Obama’s Lies About Deficits

Okay, how many of you were doubled over with laughter after President Obama made the following remark yesterday:

“We’re not going to be able to fall back into the same old habits,” Mr. Obama said. “The casual dishonesty of hiding irresponsible spending with clever accounting tricks, the costly overruns, the fraud and abuse, the endless excuses.”

This, coming from a President who forced a piece of legislation, crafted behind closed doors and without the input of the opposition party, through Congress and even broke his own promise of openess, transparency and a five-day window for the public to review legislation before he signs it into law.

And how about that “fraud and abuse” part. Did he not see the earmarks going to ACORN, the notorius voter fraud organization? Did he not notice other pork and wasteful spending in his porkulus package? And now, he expects us to believe that he is fiscally responsible? His next spending plan has over 9,000 earmarks in it!

How dumb does Barack Obama think were are? Only the most brain-washed partisan Democrats would believe Obama’s remarks.

Here’s some more idoicy from a man who graduated from an Ivy League school:

“If we confront this crisis without also confronting the deficits that helped cause it, we risk sinking into another crisis down the road,” the president warned, promising to cut the yearly deficit in half by the end of his four-year term. “We cannot simply spend as we please and defer the consequences.”

And yet, he had no problem signing into law a package that will have to be paid off by our children and grandchildren. Again, how stupid does he think we are?

More:

“We are paying the price for these deficits right now,” Obama said, estimating the country spends $250 billion — one in every ten dollars of taxpayer money — in interest on the national debt. “I refuse to leave our children with a debt that they cannot repay.”

But that is precisely what the President is doing. He is simply trying to lay the blame at someone else’s feet. I don’t buy it. After that porkulus/spendulus bill passed, the Dems now own this economy. They have no one to blame but themsleves and they know it. That is why Obama and the Dems are scrambling to pass the buck so that their popularity doesn’t take too much of a hit.

They say that actions speak louder than words. Right now, Obama’s words are being drowned out by his actions and the actions of his socialist allies in Congress. He is lying to us and the Dems are hoping that you and I will buy it hook, line and sinker.

I’m not that blind. I see what is really happening and no amount of spin or lies from the Oval Office and the Democrat controlled Congress will ever change the truth.

You can access the complete article on-line here:

Obama Pledges Decrease In Deficit — After Increase (More Than Doubling It)
Associated Press via NewsMax.com
February 23, 2009

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53 Responses

  1. The problem with We The People is that we ARE that stupid. We regularly accept the lies of politicians by getting annoyed, yet electing them despite this. We are more interested in style nowadays than substance as evidenced by our last election cycle. Because of this, politicians feel that they have to be less careful, and have become more brazen in their disregard for the public and our future.

  2. Don’t you hate it that he’s absolutely right?

    Reference those Acorn earmarks if you can. That’s not the sort of statement you should make without reference to the original document.

  3. He is not in the least unpopular, nor are his ideas. FOX (!!!) just said his popularity was greater than Reagan’s at his peak. So sorry.

    He is doing the right thing, as is well documented if you just read the literature, but never mind.

    And your references do not show at all that the money is going to Acorn. They just assume it will. It is totally wrong to make such accusations before the money has gone anywhere.

    • Less than 37% supported the porkulus/spendulus package. I didn’t say anything about his popularity, I said the porkulus was unpopular and Obama knows it and that is why he is trying to shift the blame for his own doubling of the deficit.

      The earmark money will go to ACORN and it will be used to perpetuate more voter fraud in an effort to get more socialists like Obama elected. Obama will make sure of it. That is what leftist socialists do. Otherwise, why would ACORN register names like Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck and proclaim them to be Democrats?

  4. By law, as you well know, Acorn is obligated to submit every voter registration application it receives. If it did otherwise, it would be acting unlawfully. It is not Acorn’s job to determine which ones are valid, nor should it be Acorn’s job.

    Now, on to the rest. Less that 37% support the stimulus bill exactly as it is. That is less than 37% support every single bit of it. This is normal for every extensive bill. However, every single measure that remains in the bill was strong enough to receive a large majority of support, or it wouldn’t be there.

    I challenge you to give me one measure that is in the bill that you consider pork, and I will show you how it will serve to stimulate the economy in multiple ways.

    • Here is a list of pork-projects. It is not complete. There are more than this:

