The New Pig Book Is Here, The New Pig Book Is Here!

It’s a bipartisan effort, Republicans are just as bad as Democrats. Take a look at who’s flushing your hard earned tax dollars down the hog trough.

Cochran Leads Congress in Earmarks, $16.5B Total Set Aside for Pet Projects in 2010

Drumroll, please.

And the king of pork is … Sen. Thad Cochran. The Mississippi Republican ranks at the top this year of the Citizens Against Government Waste’s list of congressional earmarkers.

Cochran, the ranking Republican on the Senate Appropriations Committee, is typically a leading pork-seeker and in 2010 had his name on 240 projects worth $490.2 million The runner-up was Appropriations Committee Chairman Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii, with 151 projects worth $387.5 million.

Taken together, earmarked projects in fiscal year 2010 accounted for $16.5 billion of the federal budget. Leading the the 50 states was Hawaii, which enjoyed $251 per capita, thanks in large part to the help of Inouye. On the House side, Rep. Earl Pomeroy, D-N.D., took home the gold with 50 projects worth $148.4 million.

Citizens Against Government Waste President Tom Schatz said Cochran has earned the nickname of “Thad the Impaler” for his persistent earmarking.

“Senator Cochran has been number one for three years in a row and his total exceeds $2 billion during that three-year period of time,” he said.

The good news was the number of earmarks declined — the 9,129 projects listed marked about a 10 percent decline from last year. But that’s still more than 15 times the number of projects when Citizens Against Government Waste first started tracking in 1991.

And according to the annual “Congressional Pig Book” released Wednesday by the watchdog group, some oddball projects were on the receiving end. Shrimp research, local museums and military projects that even the Pentagon didn’t want were among the beneficiaries this year of billions of dollars in pork-barrel spending, according to the guide.

Here’s a look at some of the more peculiar projects on the extensive “Pig Book” list:

— Shrimp must be in vogue this year. The budget set aside $2.9 million in seven states for shrimp aquaculture research. Elsewhere in the budget was $700,000 requested by several senators and representatives for fishing research by the Southern Shrimp Alliance.

— Five senators and four representatives across four states requested $2.6 million for potato research. Along those lines, several lawmakers also set aside $775,000 for the Institute for Food Science and Engineering, which, as CAGW notes, has a program for researching “Pickle Science and Technology.”

— The wool industry has attracted millions in funding over the past decade and 2010 was no different. Montana, Texas and Wyoming were the recipients of $206,000 for wool research.

— Talk about a war on drugs. Among the projects requested by Cochran was $500,000 for the University of Southern Mississippi for a cannabis eradication program.

— The Camden Police Department, which reportedly was not eligible for stimulus funding because of prior grant violations, was awarded $200,000 in earmarks from New Jersey’s two senators, Frank Lautenberg and Robert Menendez, for a Mobile Communications Center.

The Pentagon was awarded billions for programs Defense Secretary Robert Gates spoke out against as unnecessary. One earmark worth $2.5 billion was for 10 C-17 cargo jets. Another was worth $465,000 for development of a Joint Strike Fighter alternative engine. Lawmakers fought administration attempts to cut those programs out of concern over lost jobs.

— Somehow, the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the Senate also made its way into the defense budget. The institute is expected to include exhibits, classrooms and a replica of the U.S. Senate chambers — at a price of $18.9 million.

— Local museum and educational center funding was also popular this past year. The budget included $100,000 for the Cabot’s Pueblo Museum in Desert Hot Springs; $250,000 for the Wistariahurst Museum in Massachusetts; $500,000 for the Czech and Slovak Museum and Library in Cedar Rapids, Iowa; and another $500,000 for the National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium in Dubuque, Iowa.

— Several educational campaigns also received funding. Among them was $250,000 for an anti-steroids awareness program at the I Won’t Cheat Foundation in Salt Lake City.

And that’s just the tip of the pork iceberg. Read The 2010 Pig Book for yourself and pick out your own favorite nauseating examples of tax money wasted on hog[expletive deleted].

The Congressional Pig Book is CAGW’s annual compilation of the pork-barrel projects in the federal budget. The 2010 Pig Book identified 9,129 projects at a cost of $16.5 billion in the 12 Appropriations Acts for fiscal 2009. A “pork” project is a line-item in an appropriations bill that designates tax dollars for a specific purpose in circumvention of established budgetary procedures. To qualify as pork, a project must meet one of seven criteria that were developed in 1991 by CAGW and the Congressional Porkbusters Coalition.

