up, you might want to check with people in countries that have the kind of system the White House and Congress have in mind. Recent polls show that more than 70% of Germans, Australians, Britons, Canadians and New Zealanders think their systems need “complete rebuilding” or “fundamental change.”

• The poor lack care.

Many may lack insurance, but that doesn’t mean they lack care. The law says anyone who walks into a hospital emergency room must be treated. America has 37 million people in poverty, but Medicaid covers 55 million — at a cost of $350 billion a year.

Moreover, as many as 11 million of the uninsured qualify for programs for the indigent, including Medicaid and SCHIP. But for some reason, they don’t sign up. Are they likely to sign up for the “public option” when it’s made available?

See also:
Investors Business Daily
Congressional Budget Office
Heritage Foundation
House Ways And Means Committee
Kaiser Family Foundation
Pacific Research Institute

Just the facts ma’am. Make up your own mind. But remember, you only have TWO WEEKS TO DO SO OR THERE WILL BE CATACLYSMIC HEALTHCARE DISASTER!

Stay strong, fight back, hold your ground.

/in January 1945, the Germans were desperate to take Bastogne and the surrounding terrain, we won

Take It To The River, Drop It In The Water, Hold It Under Until It’s Good And Dead

Everyone wants better healthcare. But making it worse and more expensive is obviously the wrong way to go about reform. Of course, better, more affordable healthcare apparently isn’t part of Obama’s agenda. Thankfully, the secretive, rushed through, Democrat controlled Congressional process is starting to catch a few whiffs of sanity and fresh air.

CBO Chief Criticizes Democrats’ Health Reform Measures

Instead of saving the federal government from fiscal catastrophe, the health reform measures being drafted by congressional Democrats would increase rather than reduce public spending on health care, potentially worsening an already bleak budget outlook, the director of the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office said this morning.

Under questioning by members of the Senate Budget Committee, CBO director Douglas Elmendorf said bills crafted by House leaders and the Senate health committee do not propose “the sort of fundamental changes that would be necessary to reduce the trajectory of federal health spending by a significant amount.”

“On the contrary,” Elmendorf said, “the legislation significantly expands the federal responsibility for health-care costs.”

Though President Obama and Democratic leaders have said repeatedly that reining in the skyrocketing growth in spending on government health programs such as Medicaid and Medicare is their top priority, the reform measures put forth so far would not fulfill their pledge to “bend the cost curve” downward, Elmendorf said. Instead, he said, “The curve is being raised.”

The CBO is the official arbiter of the costs of legislation, and Elmendorf’s stark testimony is certain to undermine support for the measures even as three House panels begin debate and aim to put a bill on the House floor before the August recess. Fiscal conservatives in the House, known as the Blue Dogs, were already threatening to block passage of legislation in the Energy and Commerce Committee, primarily due to concerns about the long-term costs of the House bill.

Centrist Dem Leader: Has Committee Votes To Block Health Bill

U.S. Rep. Mike Ross, D-Ark., a leader of fiscally conservative House Democrats, said Wednesday a House plan to overhaul the U.S. health-care system is losing support and will be stuck in committee without changes.

“Last time I checked, it takes seven Democrats to stop a bill in the Energy and Commerce Committee,” Ross told reporters after a House vote. “We had seven against it last Friday; we have 10 today.”

Three House committees are slated to begin considering the $1 trillion-plus bill this week, but the Energy and Commerce looms as the biggest challenge. That’s because it counts among its 36 Democratic members seven members of the Blue Dog Coalition, a fiscally conservative bloc that is opposing the House Democrats’ effort.

Ross said the bill, introduced Wednesday by House Democratic leaders, doesn’t include provisions adequate to curb rising health care costs, including what the government spends on healthcare.

“The current bill would have to be substantially amended before we could consider supporting it,” Ross said.

See also:
CBO says costs will rise as healthcare expanded
Rep. Camp raises concerns about health care bill
Cost at heart of GOP attack
Joe Biden: ‘We Have to Go Spend Money to Keep From Going Bankrupt’
Real battle over health care reform about to begin
Health Care Push and Pushback
The White House’s Definition of Bipartisanship
Income Tax Hike on the Wealthy to Pay for Health Care Reform
GETTING PERSONAL: Health Bill Creates Deluge Of Tax Talk
Study: House Democrats’ Health Care Bill Pushes Top Tax Rates to Over 50% in Most States
The Eye-Popping Cost of Obamacare
Tax Hike Comin’
House Dems’ Health Reform Taxes Rich, Creates Public Plan, Employer Penalties

/why is it that anyone with a fifth grade education can easily understand basic economic reality, but Obama and most of the Democrats can’t?

Where’s The Stimulus And Why Do We Need Any More Of It Anyway?

Remember the urgency?

So, this pork packed $1 trillion, plus interest, “stimulus” bill just had to be passed immediately, before anyone could even read it, to save the economy from disaster. Well, it’s more than three months later, just how much of this urgently needed $1 trillion in “stimulus” money has actually been spent so far?