      $44 million for construction, repair and improvements at US Department of Agriculture facilties
      $209 million for work on deferred maintenance at Agricultural Research Service facilities
      $245 million for maintaining and modernizing the IT system of the Farm Service Agency
      $175 million to buy and restore floodplain easements for flood prevention
      $50 million for “Watershed Rehabilitation”
      $1.1 billion for rural community facilities direct loans
      $2 billion for rural business and industry guaranteed loans
      $2.7 billion for rural water and waste dispoal direct loans
      $22.1 billion for rural housing insurance fund loans
      $2.8 billion for loans to spur rural broadband
      $150 million for emergency food assistance
      $50 million for regional economic development commissions
      $1 billion for “Periodic Censuses and Programs”
      $350 million for State Broadband Data and Development Grants
      $1.8 billion for Rural Broadband Deployment Grants
      $1 billion for Rural Wireless Deployment Grants
      $650 million for Digital-to-Analog Converter Box Program
      $100 million for “Scientific and Technical Research and Services” at the National Institute of Standards And Technology
      $30 million for necessary expenses of the “Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership”
      $300 million for a competitive construction grant program for research science buildings
      $400 million for “habitat restoration and mitigation activities” at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
      $600 million for “accelerating satellite development and acquisition”
      $140 million for “climate data modeling”
      $3 billion for state and local law enforcement grants
      $1 billion for “Community Oriented Policing Services”
      $250 million for “accelerating the development of the tier 1 set of Earth science climate research missions recommended by the National Academies Decadal Survey.”
      $50 million for repairs to NASA facilities from storm damage
      $300 million for “Major Research Insrumentation program” (science)
      $200 million for “academic research facilities modernization”
      $100 million for “Education and Human Resources”
      $400 million for “Major Research Equipment and Facilities Construction”
      $4.5 billion to make military facilities more energy efficient
      $1.5 billion for Army Operation and Maintenance fund
      $624 million for Navy Operation and Maintenance
      $128 million for Marine Corps Operation and Maintenance
      $1.23 billion for Air Force Operation and Maintenance
      $454 million to “Defense Health Program”
      $110 million for Army Reserve Operation and Maintenance
      $62 million for Navy Reserve Operation and Maintenance
      $45 million for Marine Corps Reserve Operation and Maintenance
      $14 million for Air Force Reserve Operation and Maintenance
      $302 million for National Guard Operation and Maintenance
      $29 million for Air National Guard Operation and Maintenance
      $350 million for military energy research and development programs
      $2 billion for Army Corps of Engineers “Construction”
      $250 million for “Mississippi River and Tributaries”
      $2.2 billion for Army Corps “Operation and Maintenance”
      $25 million for an Army Corps “Regulatory Program”
      $126 million for Interior Department “water reclamation and reuse projects”
      $80 million for “rural water projects”
      $18.5 billion for “Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy” research in the Department of Energy. That money includes:
      $2 billion for development of advanced batteries
      $800 million of that is for biomass research and $400 million for geothermal technologies
      $1 billion in grants to “institutional entities for energy sustainability and efficiency”
      $6.2 billion for the Weatherization Assistance Program
      $3.5 billion for Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grants
      $3.4 billion for state energy programs
      $200 million for expenses to implement energy independence programs
      $300 million for expenses to implement Energy efficient appliance rebate programs including the Energy Star program
      $400 million for expenses to implement Alternative Fuel Vehicle and Infrastructure Grants to States and Local Governments
      $1 billion for expenses necessary for advanced battery manufacturing
      $4.5 billion to modernize the nation’s electricity grid
      $1 billion for the Advanced Battery Loan Guarantee Program
      $2.4 billion to demonstrate “carbon capture and sequestration technologies”
      $400 million for the Advanced Research Projects Agency (Science)
      $500 million for “Defense Environmental Cleanup”
      $1 billion for construction and repair of border facilities and land ports of entry
      $6 billion for energy efficiency projects on government buildings
      $600 million to buy and lease government plug-in and alternative fuel vehicles
      $426 million in small business loans
      $100 million for “non-intrusive detection technology to be deployed at sea ports of entry
      $150 million for repair and construction at land border ports of entry
      $500 million for explosive detection systems for aviation security
      $150 million for alteration or removal of obstructive bridges
      $200 million for FEMA Emergency Food and Shelter program
      $325 million for Interior Department road, bridge and trail repair projects
      $300 million for road and bridge work in Wildlife Refuges and Fish Hatcheries
      $1.7 billion for “critical deferred maintenance” in the National Park System
      $200 million to revitalize the National Mall in Washington, D.C.
      $100 million for National Park Service Centennial Challenge programs
      $200 million for repair of U.S. Geological Survey facilities
      $500 million for repair and replacement of schools, jails, roads, bridges, housing and more for Bureau of Indian Affairs
      $800 million for Superfund programs
      $200 million for leaking underground storage tank cleanup
      $8.4 billion in “State and Tribal Assistance Grants”
      $650 million in “Capital Improvement and Maintenance” at the Agriculture Dept.
      $850 million for “Wildland Fire Management”
      $550 million for Indian Health facilties
      $150 million for deferred maintenance at the Smithsonian museums
      $50 million in grants to fund “arts projects and activities which preserve jobs in the non-profit arts sector threatened by declines in philanthropic and other support during the current economic downturn” through the National Endowment for the Arts
      $1.2 billion in grants to states for youth summer jobs programs and other activities
      $1 billion for states in dislocated worker employment and training activities
      $500 million for the dislocated workers assistance national reserve
      $80 million for the enforcement of worker protection laws and regulations related to infrastructure and unemployment insurance investments
      $300 million for “construction, rehabilitation and acquisition of Job Corps Centers”
      $250 million for public health centers
      $1 billion for renovation and repair of health centers
      $600 million for nurse, physician and dentist training
      $462 million for renovation work at the Centers for Disease Control
      $1.5 billion for “National Center for Research Resources”
      $500 million for “Buildlings and Facilties” at the National Institutes of Health in suburban Washington, D.C.
      $700 million for “comparative effectiveness research” on prescription drugs
      $1 billion for Low-Income Home Energy Assistance
      $2 billion in Child Care and Development Block Grants for states
      $1 billion for Head Start programs
      $1.1 billion for Early Head Start programs
      $100 million for Social Security research programs
      $200 million for “Aging Services Programs”
      $2 billion for “Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology”
      $430 million for public health/social services emergency funds
      $2.3 billion for the Centers for Disease Control for a variety of programs
      $5.5 billion in targeted education grants
      $5.5 billion in “education finance incentive grants”
      $2 billion in “school improvement grants”
      $13.6 billion for Individuals with Disabilities Education Act
      $250 million for statewide education data systems
      $14 billion for school modernization, renovation and repair
      $160 million for AmeriCorps grants
      $400 million for the construction and costs to establish a new “National Computer Center” for the Social Security Administration
      $500 million to improve processing of disability and retirement claims
      $920 million for Army housing and child development centers
      $350 million for Navy and Marine Corps housing and child development centers
      $280 million in Air Force housing and child development centers
      $3.75 billion in military hospital and surgery center construction
      $140 million in Army National Guard construction projects
      $70 million in Air National Guard construction projects
      $100 million in Army Reserve construction projects
      $30 million in Navy Reserve construction projects
      $60 million in Air Force Reserve construction projects
      $950 million for VA Medical Facilities
      $50 million for repairs for military cemeteries
      $120 million for a backup information management facility for the State Department
      $98 million for National Cybersecurity Initiative
      $3 billion for “Grants-in-Aid for Airports”
      $300 million for Indian Reservation roads
      $300 million for Amtrak capital needs
      $800 million for national railroad assets or infrastructure repairs, upgrades
      $5.4 billion in federal transit grants
      $2 billion in infrastructure development for subways and commuter railways
      $5 billion for public housing capital
      $1 billion in competitive housing grants
      $2.5 billion for energy efficiency upgrades in public housing
      $500 million in Native American Housing Block Grants
      $4.1 billion to help communities deal with foreclosed homes
      $1.5 billion in homeless prevention activities
      $79 billion in education funds for states