Complete Pork Database: Search all 9,129 projects by keyword, member, state, party or appropriations bill.

Features: Oinker Awards | State Rankings | Historical Trends | All About Pork

See also:
2010 Pig Book Summary
Citizens Against Government Waste
Earmark Spending $16.5 Billion in CAGW’s 2010 Congressional Pig Book
“Pig Book” released today details members of congress’ pork requests
The 2010 Congressional Pig Book: 20 Years at the Trough
68M For Ind. Among Earmarks Flagged In ‘Pig Book’
Rep. Yvette Clarke Wins Award in CAGW’s 2010 Pig Book
Pig book shows earmark reduction
Watchdog group finds smaller servings of congressional pork

Okay, so $16.5 billion is hardly a drop in the overall budget bucket and it’s good that the Congressional hogs pigged out on fewer earmarks than last year. But damn it, $16.5 BILLION IS REAL MONEY, IT’S YOUR HARD EARNED TAX MONEY, OR BORROWED FROM THE CHINESE, AND THESE CORRUPT MORONIC BASTARDS ARE SPENDING IT ON RIDICULOUS, UNNECESSARY BULL[EXPLETIVE DELETED]!

/inform yourself, pay attention to who’s wastefully spending America into economic oblivion, and vote accordingly in November

The First Stimulus Has Been A Total Disaster So Naturally Democrats Plan To Waste Even More Borrowed Money On More Useless Stimulus

Hey, I know, the first “stimulus” isn’t working, so let’s spend more money we don’t have on a second “stimulus”. Nevermind that we haven’t even spent one third of the first trillion dollar “stimulus” yet.

Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

/Albert Einstein

STIMULUS WATCH: Unemployment Unchanged by Projects

A federal spending surge of more than $20 billion for roads and bridges in President Barack Obama’s first stimulus has had no effect on local unemployment rates, raising questions about his argument for billions more to address an “urgent need to accelerate job growth.”

An Associated Press analysis of stimulus spending found that it didn’t matter if a lot of money was spent on highways or none at all: Local unemployment rates rose and fell regardless. And the stimulus spending only barely helped the beleaguered construction industry, the analysis showed.

With the nation’s unemployment rate at 10 percent and expected to rise, Obama wants a second stimulus bill from Congress including billions of additional dollars for roads and bridges — projects the president says are “at the heart of our effort to accelerate job growth.”

Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood defended the administration’s recovery program Monday, writing on his blog that “DOT-administered stimulus spending is the only thing propping up the transportation construction industry.”

Road spending would total nearly $28 billion of the Jobs for Main Street Act, a $75 billion second stimulus to help lower the unemployment rate and improve the dismal job market for construction workers. The Senate is expected to consider the House-approved bill this month.

But AP’s analysis, which was reviewed by independent economists at five universities, showed the strategy of pumping transportation money into counties hasn’t affected local unemployment rates so far.

“There seems to me to be very little evidence that it’s making a difference,” said Todd Steen, an economics professor at Hope College in Michigan who reviewed the AP analysis.

And there’s concern about relying on transportation spending a second time.

“My bottom line is, I’d be skeptical about putting too much more money into a second stimulus until we’ve seen broader effects from the first stimulus,” said Aaron Jackson, a Bentley University economist who also reviewed AP’s analysis.

And what if your “stimulus” isn’t creating even a fraction of the jobs you promised? Well, as they say, if you can’t dazzle them with your brilliance, baffle them with your bull[expletive deleted]!

White House Inflates Stimulus Job Creation With Accounting Gimmicks

The Obama administration is changing the way it counts jobs created or saved by stimulus spending in a way that will make the programs look far more successful.

Under the old rules, only jobs that were actually newly created or not lost because of stimulus money were counted. Now the administration plans to count all jobs for projects funded by stimulus money—even if that job already existed and the person was never in danger of losing the job.

The changes were made in a little noticed memo sent to federal agencies by OMB director Peter Orszag, according to a new report from ProPublica.

