Archive for March, 2009
If people haven’t figured it out yet, the Obama administration and Congressional Democrats are control freaks. They currently own numerous financial institutions, an insurance company and a auto maufacturer. If you think that’s proof of their control freak nature, you ain’t seen nothing yet.
If, after reading this article, you still don’t think that they’re control freaks, you need psychiatric help. Here’s the latest proof that this bunch is a bunch of control freaks:
But now, in a little-noticed move, the House Financial Services Committee, led by chairman Barney Frank, has approved a measure that would, in some key ways, go beyond the most draconian features of the original AIG bill. The new legislation, the “Pay for Performance Act of 2009,” would impose government controls on the pay of all employees, not just top executives, of companies that have received a capital investment from the U.S. government. It would, like the tax measure, be retroactive, changing the terms of compensation agreements already in place. And it would give Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner extraordinary power to determine the pay of thousands of employees of American companies.
This legislation isn’t just the Democrats’ attempt to set sensible rgulations. It’s about their attempt to control everything that they can.
The purpose of the legislation is to “prohibit unreasonable and excessive compensation and compensation not based on performance standards,” according to the bill’s language. That includes regular pay, bonuses, everything, paid to employees of companies in whom the government has a capital stake, including those that have received funds through the Troubled Assets Relief Program, or TARP, as well as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
The measure is not limited just to those firms that received the largest sums of money, or just to the top 25 or 50 executives of those companies. It applies to all employees of all companies involved, for as long as the government is invested. And it would not only apply going forward, but also retroactively to existing contracts and pay arrangements of institutions that have already received funds.
I’d love to see these officers join with House Republicans in challenging the constitutionality of the Democrats’ ability to go after compensation, especially compensation that’s already been paid. It’s worth noting, too, this seemingly meaningless line:
It applies to all employees of all companies involved, for as long as the government is invested.
This is especially important considering the fact that profitable banks are being subjected to stress tests to determine whether the federal government will allow them to repay their TARP loans ahead of schedule.
If I understand this correctly, these stress tests are essentially a tool in the federal government’s arsenal to tell healthy banks that they aren’t profitable, with the hope of maintaining control of the banks. Here’s one of Dictionary. com’s definitions of socialism:
Any of various theories or systems of social organization in which the means of producing and distributing goods is owned collectively or by a centralized government that often plans and controls the economy.
That certainly isn’t the definition of capitalism. In fact, here’s Dictionary.com’s definition of capitalism:
an economic system in which investment in and ownership of the means of production, distribution, and exchange of wealth is made and maintained chiefly by private individuals or corporations, esp. as contrasted to cooperatively or state-owned means of wealth.
Here’s another definition of socialism:
A theory or system of social reform which contemplates a complete reconstruction of society, with a more just and equitable distribution of property and labor.
Doesn’t that definition sound like it could’ve been pulled from one of President Obama’s speech, especially the part about the “complete reconstruction of society”?
“It’s just a bad reaction to what has been going on with AIG,” Rep. Scott Garrett of New Jersey, a committee member, told me. Garrett is particularly concerned with the new powers that would be given to the Treasury Secretary, who just last week proposed giving the government extensive new regulatory authority. “This is a growing concern, that the powers of the Treasury in this area, along with what Geithner was looking for last week, are mind boggling,” Garrett said.
Democrats see things differently:
Rep. Alan Grayson, the Florida Democrat who wrote the bill, told me its basic message is “you should not get rich off public money, and you should not get rich off of abject failure.” Grayson expects the bill to pass the House, and as we talked, he framed the issue in a way to suggest that virtuous lawmakers will vote for it, while corrupt lawmakers will vote against it.
“This bill will show which Republicans are so much on the take from the financial services industry that they’re willing to actually bless compensation that has no bearing on performance and is excessive and unreasonable,” Grayson said. “We’ll find out who are the people who understand that the public’s money needs to be protected, and who are the people who simply want to suck up to their patrons on Wall Street.”