      Unless you happen to live somewhere near one of these projects, your chance of seeing any of this money is slim to none. These are all short-term deals and when the money runs out, the jobs go away. This porkulus bill does not do anything to ecourage long term investment which means that there won’t be any long-term job creation coming out of it. In other words, Obama and the socialists in Congress will have to enact more deficit spending (they have a new bill that will cost us a half-trillion dollars in the works right now) and after they ram that through, Obama will once again be on the campaign trail trying to convince people that the deficits are someone else’s fault. That is what socialists do.

      In fact, the way it is written is such that once the money is gone, Congress will have to go back and legislate more pork-spending. The cycle will be thus: Pork Spending -> Money runs out -> More pork spending -> Money runs out -> More pork spending -> Money runs out -> ad infinitum. The only thing that will break this cycle is when the government can no longer borrow money against the future. And, if governments like China or Saudi Arabia come and demand the cash value of the U.S. Treasury bonds they’ve been buying, our economy could collapse.

      Socialism is a disaster. It always has been and always will be. That is why socialists like Obama have to lie about their policies and try to put the blame on others. They know the truth and the American people are starting to learn the truth as well:

      One month in, Barack Obama’s approval slips, disapproval doubles

      That popularity will slip even further when the negative effects of this porkulus package begin to take hold of our economy, as reported by the Congressional Budget Office. How can you call it a “stimulus” when it is going to cause the economy to shrink in the long run?

  5. I’m not going to go through them one by one, especially since you gave no reason for believing any one of these is pork, so I assume you just took the word of whoever provided that list to you that they were all pork, which is a lazy way of thinking.

    So, I’ll take the one in the middle of that list. To manage that without counting the number of items, I reduced the window to 50%, estimated the middle of the list, and clicked on one of the entries, which at 50% was too small to read.

    That entry is:
    $800 million of that is for biomass research and $400 million for geothermal technologies

    Almost too easy. Biomass research makes a start of bringing the US up to date with the rest of the first world nations in the area of alternative energy technology. Doing that research requires employing a whole range of people, everyone from farm laborers to research scientists, scattered across the US for the research to be of the most advantage. The money for the materials for the project will be spent locally as will the salaries of the people doing the research, benefiting any number of local businesses and causing more people to be employed within them. The benefit of that research comes to everyone in the country as it reduces the country’s dependence on oil and makes it more energy efficient, while in addition reducing the amount of biomass that goes into dumps, and thus the money to be spent on handling those materials in dumps. As those technologies are applies, as they have been in other countries, homes can be heated practically for free, for example, using sawdust from sawmills and the waste biomass of farms remaining after harvest. The installation of such systems employs a whole raft of people in a totally new industry. Those households will spend the money they would have spent on oil, money that would mostly have gone overseas, but will now be spent domestically, benefitting domestic businesses. Note that none of the jobs created can be outsourced now or on the future so these new jobs are permanent jobs. The benefits may well be felt for centuries as the world WILL run out of oil.

    How’s that?

  6. Furthermore, Euro-style socialism is not a disaster. Denmark, one of the most socialized countries, not only has the happiest people in the world but has the best business climate in the world as judged by Forbes and The Economist. It also has equal economic freedom as the US, greater freedom of the press, is more democratic and has less corruption. The references for all of these are in my posts on my blog about Denmark. My blog is http://www.djcnor.wordpress.com

  7. dcjnor,

    My problem with ACORN is not so much the voter fraud angle, although I do think they are willfully inept there. My problem is that the organization is blatantly political. In the last election you could pull up videos of ACORN leaders pushing for one person, or that person’s party consitently. Once this happens, they need their funding pulled — no matter who they support.

    Your contention that 37% support the bill “exactly as it is” in incorrect. 37% support it overall (as a whole). 43% oppose it… not every little bit, but the bill as a whole. That means more Americans think it is quite flawed, and therefor it has NOT received “a large majority of support”, in fact, it’s received a minority.

    Now I believe infrastructure spending should be part of this, or any stimulus bill as it creates quick jobs, and performs a service for the country that businesses can not. BUT, money going to a hig-speed rail from Vegas (Harry Reid’s region) to Disneyland? Come on. Ridership on rail is highest in the northeast, and is woefully inadequate. Maybe THAT should be the focus. But pork is the legalized, quiet kickback, and Reid seems to be getting his there… pork. Carbon-capture projects? Pork. $50million for the arts. $1billion for the census. Tax breaks for golf carts? Polar Ice-breakers? Pork, pork, pork. Any of these may cause SOME stimulation, but not enough to justify the expense. Most of these items should be in a regular spending bill, and voted on accordingly.