See also:
More Stimulus? Analysis Finds Funds for Roads, Bridges Has Had No Impact
Stimulus? There’s No Stimulus Here
Where Are The Stimulus Jobs?
U.S. road projects don’t help unemployment
Study: Road projects don’t help unemployment
No Unemployment Impact from Road and Bridge Spending
White House Changes Stimulus Jobs Count
White House changes how stimulus jobs are counted
Farewell “Saved or Created”: Obama Administration Changes the Counting of Stimulus Jobs
Counting jobs
White House panics on jobs
SUBJECT: Updated Guidance on the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act – Data Quality, Non-Reporting Recipients, and Reporting of Job Estimates

/Democrat’s “stimulus”, throwing money in the money hole, what’s the difference?

How Bad Does The “Stimulus” Suck?

Let Tom Coburn count the ways. As a taxpayer, you’ll have trouble believing just how bad it really is and this is only the tip of the iceberg.

A Second Opinion on the Stimulus

Earlier this year, Congress was quick to pass the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, or stimulus bill that promised to jumpstart the economy and put Americans back to work by spending $787 billion on “shovel-ready” projects across the country.

There was no question that the nation’s economic condition demanded bold action. Nor is there any question that the massive amount of stimulus spending so far has created some new jobs. Yet, as recent statistics have shown, the jobs that may have been created or saved from the stimulus are not offsetting the millions of jobs that our economy is still hemorrhaging. In my estimation, Congress chose the wrong approach to stimulating the economy by spending money we don’t have on things we don’t need. Real stimulus includes lowering the tax and regulatory burden on hardworking families and businesses, which creates good jobs for the long term.

Unemployment soared to 9.4 percent in May 2009, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), with 14.5 million Americans now out of work. These numbers are staggering, but may actually be too low. BLS also reports that “true unemployment” could be as high as 16.4 percent when adjusted for all workers that would like to work full time but are discouraged from doing so. Behind these statistics are stories of families trying to make ends meet without a steady pay check, and even those who have not lost their jobs are anxious about their own financial situation, as well as the future that they can expect for their children and grandchildren.

It is fair to say that these statistics do not tell the full story of the stimulus. Taxpayers have a lot of questions about how the stimulus is working and they deserve answers.

For example, what kinds of jobs are being created? Are these permanent jobs or seasonal and temporary jobs that will soon be gone when the project is completed? What are the merits of projects being funded with stimulus dollars? Will these projects make real improvements in the lives of taxpayers and communities or are they simply pet projects of politicians and lobbyists that never got off the ground because they are a low priority? Are some stimulus projects actually making matters worse for ordinary Americans?

Taxpayers would not be shocked to hear that millions of dollars of stimulus money are being wasted, but they might be shocked to learn the answers to these questions. After a review of thousands of projects, it is fair to claim that there are some successes, but there are also places where we need to do better.

Earl Devaney, head of the Recovery Act Accountability and Transparency (RAT) Board, estimates that at least $55 billion of the money may be lost to waste, fraud and abuse. Unfortunately, we all have come to expect waste and mismanagement when Washington spends money. But this time the expectation must be different. When ordinary Americans are laid off or lose their jobs, they are losing more than just income. They are losing their health insurance, as well as their ability to pay their mortgages, to send their kids to school, or even provide necessities like food and shelter.

This report is an attempt to look beyond the statistics of jobs created or even money wasted. It, instead, provides a closer examination of 100 projects, programs and missteps – worth $5.5 billion – some even in my own home state of Oklahoma, that are likely to fail the expectation of out of work Americans who were hoping this bill would create good jobs that they are desperately seeking so that they can provide for their families once again.

I plan on issuing additional reports on stimulus projects in the months to come in the hope that by keeping government accountable, we can provide the most value for taxpayers.

Tom Coburn, M.D.
U.S. Senator

GOP senator issues list of 100 wasteful stimulus projects

It’s no secret that Sen. Tom Coburn isn’t wild about the federal stimulus.

But on Tuesday the Oklahoma Republican underscored his displeasure with a 45-page report on 100 stimulus projects he considers wasteful, with special care for his top 10 most dubious projects. Read the complete report here.

The worst project in his view is a wastewater facility in Perkins, Okla. The town gets $1.5 million in stimulus help for the project, but it comes with enough other federal strings attached that it has forced a 60 percent rate hike, Coburn claims.

Only one stimulus project from Arizona made his list, a $5.4 million grant to the Phoenix Police Department that will likely go to ticketing equipment rather than extra cops.

Back in February, even before President Barack Obama signed it into law, Coburn released a list of 37 stimulus projects he considered wasteful.