Rep. Grayson should be ashamed of himself for suggesting that Republicans only care about Wall Street companies. It isn’t that they’re siding with GM and AIG; it’s that they’re fighting against the Obama administration’s attempt at micromanaging private companies.
Without doubt, this is the most control-oriented Congress and administration in history. What’s worse is that there’s little chance that it’ll put people on the path to prosperity.
Cross-posted at California Conservative
Representatives on the call: Chief Deputy Republican Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), Rep. Patrick McHenry (R-NC), Rep. John Campbell (R-CA), Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI)
Rep. Campbell: “This is the biggest spending orgy ever.” Rep. Campbell also said that the debt load essentially guarantees the fact that middle class families won’t see a tax cut.
Rep. Ryan: “We’re going to choose a different direction. They’ll say that you’re stuck with your lot in life so we’ll grow government to help you cope with it. We’re going to present a budget that grows the economy instead of growing government.” “It isn’t inevitable” that we borrow this money.
Rep. McHenry pointed out that Peter Orszag admitted that the House budget is “98 percent like President Obama’s budget.”
The first blogger talked about recent bond auctions in Germany and Great Britain. This blogger asked whether we were approaching the point where we couldn’t sell our bonds and whether that meant we’d have to increase the interest rates for our bonds.
Rep. Paul Ryan said that Treasury started monetizing the debt last week, noting that our currency will be undermined if we don’t stop spending. Rep. Ryan said we’re at a “dangerous confluence in monetary and fiscal policy.”
David Freddoso: Were Republican surprised with the timing of the debate?
Rep. Ryan: “We’re subject to the Majority party’s scheduling.”
My question: Are there any indications on how the Blue Dogs will vote?
Rep. Ryan: There really aren’t any Blue Dog Democrats. The biggest question is whether they’ll march in lockstep with Nancy Pelosi? Anecdotal evidence suggests that they’ll march in lockstep with Nancy Pelosi.
Rep. McCarthy said that a telltale sign of a Blue Dog’s office were the debt clocks outside their offices. The minute Democrats regained the majority, those clocks disappeared. He went on to say that the Blue Dogs weren’t even offering an alternative budget. It was also mentioned that the budget wouldn’t pass if Blue Dogs voted against it. Finally, rep. McCarthy said that “A true conservative couldn’t vote for this budget.”
Rep. Ryan said that he’ll hold a press conference tomorrow morning laying out the House GOP’s alternative budget. He’ll be posting a number of graph’s on his website that show the budget from several different perspectives. To get to those graphs, he said to “just google House Budget Commmittee Ranking Member”, noting that “That’s how I get there.”
One thing that was stressed was that Democrat will try ignoring tomorrow’s budget presentation because it doesn’t fit with their “Republicans are the the party of No” meme.
Technorati: Budget, Deficits, Bond Auctions, Spending, President Obama, Peter Orszag, Monetizing Debt, Tax Increases, Democrats, Kevin McCarthy, Patrick McHenry, John Campbell, Paul Ryan, Alternative Budget, Republicans
Cross-posted at California Conservative
Almost everything that the government attempts to do, it fails at. (The military is the sole exception at this late hour.) That’s why we should be worried now that President Obama has fired Rick Wagoner and taken control of GM. Larry Kudlow nails it in this op-ed:
Sen. Bob Corker (R., Tenn.), probably the most knowledgeable man in Congress about the car bailout, and someone who argued months ago in favor of a pre-planned government-sponsored bankruptcy for GM and Chrysler, calls the Wagoner firing “a major power-grab by the White House on the heels of another power-grab from Secretary Geithner, who asked last week for the freedom to decide on his own which companies are ‘systemically’ important to our country and worthy of taxpayer investment, and which are not.” Corker calls this “a marked departure from the past,” “truly breathtaking,” and something that “should send a chill through all Americans who believe in free enterprise.”
Mr. Corker has hit the nail on the head. And I think his idea of “a truly breathtaking” government departure from American free enterprise, whether it’s the banks or the bankrupt Detroit carmakers, is exactly what caused stocks to plunge 250 points on Monday.