  8. Shall I do the highspeed rail between Vegas and Disneyland as well? I find that one pretty easy, too, because I live in Europe. Europeans are used to the presence of good public transportation. Because the US is a first world nation, richer than their nations, they assume it will have deent public transportation for tourists. Both Las Vegas and DisneyLand are of high interest to international tourists, who will not make many trips to the US. They do have much longer vacations than Americans, usually 4 weeks minimum, and try to see as much as they can in that one visit. They often focus on the west as it is so different in landscape from Europe and has totally unique features like the Grand Canyon and Indians. They WILL use it and will spend. Building such a railway will employ many people. Remember, the first transcontinental railroad was built by the government long before it could be expected to be cost effective. So already, it demands materials which will be supplied by US businesses, stimulating them and causing people to be hired, it demands workmen to build it who will spend their salaries locally and benefit all kinds of businesses, it promotes the hiring of many people to cater to the tourist trade, a business that by definition cannot be outsourced, so all those jobs are permanent, and those benefits go on for as many years as there are tourists in the west.

    • djcnor wrote:

      “Both Las Vegas and DisneyLand are of high interest to international tourists, who will not make many trips to the US.”

      And you have proven my point that it is a pork project. This little pet project of Harry Reid’s will generate a few jobs between California and Navada, but it will not help the rest of the nation which has to pay for it. It will not help create jobs in the general economy and once the project is finished, all those construction jobs disappear. Further, the project will probably demand even more taxpayer funding just to maintain it over the years and that will not help the economy at all since it takes more money away from the taxpayer. It is nothing more than a short-term deal that will not help in the long term. If it was such a good idea, a private entity would have done it by now. But it isn’t a good idea. It is pork.

      You also wrote:

      “Remember, the first transcontinental railroad was built by the government long before it could be expected to be cost effective. ”

      And given the fact that Amtrak hasn’t been able to turn a profit, it still isn’t cost-effective. Once again, you get short term local gain at the expense of long-term general loss. Nothing but pork.

  9. Yes, there are likely to have been a few bad apples in Acorn, as there are in any organization. That’s not news.

    I already answered your 37% business sufficiently. The bill is made up of items that each could get more than sufficient support, or they wouldn’t have made it into the final bill.

    • djcnor, those items made it into the bill because it was crafted behind closed doors and input from the Republicans was denied by the Democrats. In other words, most of it was done in secret. That was the only way the Dems could put all of this pork in there and pass it before the American people could read through the whole thing and figure out what was going on.

      You did not answer the 37% at all. People are still discovering what was put into the this bill because it was passed before even the members of Congress had any chance to fully read through it. As such, there is growing unrest about what was put in that bill and people are growing more discontented as they learn more about it.

      All those items I listed were pork projects that won’t produce any long-term stimulation and once the money spent on them is gone, the jobs will be gone too. Most of those projects, even your bio-mass example, will be wasted money. This wasn’t a bill about stimulating the economy (even the Congressional Budget Office admits that it will shrink our economy) it was about paying off political allies with taxpayer dollars.

      And to top it all off, Obama feels the need to lie about the deficit in order to defend himself.

  10. It’s not the few bad apples, it’s the leadership and structure that make it problematic. As the leadership and structuring openly benefit one political party, it is not deserving of federal funds period.

    No, you didn’t touch my “37% business” as your point was off-base: The question wasn’t “Do you feel the stimulus bill is perfect in every way”. It was “do you support the stimulus bill”. People support flawed bills regularly. What it means is that more people were against the bulk of the bill than were for it.

    And you find it pretty easy to try to justify to Americans that we should build high-speed rail so you Europeans can have train service from Vegas to Disney and see the topography and Indians? No, we don’t build it so Europeans can come. And most Europeans come to our east coast as there is more of our history and it’s a lot shorter ride… hence it would be far better ROI on the east coast… at least for the Europeans. But Vegas to Disney would be built, and then be a cost drain to the states and federal government that would then have to support it. The stimulus is not supposed to cause long-term burden or damage.

  11. LOUDElf

    Yes, I did touch your 37%. The question is effectively ” do you favor the whole of it”. Granted the question should have been more specific. And actually, a majority favor the stimulus package. Support has risen with time as people found out what was in it.

    http://www.cnn.com/2009/POLITICS/02/09/poll.obama.stimulus/index.html

    http://theplumline.whorunsgov.com/stimulus-package/polls-support-for-stimulus-package-rises/

    As for the Las Vegas/LA train. We’re not building it for the tourists. We’re building it for the tourist to benefit us by spending in the US! Las Vegas and LA are the #4 and #5 US tourism destinations.

    http://www.expediatravels.co.uk/Top-10-US-Destinations.html?A8ID=a02_k9_expedia_us_g0045&gclid=CI2pgdWL9pgCFQpNQwodtXvl0wdestinations.

    The East Coast, which has destinations 1,7, and 10 already has decent public transportation.

    Tourism jobs cannot be outsourced. They are permanent and they bring in foreign money decreasing the imbalance of trade.

  12. 84 rules,

    I just showed how two of those would produce long term benefit and stimulus. Do I have to do each and every one? I can.

    You give absolutely no reasons for believing that the projects I have gone into would be wasted money. If you believe so, give your reasons, please.

    And Obama can’t have lied about the deficit yet. He said what he thinks he can do. It remains to be seen whether he can do that, and a part of what will determine that is the amount of cooperation he gets from Republicans. That’s not a lie, even if he doesn’t achieve it. It’s a confident prediction that remains to be achieved or not.

  13. 84 rules,

    No, I have explained why the train is needed to bring in foreign visitors and gain the best benefit from their visits. By the way all tourism along that route will benefit, and there is a lot of it. As gas becomes more expensive, more and more people will pay attention to whether a destination has convenient and useful public transportation options, which can be much less expensive than renting a car.

    The construction jobs disappear, but the maintenance and tourism jobs continue forever. They cannot be outsourced.