Obama upbeat about stimulus, but not much has been spent

“Only a small part” of the nation’s $787 billion economic stimulus had been spent through the end of last month, according to congressional analysts, despite the Obama administration’s boasts Wednesday that the plan is a big success.

“One hundred days later, we are already seeing results,” President Barack Obama said during a visit to Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada.

“Across America, recovery is under way,” Vice President Joe Biden said in a statement accompanying a 28-page progress report.

However, Douglas Elmendorf, the director of the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, was more cautious in his “State of the Economy” review to the House Budget Committee last week.

“The economy will stop contracting and resume growing during the second half of this year,” he said, “but the hardships caused by the recession will persist for some time.”

The CBO report found that through April only about $19 billion in stimulus funds has been spent.

The Results Are In: Stimulus Bill Neither Timely Nor Targeted

Before the passage of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (also known as the “stimulus bill”), President Obama and his chief economic advisor, Larry Summers, stressed that the government’s response to the economic crisis needed to be “timely, targeted, and temporary.” As predicted by a Heritage Foundation analyst,[1] the bill is neither timely nor targeted. Only time will tell if it is temporary.

Not Timely

Government agencies have spent only a tiny fraction of money planned to be spent in fiscal years 2009 and 2010. Moreover, agencies have not allocated most of the money that has been directed toward them for any named projects.

As of May 8, less than 8 percent of the spending scheduled for fiscal years ’09 and ’10 has taken place.[2] That 8 percent ($37 billion) had been spent almost entirely on Health and Human Services until the week of May 1, when $12 billion was spent in one week by the Department of Labor. Before the week of May 1, just 3.3 percent of scheduled ’09 and ’10 spending had occurred.

Of the $461 billion called for to be spent by the stimulus bill before the end of fiscal year 2010, just $37 billion has been doled out. Of that, $16 billion has been spent by the Health and Human Services department, $12 billion has been spent by the Department of Labor, and $6 billion has been issued in one-time payments to Social Security recipients. All of the other agencies combined have spent a total of $2.6 billion as of May 8.

Not Targeted

Fiscal year 2010 ends September 30, 2010, but the recession could end sooner than that. Indeed, a majority of economists surveyed in April predicted the recession will end in 2009.[3] Fed chairman Ben Bernanke also thinks the recession will end this year. The stimulus bill threatens to miss the very target it was meant to address.

Spending to fight an already-ended recession is unnecessary and wasteful. More diffusely, the specific spending programs targeted to fight the recession have mostly not been named.

Of the $461 billion of the stimulus bill the President’s budget blueprint says will be spent in fiscal years 2009 and 2010, just $102 billion has even been targeted for specific outlays by government agencies. Once again, a large amount of this sum is allocated by the Health and Human Services Department. Several agencies (such as the Agency for International Development, NASA, and the National Science Foundation) have yet to say how any of the billions of dollars granted to them by the act will be spent. Just 22 percent of the fiscal years 2009 and 2010 stimulus spending has been planned by government agencies.[4]

The New Keynesianism

The new Keynesian philosophy fashionable among Washington policymakers is that government spending can pull an economy out of recession–that government spending “injects” new demand into the economy, thereby increasing GDP.

But every dollar Congress injects into the economy must first be taxed or borrowed out of the economy. Rather than add new demand, government spending merely redistributes existing demand. Even transferring money from savers to spenders will not add new demand, because nearly all savings are banked or invested and then quickly made available for someone else to spend. Simply put, Congress cannot create new demand out of thin air, and this explains the repeated failure of Keynesian policies.

See also:
Very Little Stimulus Spending So Far
Economic Stimulus: How Much Has Been Spent So Far?
How Much of the Stimulus Money Has Been Spent? Not Much!
Obama, GOP Battle Over Impact Of Stimulus
Obama’s stimulus: First 100 days, ‘spin?’
Watchdog: Stimulus spending a corruption risk
What Is Congress Stimulating?
See If You Can Read It Before Congress Passes It

No matter who’s doing the counting, it’s pretty clear that it’s been over three months now and hardly any of this desperately needed $1 trillion has even been spent yet, a drop in the ocean, spit in a bucket. Surely not an amount that anyone can seriously claim, with a straight face, is doing anything to “stimulate” the U.S. $13+ trillion GDP economy. And how has this trivial amount of Democrat pork spending been spent so far, what important uses has it been put to? Let’s ask Joe Biden.

RECOVERY REPORT: 100 DAYS 100 PROJECTS

Here’s a random sample of what your taxpayer money (borrowed, but you’ll have to pay for it eventually, with interest) is being spent on in the name of desperately needed “stimulus”:

Supporting Communities:17. Darlington County, South Carolina, will be the location of a new 4,200 square-foot library supported in part by $787,000 of Recovery Act Community Facility Grant funding. This new library, located in the town of Society Hill, will replace an existing 850 square-foot building, and provide for the informational, educational, and recreational needs of the 4,000 residents who live in the greater Society Hill area of Darlington County. Isolated from larger libraries by 17 miles in either direction, the Society Hill library supports junior and high school students research needs, as well as adults who use the library’s resources for help in locating jobs, for instructions on constructing a resume, and for submitting their resumes electronically.