I argued at the time that it shouldn’t be called a auto bailout, that it was really a bailout of the UAW. In light of the fact that the unions are ramping up their lobbying efforts to pass EFCA, it’s easy to understand that this administration is doing its best to resurrect unions. Unfortunately, that’s just the tip of a gigantic iceberg.
BTW, here’s surefire proof that the Obama administration cares more about grabbing and maintaining control of power:
Incidentally, most of the big bankers who met with President Obama in the White House last Friday want to pay back their TARP money, not take more of it. But the Treasury is conducting stress tests that could stop the TARP pay-downs and force the banks to take more taxpayer funds in return for even more federal control.
The big bankers say they are profitable. And with an upward-sloping Treasury yield curve and some market-to-market accounting reform coming from the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB), the outlook for banks should be getting better, not worse. So why is the Treasury jamming more TARP money down bankers’ throats, especially after announcing a new plan to use private capital to clean up bank balance sheets and solve the toxic-asset problem?
Does that sound like proof that the Obama administration wants to just get rid of toxic assets before setting the TARPed banks free? Or does that sound like proof tha they want to maintain their control over these banks? Better yet, what constitutional authority gives them the right to be uberregulators of any private business?
Based on their performance in running the economy into the ground, why should we trust DC’s bureaucrats and politicians with the job of running multi-billion dollar industries?
That’s why people should be very, very afraid.
Cross-posted at California Conservative
According to this post, unions are getting trained in anticipation of a push to get EFCA passed. Here’s the content of the post:
I am just back from Washington, D.C. where UFCW representatives from around the country gathered for education, strategy and lobbying elected officials around the Employee Free Choice Act.
Training was excellent as we continue to ramp up our efforts to pass the most important labor legislation of at least the last 20 years. On Tuesday we had an opportunity to persuade, encourage, and educate our elected officials around the Act.
Things continue to be wild at the State Capitol as well. Yesterday we passed our paid sick days bill out of committee. See more legislative updates below.
Director of Special Projects, UFCW Local 789
The question we need to continually demand answers to is this: Will this policy make us more safe, more prosperous or more free? EFCA does none of the above. In fact, it would strip workers of an important liberty: the ability to cast a secret ballot.
Why is Mr. Hesse willing to cast aside this important protection. Is Mr. Hesse willing to push for the elimination of other protections if it helps unions gain more power?
EFCA isn’t just a push for more unionization. It’s part of the Obama administration’s attempted power grab. The Obama administration’s attempted power grab includes taking over auto manufacturers, banks and other financial institutions as well as the health care industry.
In short, it’s the Democrats’ attempt to ruin this nation.
We held the Benton County Republican convention Saturday. To say that it was a highlight-filled day is understatement. The day started with Rep. Michele Bachmann and finished with the election of new officers. It was filled with great speakers in between, including guest speakers Rep. Tom Emmer, Sen. Michelle Fischbach, Candidate for State Party Chair Carrie Ruud and Deputy Chair Dorothy Fleming.
The new executive board consists of Carol Rupar as Chair, Dave Bentrud as Vice-Chair, Dave Wilson as Secretary, Jim Howe as Treasurer, with Judy Summers, Ron Baert, Jim Sutton, Jesse Shaw and John Dvorak serving as at-large members. Jim Sutton and Ron Baert wert picked as State Central delegates and Dave Wilson and myself picked as alternates.
I’ll have more on this later today.
Nancy Pelosi is insisting that federal health care reform include a public-run option. Most likely, that’s because she agrees with President Obama’s power grab goals. HINT: Democratic Health care reform isn’t about providing high quality care at reasonable prices. It’s about controlling 16 percent of the U.S. economy.