    Amtrak is not really practical except on the East Coast where it is very much used and is profitable. Believe me, more than one European has expressed to me their amazement to find that there were whole states unaccessable by train. For a first world country, however large, that’s very very backward. India is the same size and manages it, and they are much much poorer.

    • djcnor,

      You made a false assumption in your analysis. You assumed that the train from Vegas to Disney would be a self-sufficient entity in which the foreign tourist trade alone would pay for it and its lifetime maintenance needs. You are wrong. Such trains will require government support (i.e. money confiscated from taxpayers) to keep running, just as Amtrak needs government money or it would go out of business. That represents a net loss which means there in no return on investment and no net growth in the economy. It will lose money right from the start.

  14. No, you’re making an assumption. If Europe can do it, why can’t the US? That’s a much traveled route, and there is really no reason why it can’t be made profitable.

    Amtrak is profitable along much traveled routes, but overall is not profitable. The government contributes some in order to keep less traveled routes operating. It’s a negotiation that takes place in all privatized public transit between the provider and the region served, and it can be made to work.

    • djcnor,

      Europe did NOT do it. European Rails still have to take in govenrment subsidies (i.e. taxpayer dollars) to continue running.

      “Rail is heavily subsidized,” says University of Paris economist Rémy Prud’Homme. “Users pay about half the total cost of providing the service.” Prud’Homme estimates that rail service in the EU-15 receives about 68 billion euros—or about $100 billion—of subsidies each year.

      If the European rail system was so profitable, why the need for subsidies? The fact that it is so heavily subsidized shows that it is a drain on the economy, not a benefit.

      Cato Institute Analysis of October 31, 2008

  15. Again, certain routes are, other routes aren’t. Governmet subsidizes the routes it wants maintained even when they are not profitable FOR THE RAILROAD. But that is not the total sum of profitability. For example, if a route does not get enough customers to pay the cost of running the railroad, but results in enough greater patronage to businesses in the served destinations of the region or enables the workers of that region to have more opportunities for employment , or enables local businesses to more easily attract prime employees for whom having easy access to the other end of the line is desirable (etc. etc.), a government can perfectly validly decide that the benefits of having the line run outweigh the cost in subsidy needed to accomplish that. In Europe, even major corporations sometimes contribute to public transit lines that serve their workers (example, Novo Nordisk in Denmark). Things are interconnected and are best thought of in that way rather than in isolation.

  16. djcnor,

    In America, we know government is not effecient, hence the saying “close enough for government work”. Another saying I’ve always loved is “If you rob Peter to pay Paul, you can always depend on the support of Paul. Keeping these two thoughts in mind, you might see why Americans like myself are ultra-wary of a bungling government that is using money from one group to support another group’s convenience in order to get them dependent and constantly voting for them.

    Remember, most of Europe that has extensive rail, has much higher population density than that of the US. Our citizens have a choice: Move toward the services, or live with less. With more government involvement will come increased cost. Increased cost means someone has to pay for it. Paying more and more into an inept and often corrupt organization is not usually a step toward genius.

  17. You Americans “know” a lot of stuff that simply is not borne out by facts. Aphorisms are not facts. You must come up with more of an argument than that. Perhaps some data, and data is not anecdotes.

    You have insulted all those people who work for the government and do a good job, and they are by far a majority of government workers. In fact, since those same folks would often be paid more in the same jobs by private employers, they are a bargain for you.

    Meanwhile, that most socialist country, Denmark, not only has the best business climate in the world, as judged by both Forbes and The Economist, and the happiest people in the world. Nearly all the first world nations of Europe have higher quality of life than the US. Government does work when the citizens are not apathetic, and guess what, voter turn out parallels tax rates.

    Now, please chek the population density in the area between LA and Vegas.

    http://www.worldbook.com/wb/media?id=mp001606

    http://www.worldbook.com/wb/media?id=mp001629

    And let’s look at Europe’s

    http://maps.howstuffworks.com/europe-population-density-map.htm

    Care to try again?

    • djcnor,

      LOUDelf is right. Government is very inefficient no matter what country your in or what endeavor the government undertakes. Look at how government health care gets rationed in nations that have socialized medicine. Certain people (the elderly, the handicapped, etc.) are routinely denied health care because government is so wasteful that there isn’t enough to go around. That’s why patients from Canada and Great Britain come to the U.S. so often; so that private practices here can give them the medical treatment their own governments denied to them.

      You can also look at the government’s efforts to rebuild after hurricane Katrina here in New Orleans. It is almost four years later and they have spent over $200 billion to repair $41 billion in damages and are demanding even more money for the effort. But, when storms hit the midwest states and caused massive flooding, it was private entities that went in and cleaned things up for a fraction of the cost of what the government would have needed to do the same job.

      No, we are not insulting government workers, most of them insult us by pretending to do work that actually benfits someone somewhere.

      BTW, your comment about Denmark being the “most socialist” country is incorrect. I checked your claims about the business climate there. It has nothing to do with socialism. It has everything to do with moving away from socialism and towards capitalism. It turns out that back in 2004, the Danish government cut people’s taxes in a very dramatic fashion. In fact, Denmark did the exact opposite of what Barack Obama is about to do here in the U.S.

      It is those capitalistic tax cuts that make for such a good business environment in Denmark, not socialism.

      If socialism was so good for business, the former Soviet Union would still be around today and people would be trying to sneak into that country, not escape from it.

      The Danish Tax Cut 2004
      Skatteministeriet
      July 13, 2004

      I have a lot more respect for that most capitalist country Denmark now. They hit on the right idea for turning an economy around.

