Thursday, January 29, 2009

Massive Government Spending Program Just Passed

(actually, this photo is a bit of an exaggeration; Obama's right arm should be totally cut off - as I don't see how he has even tried to reach out to the right side.)

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 passed the House Wednesday by a vote of 244 to 188. Not a single House Republican voted for the Democrats’ economic stimulus plan and eleven Democrats also voted against it also. Thank your representatives for voting against it if they did, or tell them your disappointment if they supported it, (unfortunately - all of my blue state reps were in favor of it) :(

"H.R. 1 is the largest pork barrel spending bill in the history of our country. President Obama has said this bill will create four million new jobs. President Obama is under the impression that we can spend our way out of debt! That's like thinking an alcoholic can drink his way to sobriety!


  • $20 million "for the removal of small- to medium-sized fish passage barriers." (Pg. 45 of Senate Appropriations Committee report: "20,000,000 for the removal of small- to medium-sized fish passage barriers)
  • $400 million for STD prevention (Pg. 60 of Senate Appropriations Committee report: "CDC estimates that a proximately 19 million new STD infections occur annually in the United States ...The Committee has included $400,000,000 for testing and prevention of these conditions.")
  • $25 million to rehabilitate off-roading (ATV) trails (Pg. 45 of Senate Appropriations Committee report: "$25,000,000 is for recreation maintenance, especially for rehabilitation of off-road vehicle routes, and $20,000,000 is for trail maintenance and restoration")
  • $34 million to remodel the Department of Commerce HQ (Pg. 15 of Senate Appropriations Committee report: $34,000,000 for the Department of Commerce renovation and modernization")
  • $70 million to "Support Supercomputing Activities" for climate research (Pgs. 14-15 of Senate Appropriations Committee Report: $70,000,000 is directed to specifically support supercomputing activities, especially as they relate to climate research)
  • $150 million for honey bee insurance (Pg. 102 of Senate Appropriations Committee report: "The Secretary shall use up to $ 50,000,000 per year, and $150,000,000 in the case of 2009, from the Trust Fund to provide emergency relief to eligible producers of livestock, honey bees, and farm-raised fish to aid in the reduction of losses due to disease, adverse weather, or other conditions, such as blizzards and wildfires, as determined by the Secretary")" (info from American Family)

House Republicans United Against Massive Government Spending Program

Republicans say tax relief would work faster in getting money to businesses and working families. But on Wednesday, an alternative Republican proposal, heavy on tax cuts, was defeated 266-170.

Republicans have been vocal in their opposition to the huge spending plan, saying it won’t stimulate anything except the Democrat Party and more debt. The plan’s price tag is estimated in the $819-billion to $1-trillion range.

Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas) listed four reasons why he voted against it:
-- $80 billion for refundable tax-credits to individuals, even if they pay no taxes.
-- $1 billion for the 2010 census
-- $650 million for digital TV coupons.
-- $600 million for new cars for the federal government.

Rep. Mike Pence called it a partisan bill – “a wish list of longstanding liberal Democrat priorities that have little do with putting our economy back on its feet.”

“What does $50 million to the National Endowment for the Arts have to do with creating jobs?” Pence asked. “What is $400 million for climate change research going to do to put people back to work in Indiana? And what is $335 million for sexually transmitted disease education going to do to get this country working again?

“House Republicans will oppose this bill for one reason—it won’t work,” Pence said.

House Republican Leader John Boehner (Ohio) defended the “bipartisan rejection of a partisan bill.”

Boehner said House Republicans want to work with congressional Democrats on bipartisan legislation creates jobs: “Unfortunately, the trillion dollar government spending bill before the House today was not that plan,” he said. “It is time for Capitol Hill Democrats to finally work with Republicans on a job creation package that lets families and small businesses keep more of what they earn and that is supported by the bipartisan majority that the American people expect on an issue so important.”
Real tax cuts, not rebate-branded wealth distribution, stimulate economic growth and recovery.

In a report titled "Why Tax Rate Reductions Are More Stimulative Than Rebates: Lessons from 2001 and 2003," the Heritage Foundation analyzes the numbers. The 2001 tax "cuts," for example, centered on rebates. Yet, despite Washington's sending billions to Americans via $600 rebate checks, consumer spending grew only artificially, reaching seven percent in the fourth quarter of that year before dropping to 1.4 percent the following quarter. Meanwhile, fourth-quarter investment spending plummeted 23 percent, and economic growth measured just 1.6 percent.

The 2003 tax cuts, conversely, focused on structural cuts by reducing income, capital gains and dividend tax rates. In the six quarters following the cuts, GDP grew at an annual rate of 4.1 percent while the S&P 500 shot up 32 percent. Additionally, in the 13 post-cut quarters, non-residential fixed investment grew each quarter, and the economy added 5.3 million jobs.

Real tax cuts, not rebate-branded wealth distribution, stimulate economic growth and recovery. History is clearly the teacher, but most of the class isn't paying attention.

Send your two senators an e-mail and ask them to vote against H.R. 1 when the Senate votes.

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