Let’s contrast that with legislation chief authored by Rep. Steve Gottwalt. I wrote in this post that Rep. Gottwalt’s legislation “will improve care for 84,000 Minnesotans, and save the state about $200 million in the coming biennium.â€
Friday afternoon, I attended Steve’s townhall meeting. After the meeting, I spoke with Steve about how he came up with the $200,000,000 savings for this biennium. Steve’s reply was that he started out by building a policy with a specific set of things covered. After that, he went out and priced how much actual insurance companies would charge for his policy. After getting those figures, he and his staff figured out the cost of insuring 84,000 people on MinnesotaCare vs. the cost of insuring these people with his policy. Plugging these people into Steve’s program was $200,000,000 cheaper than plugging them into the existing MinnesotaCare program.
It’s worth noting that Steve said the cost of his plan was based on all 84,000 people being smokers. In other words, the savings would be bigger in reality than in his estimates.
I wrote Thursday that Steve’s bill was so well-constructed that is received unanimous approval in the Health Care and Human Services Policy and Oversight Committee.
At one point, Carolyn Laine was so surprised with the savings with Steve’s plan that she asked how this could be. It didn’t dawn on her that private health insurance could be cheaper than government-run health care. It certainly didn’t dawn on her that significant savings could be realized through private sector insurance.
Which brings us back to Prime Minister Pelosi’s intent to include a government-run option:
â€œThis is not only about the health of individuals in our country, which will be justification enough,â€ said Pelosi, a California Democrat. â€œItâ€™s about the competitiveness of our businesses to make them globally competitive because they are competing with companies and countries where the federal government, their governments, pay for health care. They donâ€™t have to bear those health care costs.â€
For instance, Canada’s health care system is crap:
Dr. Sean Gartner says 11 per cent of the people who came to the emergency room at his hospital in Guelph last month ended up leaving without receiving treatment.
What’s the likelihood that U.S. citizens would knowingly accept a health care system where every ninth ER patient doesn’t get treated? That isn’t the only stain against Canada’s health care system:
Health officials say a man who died in the waiting area of a major Winnipeg hospitalâ€™s emergency department may have been dead â€œfor some timeâ€ before medical staff was alerted, 34 hours after he arrived.
The choice before us is simple: we can accept government-run health care like Canada’s system or we can move towards Rep. Gottwalt’s plan which realizes significant cost savings without a reduction in quality and which increases accessability and includes portability.
This isn’t a difficult choice if the goal is maintaining the high quality of health care while increasing accessability for people. The only reason why people would pick Prime Minister Pelosi’s plan over Steve’s plan is if your goal is to control one-sixth of America’s GDP.
Cross-posted at California Conservative
This isn’t exactly breaking news but Daniel Hannan, a Tory Party member in Britain, has become the toast of the global town after telling British Prime Minister Gordon Brown that he’s a disaster. Thus far this week, Mr. Hannan has appeared on Glenn Beck’s TV show and Sean Hannity’s TV show. To say that he’s been a hit is understatement.
After accusing Mr Brown of losing his moral authority, he finished with the pay-off line: ‘You are the devalued Prime Minister of a devalued government.’
The speech, which was met with cheers and laughter from fellow MEPs, unleashed a torrent of comments on the internet with most praising Mr Hannan’s assessment. Mr Hannan, who represents South East England, said he had been stunned by the response. He said: ‘I suspect what has happened is that a lot of people have wanted to say something similar to him and have never had the chance.
‘There is something very surreal about a speech in the European Parliament, one of the most boring places on earth, causing so much excitement.’
Mr. Hannan should be celebrated for his blunt assessment of Prime Minister Brown’s handling of the British economy. It’s safe to say that Prime Minister Brown is no Tony Blair.
Downing Street last night failed to comment on Mr Hannan’s internet fame. But one of the 5,000 who left comments on YouTube said: ‘Thanks for telling Gordon to his face what many people would like to.’
Another added: ‘Brilliant! As a British victim who has suffered under the Labour yoke for 12 long, depressing years, I am delighted to see that, here at last, is someone telling the story as it really is.’