“There was no question that the nation’s economic condition demanded bold action. Nor is there any question that the massive amount of stimulus spending so far has created some new jobs,” Coburn notes at the outset of his latest report. “In my estimation, Congress chose the wrong approach to stimulating the economy by spending money we don’t have on things we don’t need.”

Top 10 wasteful stimulus projects

Senator Tom Coburn (R – Okla), a staunch opponent of wasteful spending, has issued a report entitled 100 Stimulus Projects: A Second Opinion. The report highlights 100 of the most wasteful projects funded by the stimulus. Here are the top ten wasteful projects according to the report.

1. “Free” Stimulus Money Results in Higher Utility Costs for Residents of Perkins, Oklahoma

2. $1 billion for FutureGen a power plant that uses “cutting edge technology.” The irony of the whole project is that the costly technology being used is already obsolete.

3. $15 million for “shovel-ready” repairs to little-used bridges in rural Wisconsin are given priority over widely used bridges that are structurally deficient.

4. $800,000 for little-used John Murtha Airport in Johnstown, Pennsylvania airport to repave a back-up runway; the “airport for nobody” has already received tens of millions in taxpayer dollars.

5. $3.4 million for a wildlife “eco-passage,” a way for animals to go under a busy road, in Florida.

6. Nevada non-profit gets $2 million weatherization contract after recently being fired for same type of work.

7. Non-existent Oklahoma lake in line for over $1 million to construct a new guardrail.

8. Nearly $10 million to be spent to renovate a century old train station that hasn’t been used in 30 years.

9. Ten thousand dead people get stimulus checks, Social Security Administration blames a tough deadline.

10. Town of Union, New York, encouraged to spend money it did not request for a homelessness problem it does not have.

See also:
Sen. Coburn Questions Stimulus Projects
New Report Cites Wasteful Stimulus Spending — Going Nowhere
Stimulus program fraught with waste, report says
Sen. Coburn questions 100 stimulus projects
Guardrail to ‘Nowhere’ Should Go, Says Coburn
Coburn: Stimulus Forces Higher Utility Rates
Some projects raise question: Where’s the stimulus?
More to Florida turtle crossing than Oklahoma Sen. Coburn claims

And here’s another “stimulus” gem that didn’t make Coburn’s list, but it proves the law of unintended consequences and that no one actually read the shameful “stimulus” bill before they voted on it.

STIMULUS WATCH: $25 check may cost you food stamps

When President Barack Obama increased unemployment benefits as part of his economic stimulus, he also made some Americans ineligible for hundreds of dollars a month in food stamps.

Under the economic recovery plan, laid-off workers have seen a $25 weekly bump in their unemployment checks as part of a broad expansion of benefits for the poor. But the law did not raise the income cap for food stamp eligibility, so the extra money has pushed some people over the limit.

Laid-off workers and state officials are only now realizing the quirk, a consequence of pushing a $787 billion, 400-page bill through Congress and into law in three weeks.

And for people hurt by the change, there’s no way around it.

See also:
Obama’s unemployment boost kicks thousands off foodstamps
How $25 Extra in Unemployment Benefits is Hurting Some
Stimulus bill adds jobless benefits; removes food stamps
Georgia Man Says Stimulus Money Costing Him
Move To Help Families May Be Hurting Others

So, here we have even more evidence that very little of the “stimulus” money has been spent so far and the money that has been spent has been spent of ridiculous Democrat pet projects that do nothing to boost the economy or ease unemployment. And, seeing as the economy is already starting to recover despite the “stimulus”, any further insane spending of money we don’t have on things we don’t need, is an unconscionable waste of borrowed money that taxpayers, present and future, will have to repay, with interest.

/in the name of common sense and basic fiscal responsibility, CANCEL THE REST OF THE “STIMULUS”, CANCEL IT NOW!

Why They Protest

Well, it seems that today’s Tea Party protests were, for the most part, a rousing success, with over 200,000 attendees at hundreds of different locations all across the country. Not bad for the middle of a work week. So, who are these people and why did they take to the streets today?

Some would have you believe that they’re fringe group kooks with sinister motives.

Desperate to dismiss the tea parties

Democrats and other skeptics are desperate to dismiss the tea parties that popped up across the country today. Kansas City political consultant Steve Glorioso told The Star they were being staged by the “same far right fringe characters driven in large part by talk radio.”

This eagerness to explain away this movement is telling, suggesting the skeptics see these gatherings as a real threat. Certainly the tea parties have an anti-Obama slant, but what we’re seeing is something outside the normal dynamics of Democrat-Republican tension.

