GOP budget hawks chicken out early

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Range Rover, Dec 16, 2010.


    GOP budget hawks chicken out early
    By: Joe Scarborough
    December 14, 2010 04:40 AM EST

    Well, that didn't take long.

    Less than a month after handing the president a shellacking, Republicans who ran against Obama's fiscal recklessness added another trillion dollars to America's debt.

    Even before being sworn in to start the 112th Congress, the GOP has become a co-conspirator in what Charles Krauthammer is calling the "swindle of the year"—a scheme that will "pump a trillion borrowed Chinese dollars into the U.S. economy over the next two years."

    It seems that the Pulitzer Prize winning columnist is one of the few conservatives left in Washington to give a damn about America's deficit crisis. He is certainly the only columnist who understands what we have been saying on "Morning Joe" for a week: that Barack Obama is about to pass another reckless stimulus bill. But this time, the same GOP leaders who once vilified the president as a socialist will be his closest allies.

    Krauthammer dismisses Obama's "newest free lunch" as little more than a second stimulus package that will "blow another $1 trillion hole in the budget."

    One GOP senator who voted against Obama's second stimulus plan said the vote was an easy one to take.

    "The debt can't just be something we talk about in our campaigns," Nevada's John Ensign told me after casting his no vote Monday night. "These deficits will destroy us. I just couldn't vote for new spending and new tax giveaways without a single offset."

    Oklahoma's Tom Coburn, Alabama's Jeff Sessions, South Carolina's Jim DeMint and Ohio's George Voinovich joined Ensign in voting against the budget busting stimulus plan.

    Aside from Krauthammer and the small group of deficit hawks, the rest of the Republican Party is marching in lockstep behind a stimulus plan that puts America deeper in debt than the stimulus scheme devised by Nancy Pelosi in 2009.

    All the president had to do to gain their support was wave tax cuts in front of Republican leaders and, like Pavlov's dogs, they began to drool. Once the salivating stops, America will be $1 trillion deeper in debt to China and our growing list of creditors.

    By now no one should be surprised by the Republican Party's dementia when dealing with the debt. After all, this is the same party who campaigned forever on fiscal restraint before turning a a $155 billion surplus and turned it into a $1 trillion dollar deficit.

    Like Senator Tom Coburn and a few conservative holdovers from the 1990s, I issued early warnings every step of the way.

    What is so disturbing six years later is how little things have changed in that time.

    This is what I wrote in 2004 in my book "Rome Wasn't Burnt in a Day":

    "If you want tax cuts, you get them. Want to increase defense spending to over $400 billion? Sure. How about an $8 trillion Medicare drug bill? We know it will bankrupt the system but we need those seniors voting for us. And why not keep conservatives happy by passing another tax cut? Maybe then they will forget their president teamed up with Ted Kennedy to pass the biggest education bureaucracy bill ever."

    Two years later in September 2006, I penned a piece for The Washington Post that is appropriate for President Obama today.

    "Our president was wrong to believe that the United States could fight a war, cut taxes and increase federal spending, all at once."

    In October 2006, I noted in Washington Monthly that Bush Republicans allowed the federal government to explode at record rates, with spending for the education bureaucracy up 101% under Bush, the Justice Department up 131%, Commerce up 82%, HHS up 81%, State up 80%, the Department of transportation up 65%, and the four agencies targeted for elimination by my 1994 class averaging 85% increases in Bush's first term.

    While I was reporting on the Bush Republicans' outrageous spending habits, Nancy Pelosi and her fellow Democrats were promising to put America's financial house in order.

    "Democrats are talking about no deficits — we're talking about fiscal responsibility," Pelosi said on the campaign trail in 2006. She bluntly declared that Democrats would "put an end to deficit spending."

    Of course we know how that story ended. For four years, Nancy Pelosi presided over the most fiscally reckless Congress in U.S. history.

    Like Republicans, Pelosi's Democrats also refused to heed warnings from the few remaining fiscal conservatives in Washington.

    Tax cuts, two wars, massive Pentagon budgets, budget busting bailouts, bloated agency increases, and unchecked entitlement growth were the norm under Speaker Pelosi's reign - whether Bush or Obama were sitting in the Oval Office.

    Following Barack Obama's victory in 2008, I wrote "The Last Best Hope," blasting the new president for continuing Bush's radical Keynesian approach to economic policy.

    "Mr. Obama chose to respond to a crisis brought on by too much spending and too much debt with even more spending and even more debt. Few in the national press noted the absurdity of the president trying to get out of debt by racking up historic deficits."

    Few still do.