Here’s the transcript of Mr. Hannan’s speech that these commenters are reacting to:
Prime Minister, I see you’ve already mastered the essential craft of the European politician: namely the ability to say one thing in this chamber and a very different thing to your home electorate. You’ve spoken here of free trade, and amen to that.
Who would have guessed, listening to you just now, that you were the author of the phrase ‘British jobs for British workers,’ and that you have subsidised, where you have not nationalised outright, swaths of our economy, including the car industry and many of the banks.
Perhaps you would have more moral authority in this House if your actions matched your words, and perhaps more legitimacy in the councils of the world if the United Kingdom were not sailing into this recession in the worst condition of any G20 country.
The truth, Prime Minister, is that you have run out of our money. The country as a whole is now in negative equity. Every British child is now born owing around Â£20,000. Servicing the interest on that debt is going to cost more than educating the child.
Now, once again today, you have tried to spread the blame around. You spoke about an international recession, an international crisis.
Well, it’s true that we are sailing together into the squalls but not every vessel in the convoy is in the same dilapidated condition. Other ships used the good years to caulk their hulls and clear their rigging, in other words, to pay off debt. But you used the good years to raise borrowing yet further. As a consequence, under your captaincy, our hull is pressed deep into the waterline under the accumulated weight of your debt.
We are now running a deficit that touches 10 per cent of GDP, an almost unbelievable figure, more than Pakistan, more than Hungary; countries where the IMF has already been called in.
It’s not just that you are not apologising; like everyone else I’ve long accepted that you are pathologically incapable of accepting responsibility for these things; it’s that you are carrying on wilfully worsening our situation, wantonly spending what little we have left.
In the last year 100,000 private sector jobs have been lost and yet you have created 30,000 public sector jobs. Prime Minister, you cannot carry on forever squeezing the productive bit of the economy in order to fund an unprecedented engorgement of the unproductive bit.
You cannot spend your way out of a recession or borrow your way out of debt. And when you repeat, in that wooden and perfunctory way, that our situation is better than others, that we are well placed to weather the storm, I have to tell you, you sound like a Brezhnev era apparatchik giving the party line.
You know and we know and you know that we know that it’s nonsense. Everyone knows that Britain is worse off than any other country as we go into these hard times.
The IMF has said so. The European Commission has said so. The markets say so, which is why the pound has lost a third of its value.
In a few months, the voters will have their chance to say so, too.
They can see what the markets have seen: that you are the devalued Prime Minister of a devalued Government.’
This guy could’ve just as easily been criticizing President Obama’s irresponsible budget. I wish a bold Republican would make this speech.
Cross-posted at California Conservative
Karl Rove’s weekly column in the WSJ is must reading for me, as I suspect it is for many people. This week’s column certainly doesn’t disappoint. It’s Mr. Rove’s belief that President Obama’s policy stumbles are creating an opportunity for revival within the GOP for 2010. I heartily concur. Here’s the opening paragraph of Mr. Rove’s column:
Something powerful is stirring in the land, and it may not be good news for President Barack Obama, his agenda or the Democratic Party. Mr. Obama said Tuesday night his budget moves America “from an era of borrow and spend” to “save and invest.” But people are realizing he would add $9.3 trillion to the national debt, doubling it in six years and nearly tripling it in 10 years, according to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO). How can that be “save and invest”?
I suspect that the Rick Santelli-inspired Tea Party Movement has given people a rallying point. Families and small businesses are cutting back and prioritizing spending. Washington is on a spending spree. AIG-sized companies are the beneficiaries of Washington’s largess. Christopher Dodd is expressing outrage at the AIG bonuses that his legislation codified into law. People see Washington’s ineptitude, especially personified by Treasury Secretary Geithner.
Factor these things together and it’s easy to understand why “something powerful is stirring in the land.”
I further suspect that the stimulus bill was the initial catalyst. After Speaker Pelosi ramrodded the bill through the House and the bill was published online, bloggers started going through the bill line by line. What they found was a disgusting list of things. Most of the money was spent on President Obama’s political allies.