In fact, as Glenn Reynolds writes, in some cases established politicians haven’t been allowed to speak at all.

The good news for Republicans is that, while the Republican Party flounders in its response to the Obama presidency and its programs, millions of Americans are getting organized on their own. The bad news is that those Americans, despite their opposition to President Obama’s policies, aren’t especially friendly to the GOP. When Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele asked to speak at the Chicago tea party, his request was politely refused by the organizers: “With regards to stage time, we respectfully must inform Chairman Steele that RNC officials are welcome to participate in the rally itself, but we prefer to limit stage time to those who are not elected officials, both in Government as well as political parties. This is an opportunity for Americans to speak, and elected officials to listen, not the other way around.”

Likewise, I spoke to an organizer for the Knoxville tea party who said that no “professional politicians” were going to be allowed to speak, and he made a big point of saying that the protest wasn’t an anti-Obama protest, it was an anti-establishment protest. I’ve heard similar things from tea-party organizers in other cities, too. Though critics will probably try to write the tea parties off as partisan publicity stunts, they’re really a post-partisan expression of outrage.

This is a genuine grassroots phenomenom. Various facets of the GOP coalition and conservative movement are trying to leverage this movement, but the movement was there first, and it took off after Rick Santelli’s famous rant in Chicago. It isn’t clear yet what the tea party movement is all about, but it can’t be dismissed as something that simply arose from shadowy GOP organizers.

However, from everything I”ve heard, read, and seen, that wasn’t the case at all. They were just ordinary Americans, fed up with an out of control government. The events were so diverse today, it would be futile to try and post representative links. Check out Hot Air, Istapundit, PJTV or try Googling something like april 15 tea party to try and get a flavor of what happened.

So why do hundreds of thousands of average, everyday Americans take to the streets in protest in the middle of a work week? It’s actually quite simple.

gr2009032100104

See also:
The Natives Are Getting Restless
Spending Like A Drunken Sailor On Crack
The Blueprint For The Total Destruction Of The United States Of America
The Shot Heard Round Chicago And Spreading
See If You Can Read It Before Congress Passes It

/’nuff said

We’re Going To Need A Bigger Trough

US House Passes $3.55T Budget Resolution

The U.S. House passed a $3.55 trillion budget blueprint that would clear that way for President Barack Obama’s major policy initiatives but which saw heavy criticism from Republicans for expanding the reach of the federal government.

The resolution would set funding levels for fiscal year 2010, which begins October 1. The bill contains slightly less spending than Obama’s $3.6 billion budget blueprint.

The House passed its version of the budget resolution by a 233-196 vote. No Republicans voted for the resolution.

See also:
Deeply Split House Approves Budget, With No G.O.P. Votes
House Approves $3.5 Trillion Budget of Obama Initiatives
U.S. House approves $3.45 trillion budget
FINAL VOTE RESULTS FOR ROLL CALL 192
Spending Like A Drunken Sailor On Crack
The Blueprint For The Total Destruction Of The United States Of America

Way to go House Republicans!

/make the Democrats totally own this bloated, fiscally irresponsible, bankrupt the country and screw our grandchildren, monstrous travesty

Presidential Signing Statements

Remember all the the Democrat derision, indignation and uproar when George W. Bush issued signing statements, statements that have been issued by Presidents since the inception of the country?

Ruh roh, people are asking questions, there might be a disturbance in the Hope (or the Change, I get confused), unleash the pet weasel!

Well, so much yada, yada yada.

Signing Statements Reappear in Obama White House

Democrats often criticized the Bush White House for its use of the presidential signing statement, a means by which the president can reject provisions of a bill he deems unconstitutional without vetoing the entire legislation. Now the approach is back.

President Barack Obama, after signing into law a $410 billion budget bill on Wednesday, declared five provisions in the bill to be unconstitutional and non-binding, including one that would effectively restrict U.S. troop deployments under U.N. command and another aimed at preventing punishment of whistleblowers.

The move came two days after Mr. Obama ordered a review of his predecessor’s signing statements and said he would rein in the use of such declarations.

“As I announced this past Monday, it is a legitimate constitutional function, and one that promotes the value of transparency, to indicate when a bill that is presented for Presidential signature includes provisions that are subject to well-founded constitutional objections,” Mr. Obama said in the statement.

