Jan 9, 2009 Political
The question posed in the title is a famous question (in various forms) posed by scam artists to tourists in the last century. I can’t imagine that someone would be stupid enough to actually bite on such a line but, as the saying goes, a sucker is born every minute.
Now Mayor Bloomberg of New York has prepared his list of items he wants Americans to buy for the people of his city. Bloomberg, the billionaire narcissist who went against the will of the people in order to seek a third term, is not alone as many city and state officials line up at the Congressional ATM.
Bloomberg is just the first to put together a list of specific items he wants to use the money for. He wants taxpayers from all over the country to pay for hospitals, schools, high speed internet access for the schools, and a black heritage cultural center. None of these things will benefit taxpayers from the other 49 states or the thousands of cities across the nation but he wants all of us to pay for them. Bloomberg is the modern day scam artist who wants you to pay for his infrastructure without the benefit of ownership.
Of course, no plea for money would be complete without the obligatory “it’s for the children” nonsense.
“We have to make the kind of investments for our future that will give our children a future,” Bloomberg said.
Bloomberg has tailored his requests to coincide with Obamas plan to create new jobs by rebuilding infrastructure. The story goes that Americans want the infrastructure upgraded and that they are willing to pay up to a 1% tax increase to get it done. Of course, 1% is no where near what the actual increases will be.
It is not the job of the federal government to spend taxpayer money on state projects unless the projects have some federal significance. The highway system is a federal system and the feds collect taxes to maintain the federal roadways. State roads are maintained by the state.
The schools and hospitals in New York are infrastructure items that will benefit the people of New York. There is no reason to spend federal tax dollars on them and the same holds true for all the other states whose officials are standing in line with their hands out.
Out of control spending is the fuel that supplied the fire of the economic problems we face today. We cannot fix the problem of spending beyond our means by spending more money. Even if we could, each state is responsible for its infrastructure projects.
I have long railed against pork projects that come from DC. I am appalled when I see lawmakers attach projects for their states to spending bills. Taxpayers from most other states have little use for the projects and will likely never, ever, use them or benefit from them.
The massive bailout that already passed and the even larger one looming on the horizon are nothing more than huge transfers of wealth. It is what Obama described as spreading the wealth and it will not work. From what I see, the entire mess has been nothing more than a huge pork project from the start.
And even if someone could somehow justify the spending on “the children” they would be at a loss to explain why taxpayer money should be spent on a black cultural center. This is abuse of power, abuse of taxpayer money and it is a fine example of how we got in this mess int he first place.
The politicians in DC and around the country do not, for the most part, have any concept of fiscal responsibility. Democrats, in particular, are poor managers of money. Most of the cities and states in dire financial trouble are run by Democrats and they have huge populations of people receiving social services (read taxpayer money).
The people who voted for Obama voted for change and the way he wants to spend money it is likely that is all they will have left.
Over regulation, poor regulation, greed, and government irresponsibility with our money is how we got in this mess and one thing is certain, more of that will damn sure not get us out of it.
If you believe that it will then I am selling a bridge you might be interested in.
Dec 22, 2008 Political
In the run up to the 2006 midterm elections the Democrats told us they had the solutions to the problems facing America. Vote for them, they said, because they can lower gas prices and fix the ailing economy (that wasn’t exactly ailing at the time). They were unable to accomplish this and they needed more power to right the ship of state. In 2008 they won even more seats and America elected a man whose citizenship is in question, all on the promise of hope and change.
Well, gas prices are the lowest they have been in years but they had to cause a complete financial meltdown to accomplish that little task. The Democrats set the table for the financial meltdown when people like Barney Frank, Christopher Dodd, and Barack Obama were on the payroll of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Despite at least 17 warnings by the Bush administration, these people continued to insist that all was well. It was, if you were one of their friends making millions of dollars working for Fannie and Freddie.
Now though, the Democrats actually won and they will have to make good on the promises that they can fix it all. They will have to live up to promises that they can fix the economy and get people back to work. But, in true Democratic fashion, they are now lowering the bar. Once self assured in their ability to repair what is broken, the Democrats are now saying that things will take a long time to mend and that the 800 BILLION dollar stimulus package they are working on might not exactly do much.
Well who would have known? The first stimulus did not work. The bailout did not work and there is no indication that throwing more money, money we don’t have I might add, at the problem will actually fix it. The Democrats realize that they fooled millions of people into voting for them and those people will expect results. The same Democrats who wanted something done NOW are saying it might take a while.
I never had any doubt it would take a while and I also knew that stimulus packages and bailouts would not solve any problems. The end result of all the spending is that we don’t know where the money went, how much was actually spent (and what the final tally will be), or where we will find the resources to pay it back.
During the Great Depression the government threw money around and tried creating jobs. This, among other things, prolonged the depression and made things much worse.
The free market system will work out problems but it has to be a free market. We cannot have the government making rules that run contrary to the principle of a free market. We cannot allow people who do not have the means to buy a home to actually buy one. We cannot make credit rules so lax that college kids can apply for credit cards and be approved even though they are saddled with debt and have little or no income. George Bush said he is abandoning free market principles in order to save the economy but abandoning those principles is what got us in this mess in the first place.
Democrats in Washington are still subscribing to the idea that they can intervene in a free market and make things right but they are also realizing that this tact is having little effect. Thus, they are pulling back from those things they once assured us rather than admit they knew not what they were talking about in the first place.
Someone once said that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result.
It would appear that the Democrats are insane.
Wall Street Journal
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