  18. No, she is not right.

    I live in one of those countries with socialized medicine. In fact, I live in the country whose socialized medical system is generally acknowledged to be one of the worst in Europe, the UK’s. Do we wait for medical care? No. We are guaranteed to be seen by our GP within 48 hours of asking. We are in our 50’s. We have never had better treatment, so much better than we will fight to stay out of the US until its system approaches the one we have experienced here. You can read my blog for some of our stories, like the time we had an emergency that ended up with one of us in the hospital for a week, followed by months of daily home visits tapering down to monthly and then to just continuing prescriptions. The only thing there was any cost for at all was the prescriptions, $60 for 3 months no matter how many or what prescriptions you have. Our neighbor waited 1 month for a hip transplant. No, people are not routinely turned away in the UK. That is a lie Americans are fed.

    New Orleans was an anomaly thoroughly bungled by a thoroughly incompetent administration.

    I asked for some evidence to back up your opinion of government workers. You offered none at all. Opinion is not an argument.

    Yes Denmark’s success does have a lot to do with its socialism. What prevents Americans from starting businesses? They’re worried about putting the family’s housing and their kids higher ed money at risk. They’re worried about being able to afford private healthcare. Danes don’t have to worry about any of those, and was doing well before 2004. By the way, did you note what Danish taxes were cut to while you were researching. Obama’s plans don’t take us anywhere near that. In fact, I guess you missed that he’s cutting taxes for 95% of Americans.

    As for your mention of Russia, once more, Euro-style socialism is not the same as Russian-style communism. It isn’t even close. It doesn’t take away ownership, nor does it over-control what is produced, or any of the other things that made it fail.

    Lord, I wish Americans would spend some time living in other countries before they swallowed the lies about what life is like in these other countries.

    • djcnor wrote:

      “Obama’s plans don’t take us anywhere near that. In fact, I guess you missed that he’s cutting taxes for 95% of Americans.”

      Your post was so full of errors that I didn’t know where to begin. Let’s start with your assertion that I’ve quoted above. If you knew the first thing about our government and tax system, you would know that less than 50% of Americans actually pay taxes. True, taxes are confiscated out of our paychecks, but most Americans get that back when they file their returns, and a very high percentage actually get more back through the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) than they had taken away. I guess you missed the fact that most workers aren’t really paying taxes. They are getting welfare checks at the expense of other taxpayers. (Socialist redistribution and all that.) Obama’s claims about cutting taxes are nothing but smoke and mirrors for more socialism.

      So, before you berate Americans for not knowing about other countries, perhaps you should educate yourself about America. That one statment above showed how deep your own ignorance is.

      And your assertion about socialized health care being the end all, please go to the following website and explain why so many people in Canada, Great Britain and other socialized medicine countries have so many horror stories about how the governments that promised them full coverage are denying them treatment, many of them for life-threatening illnesses.

      BigGovHealth

      And no, that website is not my “opinion.” It is about facts researched and verified by a non-partisan public interest group.

  19. No, that site is about anecdotes. Collected anecdotes, but not real data, which comes from gathering all the info. No system is perfect. However, when things go wrong in the UK, it is reported by major media, because it shouldn’t, folks are called on the carpet and policies are changed and adjusted with a citizen board having a lot of power in that. Count up the numbers of anecdotes on that site and compare it to the number of citizens in the UK and Canada who have had no complaints. You’ll find it much less. a comparison of nations has found the US system 37th in quality.

    I do know about the US and its taxes. By the way, did you follow your own site down to where it compare the tax rates of many countries, especially Europe to US tax rates? You should.

    You should also be able to provide a reference for that stuff about 50% of Americans paying no taxes at all. Can you? I doubt it.

    • Wow! You are the type of person who dismisses people suffering dying at the hands of socialized medicine as “anecdotes?” If private insurance providers here in the U.S. denied the treatments that Canada and Euroipean nations are denying to patients, the insurance companies would get sued out of business. But no such lawsuits are allowed under socialized medicine which means that the government can pick and chose with impunity who will live and who will die.

      I know no system is perfect, but the point you are completely ignoring is that people who are supposed to be taken care of by the governments that have promised universal coverage are coming here to the United States to get treatment that their governments are denying them! And you think that is “anecdotal?” No! It is fact. “Medical Travel Agencies” are a cottage industry in Canada.

      Over half of the cancer patients at the Mayo Clinic are Canadian. Why? Because the NHS in Canda has denied these people treatment (despite their physician’s pleas) and effectively sentenced them to die. Thus, they come to the U.S. in order to have a chance at living. Of course, you consider that “anecdotal” while these people consider it a chance for life.

      These are not anecdotes. These are facts. If you happen to be able to obtain free health care anytime you want, consider yourself lucky. The moment someone in you bureaucracy determines (independent of your physician) that your condition in a “hopeless diagnosis,” I bet you’d be on the next plane to the U.S to get the treatment that the providers of universal health care will deny to you.

  20. Also, note these references which show that satisfaction with the healthcare system in the US is much much more than in any country with universal healthcare.

    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,136990,00.html

    http://www.ecosante.org/OCDEENG/67.html

    http://www.huppi.com/kangaroo/L-healthcare.htm

  21. And here’s a rather extensive and detailed discussion concerning that talking point about 50% of Americans paying no tax at all. It gives the source, so you needn’t bother finding it.

    http://www.ajc.com/blogs/content/shared-blogs/ajc/bookman/entries/2008/10/07/the_half_of_americans_pay_no_i.html

    • Jay Bookman lied. He manipulated the data to make people believe that what he was saying was true.

      You get more accurate information and data from here:

      Obama’s 95% Illusion
      Wall Street Journal Review & Outlook
      October 13, 2008

  22. djcnor,

    Did you actually read the article you quoted citing Denmark as an example? “Danish economy’s mix of low inflation and low unemployment, emphasis on entrepreneurship and lower taxes.” Also, in 2008, Denmark has ranked as the world’s 11th most free economy. Please explain the socialism there.