[SIGNING] STATEMENT BY THE PRESIDENT

Today I have signed into law H.R. 1105, the “Omnibus Appropriations Act, 2009.” This bill completes the work of last year by providing the funding necessary for the smooth operation of our Nation’s Government.

As I announced this past Monday, it is a legitimate constitutional function, and one that promotes the value of transparency, to indicate when a bill that is presented for Presidential signature includes provisions that are subject to well-founded constitutional objections. The Department of Justice has advised that a small number of provisions of the bill raise constitutional concerns.

Foreign Affairs. Certain provisions of the bill, in titles I and IV of Division B, title IV of Division E, and title VII of Division H, would unduly interfere with my constitutional authority in the area of foreign affairs by effectively directing the Executive on how to proceed or not proceed in negotiations or discussions with international organizations and foreign governments. I will not treat these provisions as limiting my ability to negotiate and enter into agreements with foreign nations.

United Nations Peacekeeping Missions. Section 7050 in Division H prohibits the use of certain funds for the use of the Armed Forces in United Nations peacekeeping missions under the command or operational control of a foreign national unless my military advisers have recommended to me that such involvement is in the national interests of the United States. This provision raises constitutional concerns by constraining my choice of particular persons to perform specific command functions in military missions, by conditioning the exercise of my authority as Commander in Chief on the recommendations of subordinates within the military chain of command, and by constraining my diplomatic negotiating authority. Accordingly, I will apply this provision consistent with my constitutional authority and responsibilities.

Executive Authority to Control Communications with the Congress. Sections 714(1) and 714(2) in Division D prohibit the use of appropriations to pay the salary of any Federal officer or employee who interferes with or prohibits certain communications between Federal employees and Members of Congress. I do not interpret this provision to detract from my authority to direct the heads of executive departments to supervise, control, and correct employees’ communications with the Congress in cases where such communications would be unlawful or would reveal information that is properly privileged or otherwise confidential.

Legislative Aggrandizements (committee-approval requirements). Numerous provisions of the legislation purport to condition the authority of officers to spend or reallocate funds on the approval of congressional committees. These are impermissible forms of legislative aggrandizement in the execution of the laws other than by enactment of statutes. Therefore, although my Administration will notify the relevant committees before taking the specified actions, and will accord the recommendations of such committees all appropriate and serious consideration, spending decisions shall not be treated as dependent on the approval of congressional committees. Likewise, one other provision gives congressional committees the power to establish guidelines for funding costs associated with implementing security improvements to buildings. Executive officials shall treat such guidelines as advisory. Yet another provision requires the Secretary of the Treasury to accede to all requests of a Board of Trustees that contains congressional representatives. The Secretary shall treat such requests as nonbinding.

Recommendations Clause Concerns. Several provisions of the Act (including sections 211 and 224(b) of title II of Division I, and section 713 in Division A), effectively purport to require me and other executive officers to submit budget requests to the Congress in particular forms. Because the Constitution gives the President the discretion to recommend only “such Measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient” (Article II, section 3 of the Constitution), the specified officers and I shall treat these directions as precatory.

BARACK OBAMA

THE WHITE HOUSE,
March 11, 2009.

See also:
Obama’s Signing Statement and Federal Agencies
Obama Uses Signing Statements, Though Maybe Not Like Bush. Sigh
Presidential Signing Statements
Signing statement (United States)
H.R. 1105

/Barack Obama, complete, utter assclown or just an arrogant, condescending, cynical, hypocritical, lying assclown?

Here We Go Again

Pelosi leaves door open to second stimulus

U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Tuesday left the door open to another stimulus bill to boost the ailing economy, although economists were split over the need for one.

Last month, Congress approved a $787 billion spending plan that included money for roads and bridges as well as tax cuts for individuals and small businesses, all aimed at reversing the economy’s sharp downward spiral.

After meeting behind closed doors with prominent economists, Pelosi said that at the moment she would adopt a wait-and-see approach to a further economic stimulus, but noted that job losses would likely increase over the coming months.

“It will take a little time to get going, some of it’s already in the works, but we must give it time to work,” Pelosi told reporters flanked by economists and fellow Democrats who met to discuss the struggling economy.

“You have to keep the door open to see how this goes,” she said.

Key Democrat Prepares for Another Possible Stimulus Package

The ink from President Obama’s signature is barely dry on is first economic stimulus package, yet a top Democrat already is getting ready for another one — if it should become necessary.

