By law, on Friday the executive must begin to cut $85 billion from federal spending. Though, as is his wont, the president is blaming the Republicans for what he claims is a draconian measure. No less a Washington chronicler of events than Bob Woodward of the Washington Post considers that a gross distortion of the truth
Lucianne.com characterizes the scare effort as threatening: "Dead babies in the water, poisoned milk, catburgers at Mickey Dee's -- anything is possible." That wisecrack's not far off the mark. Here's Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, chair of the DNC.
In August of last year, Investor's Business Daily reported on the cost to taxpayers of the unprecedented bailout of Chrysler and General Motors:
That IBD analysis of the cost to taxpayers of the GM bailout may be considerably overoptimistic. Charles Ortel reported this week that preliminary disclosures made by GM the week before, indicate GM is close to bankruptcy:
• SpectraWatt ($500,000)*
• Solyndra ($535 million)*
• Beacon Power ($43 million)*
• Nevada Geothermal ($98.5 million)
• SunPower ($1.2 billion)
• First Solar ($1.46 billion)
• Babcock and Brown ($178 million)
• EnerDel's subsidiary Ener1 ($118.5 million)*
• Amonix ($5.9 million)
• Fisker Automotive ($529 million)
• Abound Solar ($400 million)*
• A123 Systems ($279 million)*
• Willard and Kelsey Solar Group ($700,981)*
• Johnson Controls ($299 million)
• Brightsource ($1.6 billion)
• ECOtality ($126.2 million)
• Raser Technologies ($33 million)*
• Energy Conversion Devices ($13.3 million)*
• Mountain Plaza, Inc. ($2 million)*
• Olsen's Crop Service and Olsen's Mills Acquisition Company ($10 million)*
• Range Fuels ($80 million)*
• Thompson River Power ($6.5 million)*
• Stirling Energy Systems ($7 million)*
• Azure Dynamics ($5.4 million)*
• GreenVolts ($500,000)
• Vestas ($50 million)
• LG Chem's subsidiary Compact Power ($151 million)
• Nordic Windpower ($16 million)*
• Navistar ($39 million)
• Satcon ($3 million)*
• Konarka Technologies Inc. ($20 million)*
• Mascoma Corp. ($100 million)
A look at the large number of agencies and departments that make up the executive branch reveals that certainly far more drastic cuts that the Republicans propose could take place without harming essential services.
Heritage has also noted some other of the wasteful expenditures of this administration which preposterously argues we can't turn down even a small amount of the cash waterfall.
TSA is growing like Topsy (this year the figure in the budget for TSA is $7.65 billion) and increasingly it is behaving in idiotic ways, absolutely unrelated to sensible security measures. (Why is 9 ounces of a liquid okay onboard only if it is divided into three three-ounce bottles instead of one, for example? Why are 74-year-old passengers exempt from removing their shoes when 73 year olds are not? Why are handicapped persons asked to stand so that the airport owned and operated wheelchairs can be wanded?) This week, we watched a moronic TSA agent terrorizing a wheelchair-bound three-year-old.
We are regularly horrified by TSA's nonsensical rules and the officious, unthinking behavior of its agents. Why not let the airports and airlines handle this? It seems the only way to assure polite, efficient screening and true accountability.
And then there's FEMA, to give another example even low-information voters might recall. It mishandled Hurricane Andrew, the 2004 Southern Florida hurricanes, Hurricane Katrina, the Duma, Arkansas tornadoes, and now, apparently Hurricane Sandy. Isn't it time to concede the notion that the feds have this large a role to play in dealing with disasters is contrary to all evidence?
But instead of offering up some sensible cuts or ceasing to demonize those responsible enough to fight increasing federal programs and spending, our innumerate president offers up yet another grandiose plan to a broke nation. He's doubling down, proposing, even in the face of studies showing limited benefits for our $7 billion Head Start program, expanding pre-kindergarten programs. The Center for American Progress estimates that this initiative will cost an additional $98 billion over 10 years:
"This isn't a liberal or conservative thing," said Kirsten Powers, a Daily Beast columnist and Fox News contributor. "I think everybody wants to help our children do better in school (but) this doesn't seem to be the thing that's doing it."