    Also you mention quality of life… but exclude a large part of Europe. 10 countries in Europe rank above, yet those equal less than half the area of the US. Add in the other countries to equal the size of the US, and you’ll find it is lower.

    I used to think like you did that the majority of government workers were great workers… until I started doing business with local, state, and federal government. Unfortunately, I know this to be a different case. The attitude is just keep your head above water, don’t get fired. In private enterprise it’s get ahead, or someone else will. It boils down to comeptition, and since the government is the only government, they have none.

    Thanks for the maps, but to prove my points using real information, look to this link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_the_United_States … instead of LA to LV, it should be NYC to DC. Same distance, just a heck of a lot more people served. But who is the senate majority leader, and what area does he represent? You got it. Prok-barrell spending that even a European buys into.

    Isn’t it so much easier to spend someone else’s money?

  23. The NYC/DC route already exists! More later.

  24. Sure I read the article about Denmark. I’ve read many and experienced three months living and working there.

    The socialism is the Euro-type I keep talking about. Have you checked Denmark’s tax rate? It’s been lowered to about twice the US rate. And for that they get universal healthcare, guaranteed housing, paid higher education, free access to retraining and education etc. if you’re unemployed, and unemployment pay that lasts either 4 or 5 years. They also have a really great public transit system. It’s in realizing that people are a lot more likely to start businesses and take risks and innovate when whatever happens the basics will be taken care of. And it’s also realizing that a healthy well-educated work force favors all businesses.

    No, I don’t exclude a whole lot of Europe. Most, if not all, of those 10 countries with lower quality of life than the US were under some form of totalitarianism not that long ago.

    The ones that have been Euro-socialist for decades have a higher quality of life than the US.

    I disagree with your assessment of government workers and private workers. If you have any data showing a major difference in attitude toward work, show it.

  25. High-speed djcnor, high-speed…

    And Belgium, Germany, and France, all with higher taxes and all forms of life were under totalitarian regimes not that long ago? Give me a break. You’re picking out little pieces of data to suit your point. If we took the best areas of the US that have similar areas, or just the 10 best states, you’d find the US was higher. But the US is far larger is due just by size to have higher challenges. Despite this, it still exceeds your stats.

    And now you’re going to try to tell me that I need to give you stats showing a difference in attitude between government workers (which would have to be performed by the government) as opposed to real experience? You’re stretching. Like I said “close enough for government work”

  26. High speed does not make sense for the NYC/DC corridor. There are too many stops in between that you need to stop at to make it profitable.

    As for quality of life, where do you get your data? Here’s the list from the Human Development Index.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_Human_Development_Index

    The US is below Iceland, Norway, Canada, Austrailia, Ireland, Netherlands, Sweden, Japan, Luxembourg, Switzerland, France, Finland, Denmark and Austria. So below all the most socialist countries of Europe. Then there’s Spain, Belgium, Italy, and New Zealand, all just below us and rising. And yes, they all have higher taxes and get a lot more benefit for them.

    And yes, you need stats, and they don’t have to come from government. Most likely they’ll come from research economistsor social scientists.

  27. The US is below Iceland, a country that went bankrupt? Hmm… could it be that the country has the government too involved in the business sector? Yeah, we can all twist stats away from reality to try to prove a point, but it rarely works, and your case is no different. Don’t try to compare countries that were rebuilt and protected by the US to the US. Bottom line, the US has built itself to 300 million people, while defending most of the countries with higher standards of living (literally with troops stationed there at our cost), and been right in the same ball park with a different form of government. It obviously shows that these countries could have done even better without their socialist tendencies with all of the help they got from the US.

    Yes, high-speed does make sense in NYC/DC… you don’t have to stop at ALL of the stops. You can have local trains that branch off and service more, as does many other areas with high-speed rail.

    Now, you ask me for stats — ones that are provided by the government — that will track how inefficient the government is compared to the private sector? Get real. The government won’t pay ‘social scientists’ or whomever to research this, much less publish it. But I work regularly on US Government projects, so I don’t need stats. And if you don’t, all you have to do is walk into a US Post office a few times, and then try a FedEx or UPS store to see the measured difference in work attitude in action. Competition causes innovation and motivation. The US Government has none in most cases, and when it does, it fails (see example above).

    Please don’t try to compare apples to oranges and tell me that they are the same. And don’t try to argue that pork does not exist in a bill when the only people who agree with your contention are the politicians we regularly catch lying. Maybe this works in Europe, but it doesn’t pass the laugh test here in America.

  28. I guess money isn’t everything. Though perhaps life has changed a bit in Iceland since then. However, note what they propose to do to solve their problems: join the EU.

    Catch up. A lot has changed in the last 60 years. Don’t try to tell those in the EU that the US saved them. They held off the Germans for a decade while the US put together the resources to “save” them, and it was their land the war was fought on, with the US destroying as much in “saving” them as Germany had alread destroyed. Being able to see things from a different viewpoint is a real advantage in the greater world.

    No, but you do have to stop in the major ones, and there are at least 6 of these between NY and DC, which is enough to eat up all the time high speed would save over what now exists.

    So you have no stats. By the way social scientists choose for themselves what they investigate. Nor does the government control the publication of their work in any way. The difference between the post office and Fed Ex etc. is that Fed Ex etc. gets to pick and choose the services it will offer and the areas they will cover; the post office doesn’t. Yes you do need stats.

    I say there’s no pork and am willing to show you how any project in the bill you name is a stimulus rather than pork. Pick any project, say why you think it is pork, and I’ll take the other side. We’ll see who’s more convincing.

  29. djcnor,

    So you ask me for statistics — statistics that would have to be generated by the very organization (the US government) that has everything to lose by disclosing its inefficiency — and retreat behind the lack thereof as your reasoning point? Apparently, you haven’t learned to employ logic much. What’s making me snicker over here, is that my business is employment. I place people on government projects as well as private sector. The hiring process, and expectations of the two groups are completely different. Yet, to hear someone from a foreign country who is apparently quite content sucking on the public teet, tell me I need statistic (which by nature would be faulty) is a joke.