Rep. David Obey, D-Wis., suggested Wednesday that although it is too early to be moving forward with a new stimulus package, he has directed House Appropriations Committee staff members to begin “preparing options” and ideas for the possibility of another bill to revive the ailing economy.

See also:
Nancy Pelosi open to second stimulus package
Pelosi: Second Stimulus Might Be Needed
Romer: Too Early to Tell if We Need a Second Stimulus
Democrats draw up plan for second stimulus bill
Cantor open to second stimulus
Republicans oppose more stimulus spending
GOP blasts second stimulus idea
U.S. Posted $192.78 Billion Total Budget Deficit in February
Budget deficit reaches $765B in 5 months
U.S. February Budget Deficit Widened as Revenue Fell
Budget Deficit Soars To $756 Billion As Government Spending Adds Up

So, apparently they’re admitting that the first trillion dollar Porkapalooza was a gigantic waste of money we don’t even have, that won’t do anything to stimulate the economy.

/the Democrats are totally out of control, what part of we’re broke don’t they understand?

Senate Republicans Tell You To Bend Over Again

Senate passes earmark-loaded budget bill

The Senate approved a $410 billion spending bill Tuesday that will fund the federal government until the end of September, overcoming the objections of Republicans who argue the bill costs too much and is chock-full of pet projects.

Utah’s GOP Sens. Orrin Hatch and Bob Bennett stood in opposition to the omnibus bill, which ultimately passed on a voice vote and will now go to President Barack Obama for his signature.

Hatch zeroed in on earmarks, while Bennett objected to the overall price tag. Bennett defends the earmarking process and says that some in his own party use it to “mislead” the public.

Their disparate views show a rift among Republicans on earmarks, which has dominated the discussion over the budget bill.

The omnibus bill funds transportation, health, energy, education and a slew of other programs. It includes an 8 percent funding increase over the previous year, not to mention 8,500 earmarks worth about $7.7 billion.

Hatch called it “a big huge spending boondoggle,” singling out the pet projects in explaining his “no” vote.

“There’s a lot of stuff in there that’s just thrown in to take advantage of what happens to be a financial crisis,” he said.

But Hatch sponsored 42 of those earmarks worth $63 million and 40 percent of all earmarks were requested by Republicans. He said that many of the earmarks are legitimate, but others “are slipped into the bill at the last minute.”

See also:
Senate passes omnibus bill
Senate passes $410-billion spending bill
Obama gets omnibus and earmark fight
GOP Cross-Overs Have Earmarks to Gain in $410 Billion Spending Bill
H.R.1105

The final passage was by voice vote so we’ll never know who the cowardly weenies were. However, the cloture vote, required to cut off debate (filibuster) was 62-35.
The guilty?

YEAs —62

Alexander (R-TN)
Bond (R-MO)
Cochran (R-MS)
Murkowski (R-AK)
Shelby (R-AL)
Snowe (R-ME)
Specter (R-PA)
Wicker (R-MS)

Please note that between the Stimulus Porkapalooza and this latest $410 billion dip at the debt trough, Obama toadies Olympia Snowe and Arlen Specter have personally cost American taxpayers, with interest on the debt, well over a trillion dollars!

/if the Republican party stood for anything resembling conservative economic values and fiscal restraint, this $410 billion porkfest could have easily been stopped dead in it’s tracks

A Trillion Is Not Enough

Never Enough

Government Spending: Did anyone really think $787 billion would be enough to quench the Democratic Congress’ thirst for play money from the taxpayers? Now they want $410 billion more.

In addition to solar water heaters for rural Puerto Rico and the Raul Alvarez Golf Course in Austin, Texas, Obama administration sources say the U.S. is also planning to relieve taxpayers of $900 million for Gaza, much of which can be expected to land in the pockets of the terrorist group Hamas, which runs the region.

To a family being foreclosed on, or a businesswoman forced by tough times to close up shop, this doesn’t exactly signal that Uncle Sam is in solidarity with you.

The new spending bill is an 8% increase over last year and the largest discretionary spending increase since Jimmy Carter. President Bush refused to go along with what Congress was demanding for fiscal 2009, so now it has clumped the items previously denied into a $410 billion monster. The House of Representatives will vote on it this week, and the Senate is expected to follow soon after.

Amid the measure’s sneaky fine print is a provision to ax Washington, D.C.’s innovative school choice program. House Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, called it “an irresponsible and shameful act on the part of the Democratic leadership in Congress, and the children of the District of Columbia deserve better.”