    Instead of deciding this week to borrow another trillion dollars from China, Obama's new GOP friends could have offset Obama's second stimulus plan with longterm budget cuts. That would have sent a message to markets around the world that like Germany and Britain, the United States is ready to get its financial house in order.

    Paying for Stimulus II would have also sent a message to voters that Republicans finally mean what they say.

    But for now, neither Republicans nor Democrats seem particularly interested in saving this country from economic collapse. I wish both parties the best of luck in the 2012 elections. Judging from last week's pathetic performance, they will both need it.
  2. "Republicans who ran against Obama's fiscal recklessness added another trillion dollars to America's debt. "

    Why doesn't Joe bother to name them? He seems much more intent on painting a vague picture than he does on being bothered with details.
  3. Tsing Tao

    Tsing Tao

    first of all, range rover, let me congratulate you on another biased article that doesn't take into account democrats were also behind the deal - in fact, did you not just post an article how this deal is obama's win because it gets another stimulus package through?

    second, i will say that i am so angry at republicans for ignoring the message sent out in november to STOP FUCKING SPENDING. they obviously did not get it. it will be interesting to see what happens in the house, but i dont have high hopes.

    i expected this kind of crap from spendocrats, but not republicans. i am extremely disappointed.
  4. Tsing Tao

    Tsing Tao

    there is the roll call of who voted for it and who did not.

    i salute the 19 senators that stood up to their principles and voted against it. my suspicion is that the democrats that voted nay did so because they were against the tax cut portion of the bill, but even so, they stood on their principles and were not bribed by the pork laden earmarks (of which there are 6600 in this bill). even the bill itself is named "airport improvement" or something silly like that.
  5. I too congratulate those that voted against it, whether it was Dems not wanting to be held hostage, or Repubs wanting to stop the crazy spending.
    As an individual I just want the truth. You want to cut taxes for billionaires, go right ahead, just don't tell me that will create jobs. It doesn't, and it won't. You don't want to extend unemployment benefits and add to the deficit, neither do I. Which is why I would go to the financial institutions that created this unemplyoyment mess and say, pony up motherfuckers, you created this, you're paying for it. That, or meet your new bunkie, Bubba.
    At some point we need to hold the people that orchastrated this mess to some measure of accountability. To let them walk, and then pass judgement on the unemployed, most of whom are in that position through no fault of their own, is pure bullshit. If it's free money for everybody, then that means everybody, not just the rich guys. Long term, this policy of trying to buy our way out of this mess will bring dire consequences.

    Edit: While this article is from the Huff and Puff Post, it details the starke difference between the measure of accountability during the S&L crisis, and what is happening now. Thousands were proscecuted during ths S&L period. This time?
  6. All in all, not a bad post.
  7. 1.Yes democrats are behind the deal Tsing Tao,but for the most part democrats are open about being the party of tax and spend.Fiscal conservatism isn't a major principal for the democrats like it is the GOP

    2.I posted articles and opinions from many who see this as a win for Obama.I'm am still pissed that he once again caved to republicans and lectured and bashed democrats while doing so

    3.I don't see the article as biased,it was written by a former GOP congressmen who still identifies himself as a republican.Joe is a republican that I respect because he calls out GOP hypocrisy and he calls out when GOP members vote against republican principles like he did in this article.
  8. Tsing Tao

    Tsing Tao

    1. Agree.
    2. I understand.
    3. Biased was perhaps the wrong word. perhaps the author is just as pissed as I am about so called "party of fiscal conservative" crapping the bed once more. if so, then i get his point.
  9. The thing is thats what makes me angry with the GOP.I dont hate all GOP principles ,I hate the elected GOP officials who constantly betray them.In the past on this forum I have praised Bush Sr and I think he was a great President and great american hero. I voted for Jeb Bush and Charley Christ as Governor.Romney has a chance of getting my vote in 2012 if sticks to the principles he had as Governor of Mass.While Democrats also betray their principles,I think the GOP members do it more

    A few examples of what pisses me off about the GOP

    They rail against Obamacare,but Obamacare is a 90 % copy of Romneycare,a republican plan by a guy who is still a top republican.

    The GOP railed against Obamas stimulus,but I think every Republican Governor in the country took money from Obamas stimulus to balance their budgets

    Arizonas GOP Governor rails against Obama care,but recently said the people of Arizona should ask for money from Washington for Arizonas medicaid program,Obamacare does exactly that

    Republicans rail against Obama spending,but they agreed to Obama's 1 trillion dollar stimulus 2 as long as the rich keep their tax breaks

    I respect and would vote for and have voted for moderate Republicans like Bush Sr,Christ,Romney , Scarborough etc.The hypocrite and hard right I can not stand
  10. Although I am admittedly a bit left of center, I think your post is a good one.
    #10     Dec 16, 2010