Archives for July 2011

Another day, no budget deal or debt ceiling increase

With House Republicans planning to bring the “Cut, Cap and Balance” - a plan that would cut the deficit in half, cap spending at 18% of GDP and impose a Balanced Budget Amendment (BBA) - later today, President Barack Obama promised that he would veto it should it clear the Senate and come to his desk.

It’s hard to imagine that Obama would actually veto this plan should it pass, but the hurdle for “Cut, Cap and Balance” is the Senate. While Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV), who promised yesterday to keep the chamber in session until the debt ceiling is raised, may allow it to come up for a vote, the numbers just aren’t there to push it through. Still, Republicans in the Senate - including Mike Lee (R-UT), who just put out a new book on the need for the BBA - are making the case for passage:

“Only by restricting its Constitutional authority to engage in deficit spending will you get Congress to stop doing it or at least stop doing it to the reckless degree it has been,” Lee said.

One of the brains behind the Cut, Cap, and Balance Act, Lee and his allies are pushing hard for Congress to adopt a balanced budget amendment, which would prevent Congress from spending more than it gets in revenue.

Lee says now is the best time to pass such a measure, because while America is close to the breaking point, the country is not there yet.

Herman Cain: People Have A “Right” to Ban Mosques

Herman Cain is the GOP’s 2012 token Islamophobe. When asked if he would be comfortable with “appointing a Muslim either in your cabinet or as a federal judge” Cain gave an emphatic “no” and stated that he “will not” appoint a Muslim to any such position:

He later campaigned against a mosque being built in Tennessee, ironically citing the First Amendment:

“It is an infringement and an abuse of our freedom of religion,” he said. “And I don’t agree with what’s happening, because this isn’t an innocent mosque.”

Now Cain is stating that Americans “have a right” to ban mosques that they don’t like:

In an exchange on “Fox News Sunday,” the Republican presidential contender said that he sided with some in a town near Nashville who were trying to prevent Muslims from worshiping in their community.

White House continues Social Security scare tactic

Most of us following the budget debate know that President Barack Obama’s threat to hold Social Security payments hostage is empty. The Treasury Department will have the cash flow available to make these payments. Really what this fight over the budget has done more than anything else is expose the myth of the Social Security Trust Fund, but no one is paying attention to that.

The administration needs a scare tactic and they are taking full advantage of it. This weekend on CNN’s State of the Union, White House Budget Director Jacob Lew wouldn’t answer a direct question on prioritizing payments, including Social Security:

Want to spend more? Just raise your debt limit!

The folks over at Reason TV put together this short video back in March. It shows a family (the United States) that has nearly reached their credit limit because they have spent too much by money buying homes and bailing out banks. Instead of fixing the problem, the husband’s solution is to just “get more credit cards.”

Given the stalemate between the White House and Republicans, it’s looking like a real deal to address these problems won’t be reached and we’ll just see a capitulation to increase the debt ceiling and enable Washington to spend more.

No budget deal reached over the weekend

There was little news on the budget and debt ceiling front over the weekend. In fact, Republicans didn’t pay much attention to President Barack Obama’s demand for a solution to the stalemate by this past Saturday. Of course, the only solution the White House wants is one that involves tax hikes, which Republican have rejected; as Dan Mitchell says, Obama is only “flexible” is he gets what he wants.

The questionable McConnell plan, which has upset conservatives, still may be part of the deal that is worked out between the White House and Republicans. However, that deal isn’t going to prevent agencies from downgrading the nation’s credit rating.

The call for tax hikes has become all too frequent of a rallying point for the Left during this public debate. And while Obama would have us believe that 80% of Americans support such a move to solve the debt problem, such a claim is blatantly false:

“We shouldn’t be partisan, We should solve problems.”

Those were the words of President Obama in an interview with WSB-TV.  He was talking about the debt ceiling and budget negotiations, but that quote really stuck out to me.  You see, I agree with the statement.  However, I have to wonder if President Obama does.

This is the same man who told congressional Republicans that he won and that they should get over it.  For the record, there was no question that he won.  They were talking about how Republicans had issues with TARP II.  Glad to see he wasn’t being partisan then, but just solving problems.

I guess he wasn’t being partisan when he passed a massive health care overhaul that 54% of the American people didn’t want in the first place.  That number is virtually unchanged even now.  I’m sure though that it wasn’t partisanship, but solving problems.  What was the big problem facing the nation when health care reform was passed?  Oh yeah, the loss of so many jobs…most of which weren’t in health care in the first place.

The truth of the matter is that President Obama, like every president I can remember before him, is partisan.  So are the guys on the other side of the table.  It’s politics and that’s just how it works.  Do I agree that it shouldn’t be about partisanship?  Oh yeah.  It absolutely should be about solving problems…but that’s where the partisanship kicks in.

Statism and obesity

There are people who are called statists.  They believe in the power of the state over all other potential solutions.  Few people actually describe themselves as one, though they may take a thousand statist positions.  The latest statist position I’ve read about came via Doug Mataconis over at Outside the Beltway.  He posted about a Harvard study that advocates taking people’s kids away because the kids are to fat:

A group of Harvard University researchers are proposing that child welfare agencies be authorized to take severely obese children away from their parents:

As the Western world gets fatter and fatter, the solutions to slimming it down get ever more draconian. In Britain yesterday, the government issued guidelines saying “children under the age of 5, including babies who can’t walk yet, should exercise every day.” Today, in the States, a pair of Harvard scholars writing in the Journal of the American Medical Association advocate stripping away the custody rights of parents of super obese children. They’re for real!

Cartoon of the Day: Debt ceiling and drunk driving

I caught this on Twitter late last night (can’t remember who posted it, sorry), but it just about sums the debt ceiling debate.

debt ceiling and drunk driving

From each according to their ability…

President Obama wants your money.  Not exactly a groundbreaking revelation, I’m sure.  However, in recent comments, he seems to feel that if you have more money than you need, and someone else has a perceived “need”, then he should be just fine taking that money and giving it to that person.  Mike Brownfield, like myself, seems to not be in complete agreement with the President on this one:

Over the past several weeks, America has seen on grand display in Washington a singular mindset emanating from the White House: We must raise taxes so that we can keep on spending. This week, though, America was treated to something different—a glimpse inside President Barack Obama’s mind, a roadmap of his economic worldview. And what was revealed was a philosophy that is fundamentally at odds with America’s job creators.

That insight came during the President’s press conference on Monday in which he broached the subject of raising taxes as part of the debt limit deal:

And I do not want, and I will not accept, a deal in which I am asked to do nothing, in fact, I’m able to keep hundreds of thousands of dollars in additional income that I don’t need, while a parent out there who is struggling to figure out how to send their kid to college suddenly finds that they’ve got a couple thousand dollars less in grants or student loans.

Ron Paul hits the airwaves in Iowa and New Hampshire

Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX), who announced earlier this week that he wouldn’t run for another term in Congress, launched a six-figure airtime buy in Iowa and New Hampshire with an ad that is reminiscent of a movie trailer that criticizes Republicans for compromising on the debt ceiling.

 


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