Mostly, though, President Obama is governing like the radical he is while trying to sound moderate in tone. Unlike the campaign, people aren’t buying into President Obama’s schtick.
Meanwhile, House Republicans voted unanimously against the stimulus bill. Even after Susan Collins, Olympia Snowe and ‘Benedict Arlen’ Specter voted with Senate Democrats, people still noticed that Republicans were the party of fiscal sanity in DC.
Americans are also worried about Mr. Obama’s plans for $1.9 trillion more in taxes. These tax hikes won’t just affect the “rich,” as he claims. His cap-and-trade carbon tax will hit everyone who consumes energy, that is, every American. Taxes on the top 5% of filers will result in lost jobs and wages for small businesses and less charitable giving. The administration claims higher taxes are required for deficit reduction. But its spending increases are half again as large as its tax hikes.
The last thing blue collar America can afford is President Obama’s cap-and-trade tax increase. Heating bills are already high enough, thanks mostly to Democrats’ refusal to drill on the OCS.
The joke that’s travelling around the Right Blogosphere is that President Obama still hasn’t solved any problems. Instead, the joke goes, the only thing President Obama knows how to do are massive government takeovers and spending unprecedented amounts of money while racking up unprecedented and unsustainable deficits.
Then-candidate Obama’s campaign was a smooth-running machine. President Obama’s administration is supplying late night talk show hosts with a steady stream of material.
Thanks to that, the GOP’s biggest task might just be looking competent and/or reasonable. That shouldn’t be difficult considering the fact that they’ll be viewed against the radical backdrop that President Obama is painting.
The dynamic he has set in motion could spur the emergence of strong competitors to Mr. Obama in 2012 who take a strong, principled stand against record-setting deficits, debt and taxes. It may also strengthen Republican chances in next year’s midterm elections.
Democrats should, for example, be troubled by a new National Public Radio poll showing Republicans tied or ahead in generic matchups for Congress. And while the midterms are 20 months off, Republican gubernatorial hopefuls in Virginia (Attorney General Bob McDonnell) and New Jersey (former U.S. Attorney Chris Christie) are ahead in two states Barack Obama carried last year that vote this fall.
The tide has turned since November’s elections. The only thing left to be determined is whether this is the start of a wave election or just a really good year for Republicans. We’ll have to wait another 20 months to find that out. What’s certain is that Democrats face an uphill fight in 2010.
Thank You, President Obama.
Cross-posted at California Conservative
Wednesday’s hearing in the House Financial Services Committee produced some fireworks when Michele Bachmann went to-to-toe with embattled Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner.
Here’s the transcript from the confrontation:
REP. BACHMANN: Mr. Chairman, thank you for this opportunity. These truly are extraordinary times in our financial service sector, since one year ago, the federal reserve opened the fed’s discount window in the amount of 29 billion for bear stearns. The american people are looking at the actions of both the federal reserve and the treasury secretary and they are wondering if their government is making a historic shift, jetsonning the free market capitalism in favor of centralized government economic planning. I wonder, Mr. Secretary, if you would comment on that?
SECRETARY GEITHNER: I do not believe that concern is justified. I understand have people would be worried about this, but what we’re doing is using authority that congress gave us, authority a was designed to help protect the american economy.
REP. BACHMANN: Reclaiming my time, Mr. Secretary. What provision in the Constitution could you point to to give authority for the actions that have been taken by the treasury since march of ’08?
SECRETARY GEITHNER: Oh, well, the congress, legislative, in the emergency economic stabilization act, a range of very important new authorities.
REP. BACHMANN: Where in the constitution? What in the constitution could you point to to give authority to the treasury for the extraordinary actions that have been taken?
SECRETARY GEITHNER: Every action that the Treasury, Fed and FDIC has been using authority granted by this body by the congress.
REP. BACHMANN: And in the constitution, what could you point to?
SECRETARY GEITHNER: The laws of the land, of course.