Direct Farm Loans:18. With the assistance provided by a Farm Service Agency (FSA) USDA Stimulus Beginning Farmer operating loan, Chang Suhn Lee and his wife Soon Oak have been able to expand their farm in Coalmont, Tennessee, both keeping a family farm operating and keeping up with a growing demand for their crops. Combined with a USDA Direct Farm Ownership Loan the Lees received in 2007, they have expanded their vegetable farm from seven acres to 45 acres in 2009.

Direct Farm Loans:19. David and Katherine Pyle, both raised on dairy farms, recently sought to start their own diary operation and saw a classified advertisement to purchase cows and lease a dairy facility in Augusta County, Virginia. Working with the Farm loan team and using Recovery Act funding, the Pyles were able to work out a loan and started the lease on their new farm on April 1st. Using Recovery Act funds to purchase cows, breed heifers and provided start-up and operating capital, the Pyles now own and manage a growing dairy operation.

Direct Farm Loans: 20. Norman and Ida Layne, along with their son Avery, of Cullen, Virginia, received two direct operating loans supported by Recovery Act funds for their family dairy and hog farm. The combined loans will help support direct operating expenses of the farm, as well as prior fee, repair and veterinary expenses, and will allow the Laynes to be able to keep the family farm for their son. Without the assistance of Recovery Act funds, the Laynes would have had to sell the family farm.

Supporting Communities:21. Ecumenical Faith In Action, Inc., in Washington County, Virginia, is the recipient of $50,000 in Community Facility Grant funding through the Recovery Act. With this funding, Ecumenical Faith in Action will add approximately 5,300 square feet to its food-distribution center. Their existing facility does not have any walk-in freezers or coolers — or even a loading dock. All frozen food is stored in approximately 25 residential type chest freezers. The addition will help alleviate these problems.

Hey, there’s 95 more “projects”, most just as worthless. Read the whole thing. And remember, this pork spending is just barely out of the starting gate, there’s about $950 billion more to flush down the toilet on unneeded Democrat pet projects like this that we can’t afford in the first place. And has anyone noticed that, despite this non-stimulative, wasteful pork spending, the economy is starting to recover anyway and most economists predict that the recession will be over by the end of this year?

Economists: Recession to end in 2009

The end of the recession is in sight, according to a new survey of leading economists.

While the economy is showing signs of stabilizing, the recovery will be more moderate than is typical following a severe downturn, said the National Association for Business Economics Outlook in a report released Wednesday.

The panel of 45 economists said it expects economic growth will rebound in the second half of 2009. However, the group still expects to see a decline in second-quarter economic activity.

“The good news is that the NABE panel expects economic growth to turn positive in the second half of this year, with the pace of job losses narrowing sharply over the remainder of this year and employment turning up in early 2010,” said NABE president Chris Varvares in a written statement.

Almost three out of four survey respondents expect the recession will end by the third quarter of 2009, the report said.

But 19% predicted that a turnaround won’t come until the fourth quarter, and 7% said it may not come until early 2010. None of the panelists expected the recession to continue past the first quarter of next year.

See also:
Will the recession end in 2009?
U.S. Recession May Soon End, Business Economists Say (Update1)
Economists hope US recession will end in 2009
Survey: Most economists see recession end in ’09
Geithner Says Economy Stabilizing, at ‘Beginning’ of Recovery

Let’s recap. We had to have a $1 trillion pork spending bill shoved down our throats, before anyone could even read it, in order to pull the economy out of a deep recession. But, the tiny fraction of the $1 trillion that’s been actually spent so far, more than three months later, isn’t enough to “stimulate” the economy in any meaningful way and has been spent on a variety of Democrat pet project pork nonsense that we don’t need and had to borrow the money for. Furthermore, in spite of this wasteful spending, the economy is recovering all by itself, and the economic consensus is that the U.S. will be out of this recession in about six months!

Now, you may ask yourself, if the purpose of the “stimulus” was to pull the economy out of the recession and, despite the “stimulus”, the economy will be out of the recession before the end of the year, why the [expletive deleted] do we need to spend another $950 billion of borrowed money, that we’ll have to pay interest on, on shameful, useless pork?

Of course, the obvious answer is that we don’t. In fact, all this additional, unnecessary pork “stimulus” spending will do nothing besides massively increase U.S. deficits and debt, trigger higher interest rates and inflation, increase the size of government and crowd out private sector investment. In other words, it’ll be a huge drag on economic growth and the debt albatross we’ll soon have around our necks could conceivably break the U.S. economy itself. If Obama and the Democrat Congress had any honor or shame they’d immediately repeal all the unspent portions of the “stimulus” bill still in the pipeline, in the name of fiscal responsibility and the American taxpayer, generations present and future.

/but they won’t do that because stimulating the economy wasn’t their objective in the first place, Obama and the Democrats could care less about the economy or the taxpayers, what they’re after is raw power, an expanded government, and the votes to hang onto it in 2010