Is it any wonder House Speaker Nancy Pelosi won’t make spending legislation available online ahead of time so Americans can scrutinize it line by line?

Remember, this feeding frenzy at the porkfest trough, which contains 8500-9000 earmarks, is in addition to last week’s Porkapalooza and before Congress starts working on Obama’s first budget.

See also:
House to Approve Thousands of Earmarks in ‘Omnibus’ Budget Bill
Another Day, Another $410 Billion
House Democrats want $410 billion more
Two Obama Cabinet Members Added Earmarks to Omnibus Spending Bill

Of course Obama, on numerous occasions, has pledged to reform the earmark pork process.

“We need earmark reform,” Obama said in September during a presidential debate in Oxford, Miss. “And when I’m president, I will go line by line to make sure that we are not spending money unwisely.”

So, will Obama keep his word and cut out the pork? Hell no, he’ll sign it as is! His excuse?

“It will be a little embarrassing for the president if he signs a bill with that many earmarks on it,” said Stan Collender, a veteran Washington budget analyst. “He’ll say they’re left over from the Bush years, and he as to say that next year the bill will be clean.”

In fact, that’s exactly the excuse Obama thug David Axelrod used on Fox News last night, after Obama’s speech, when asked that very question. This $410 billion appropriations bill is left over from the Bush administration and that the Obama administration is “looking forward”. In other words, this bill doesn’t count, it’s not on our watch, it’s not our problem.

/well, it is your problem because you and your descendants are going to pay for another big heaping helping of wasted pork spending, so bend over and assume the position yet again

This Is Not The Pork You Seek

Are you feeling stimulated yet?

AP: About Obama’s “no pork” assertion…

Barack Obama made the claim at least twice yesterday that the stimulus bill had no pork in it. In his prime-time press conference, Obama almost angrily rejected the notion that the Generational Theft Act contained pork:

But what I — what I’ve been concerned about is some of the language that’s been used suggesting that this is full of pork and this is wasteful government spending, so on and so forth. …

But when they start characterizing this as pork without acknowledging that there are no earmarks in this package — something, again, that was pretty rare over the last eight years — then you get a feeling that maybe we’re playing politics instead of actually trying to solve problems for the American people.

And earlier in the day, during his Elkhart town-hall meeting:

And, listen, I know that there are a lot of folks out there who’ve been saying, “Oh, this is pork, and this is money that’s going to be wasted,” and et cetera, et cetera. Understand, this bill does not have a single earmark in it, which is unprecedented for a bill of this size, does not have a single earmark in it.

In a literal sense, that’s true — but only because the stimulus bill is essentially an Omnibus Earmark Package. It consists entirely of local and state projects that would normally only get funded as earmarks on other appropriations. Even the Associated Press calls shenanigans on this claim:

THE FACTS: There are no “earmarks,” as they are usually defined, inserted by lawmakers in the bill. Still, some of the projects bear the prime characteristics of pork – tailored to benefit specific interests or to have thinly disguised links to local projects.

For example, the latest version contains $2 billion for a clean-coal power plant with specifications matching one in Mattoon, Ill., $10 million for urban canals, $2 billion for manufacturing advanced batteries for hybrid cars, and $255 million for a polar icebreaker and other “priority procurements” by the Coast Guard.

Could this obscene Porkapalooza get any more ridiculous? Why yes, yes it could.

Stimulus has $30M to save Pelosi’s harvest mouse

House Republicans are challenging Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s claim that the massive stimulus spending bill contains no pet projects after uncovering in the bill more than $30 million for wetlands conservation in her San Francisco Bay area district, including work she previously championed to protect the salt marsh harvest mouse.

“This sounds like spending projects that have been supported by a certain powerful Democrat in the past,” said Michael Steel, spokesman for House Minority Leader John A. Boehner, Ohio Republican.

“It certainly doesn’t sound like it will create or save American jobs,” he said. “So can Speaker Pelosi explain exactly how we will improve the American economy by helping the adorable little” critter?

See also:
Stimulus bill just pork in new disguise
Obama Claims Stimulus Pork-Free, AP Disagrees
Pork & Pet Projects
History Says Obama’s Stimulus Won’t Work
How to Wreck the American Economy
Government overreach isn’t stimulating

/as Rear Admiral Joshua Painter said in The Hunt for Red October, “This business will get out of control. It will get out of control and we’ll be lucky to live through it.”