I’m guessing that Rep. Bachmann is pointing out that the bill granting such authority isn’t constitutional. Rep. Bachmann isn’t alone in thinking that it’s unconstitutional.
Here’s the video of the exchange:
That wasn’t the only testy moment during the hearing. Here’s another:
“Do you realize how radical your proposal is?” Rep. Donald Manzullo (R-Il) asked.
“It’s not radical…” Geither began, before Manzullo interrupted him.
“You’re talking about seizing private businesses and you don’t consider that radical?” Manzullo replied, his voice rising.
Manzullo is trying to get Geithner to give details of the plan…that’s where Geithner got stung before…but Geithner doesn’t have them yet.
If the plan were not radical, Manzullo said to Geithner, “you would have answers to some of my questions, such as, what size business would be subject to this?”
Secretary Geithner is being grilled like this because he’s either being secretive or he doesn’t have a plan for this takeover. He’s essentially telling Congress “Trust me.” Following the original TARP legislation, that won’t happen.
What this reveals is that the administration’s purpose for pushing this takeover legislation is nationalization of financial institutions. It isn’t about stabilizing the economy or preventing crises. It’s just another of this administration’s power grabs.
Cross-posted at California Conservative
Yesterday, I participated in another blogger conference call with people from the House Republican Conference. This week’s participants were Rep. Steve King, (R-IA), Rep. Cathy McMorris-Rogers and Rep. Thaddeus McCotter.
Rep. King opened by thanking the bloggers, saying that “We don’t always get the objective truth coming out of the mainstream media” that he “looks to the bloggers as a key component of getting the facts out to the American people.” Rep. King further stated that the “mainstream media would continue to atrophy” if they didn’t do a better job at getting important information out.
President Obama’s budgets proposes deficits totalling $5.6 trillion (presumably over the next 5 years). According to CBO, it increases the deficit as a percentage of GDP to WWII levels. Rep. King said that, when President Obama visited their conference, he told them that the New Deal had worked and that the thing that went wrong was that FDR “had lost his nerve and got too worried about a balanced budget”, which led to a recession within the depression.
Rep. King then said that he’s got to consider ask the question of whether President Obama has decided to “be like Cortez by burning all his ships” and “ramming every hardcore lefty program they’ve ever conceived of…” (Editor’s note: I think that’s the most likely explanation for President Obama’s radical agenda.)
Next up was Rep. McMorris-Rogers’ statement. “No one in the history of the world has borrowed this much money” this fast, citing the fact that we’re adding $1,000,000 of debt PER MINUTE under President Obama’s budget and that President Obama’s budget would “double the debt in five years and triple it in ten years.” Rep. McMorris-Rogers noted that this was “four times the size of the biggest deficit during President Bush’s administration.
Rep. McMorris-Rogers said that such debt accumulation will have profound ramifications on being able to sell off our debt. She also said that that’s the biggest reason why this type of debt load isn’t sustainable.
First question was from Steve Maloney asking whether they would be scheduling blogger conference calls weekly. Rep. McMorris-Rogers said they have been doing these calls regularly because they realize that they can “set the tone of the debate” instead of being on the defensive with Democrats setting the tone. Rep. McMorris-Rogers said that these calls were having a “multiplier effect.”
I had the next question, asking if they could supply me with the numbers in terms of deficit to percentage of the budget. Rep. King said that he’d like to send us the numbers comparing President Obama’s first budget with the FY2008 budget, which was the smallest deficit of President Bush’s administration. According to my calculations, Bush’s smallest deficit was a little more than 5 percent of the budget whereas this budget will produce a deficit north of 30 percent of his budget.
Rep. King said that there are several demarcation points: the last Republican budget (for FY2007), the first Pelosi budget (my words, not Rep. King’s) to President Obama’s first budget. “All these things changed the parameters on how we define this.” The minute I get Rep. King’s information, I’ll post it immediately. According to Rep. King’s reports, the Obama deficit is approximately 23 percent of GDP.
Cross-posted at California Conservative