    And yes, we can tell the EU that the US has saved them. The British and French practice of appeasement caused its own problems by allowing a horrible terror to rise. Now you try to blame the damage in Europe on the US? Maybe the US should have tried to appease Hitler out of France? No, you’re right the US bombed the daylights out of the UK. Give that one up too. The US had to come in and clean up Europe’s mess, and as western Europe beat itself up so bad, the US had to rebuild, or the Iron Curtain would have turned into the Iron Big Tent. Keeping thousands of troops in Europe for years was VERY costly, for the US, but saved plenty for the European “powers”.

    OK, I’ll play your game: Please explain how $1 billion for “Periodic Censuses and Programs” is stimulus and not pork? And if you think you can answer this, or many of the others, I don’t think you understand what pork is…

  30. No, I asked you for statistics generated outside the government by independent social scientists, which by the way includes economists.

    And again, I am not from a foreign country. I am American. I am simply highly qualified enough to have the option of living and working outside the US and I have done that for 7 of the 40 years since I graduated high school.

    You are apparently totally unable to see WWII from another perspective. It’s your loss. No, the US did not bomb the UK because the UK had almost single handedly stood up to years and years of German bompardment while the US, isolationist for so long, stood by accumulating the means to come into the war. Read a European history book for once. Broaden your mind. The Iron Curtain was a post-war phenomena fought much more effectively by the Europeans than the US.

    It is generally acknowledged that the methods of census taking and of handling the data acquired is outdated, missing many people. Some of the money is going to update these methods. People will be employed to do this and will spend their pay in the general economy while much needed work is done. The census data is used for the allocation of resources not just by the government but by corporations as well. And accurate accounting makes such allocations more effecient and saves money that would otherwise be expended, thus saving both the government and corporations. This overhaul of the methods pays off long term in the accuracy of future censuses.

    “Pork” refers to spending that is intended to benefit constituents of a politician in return for their political support. Since an accurate census benefits the whole of the US, this project is not pork.

    Now you explain how it is.

  31. dcjnor —

    Years and years? Try 2. Yes, 2 qualifies as years (plural), but 2 years does not make it “years and years”. And they weren’t single-handed. You might remember that Germany also was at war with France, Poland, Norway, and the rest of the British commonwealth… it wasn’t just Britain by herself. Britain was not only on the brink of defeat, but bankruptcy. If European history books are telling you otherwise, it’s wishful thinking. The US literally propped up the Allies before their direct involvement, during, and after the war, at GREAT expense to the US. These expenses continue even today.

    Pork is not only your definition, but it is wasteful spending in general. But let’s look to your definition, and again, we’ll use the high-speed rail. Does it directly benefit Harry Reid’s district? Sure. Is it better suited elsewhere, YES. If you have to come up with some sweetened definition of how something can benefit the people to prove it’s not pork (wasteful spending)… it’s pork. Bottom line, funding the census is not stimulating with any realistic ROI. It’s just lining the pockets of the supporters of the administration, which will get jobs as a result of this, and cause the taxpayer to have to fund this even more. This is a stimulus bill, this item needs to be in a budget.

    Drop the statistics request. You can’t find statistics that show the government is equal to or more productive than the private sector BECAUSE THEY DON’T EXIST. The government will not pay for it, and the politicians would roadblock it too much to get any accuracy of any report. If you won’t accept the information from a subject matter expert, I think it rests my case that you have issues with reason and logic.

    I think the bottom line here is that you want drastic change in a country that doesn’t want it. Don’t try to make changes that most people don’t want… leave, and go to where it is “so much better”. But if you want to effect change here in this country, I would recommend you get out your checkbook and start funding it. As it is, it is people like me that currently fund this, and are constantly asked for more, while watching real-world situations (like my line of work) prove over and over again that methodologies like yours and socialism do not work.

  32. Actually, of course, the people do want drastic change which is why Obama was elected.

    2? Nonsense. Again I suggest you learn something about WWII from a European perspective, which considering that so much happened on their soil, is actually a more informed one than the US perspective. Here are some handy web resources which you could easily have gotten for yourself.

    http://creativegene.blogspot.com/2007/09/another-perspective-on-wwii.html

    http://www.temple.edu/newsroom/2008_2009/12/stories/hitchcock_book.htm

    To my mind, it started when Hitler took over Germany. At that point, he may have only been making war against certain groups of his own people, but that is when the huge numbers of deaths began.

    It was Britain that was standing up under the blitz, an experience that the US has never had.

    You know my definition of pork was the correct one. Go ahead, collect a variety of sources.

    Increasing the accuracy with which resources are allocated is stimulatory, because the information aids businesses in their planning and saves them money that can either be more profits or spent in other ways.

    I had no problem finding comparisons of government workers and other workers in any number of respects including how hard and well they worked.

    http://arp.sagepub.com/cgi/content/abstract/34/1/36

  33. djcnor —

    WWII started in 1939. The US entered in 1941. 2 years… or do the Europeans do different math?

    Obama was elected not on change, but he successfully linked his opponent to George W. Bush, and people wanted change from that, not radical change from our traditions.

    Increasing funds to the census is an item that needs to be in the regular budget as it is a maintenance and spending item. Accurate information does not stimulate, merely it adds funds where they need to go, and helps eliminate some of the waste. Anything in a bill that does not directly and immediately satisfy the purpose is wasteful. Beyond wasteful, these funds (using the census as an example) are then used to hire new people. Guess who will be getting hired? All of the people in campaigns that helped get the president and his supporters elected. What would you call that? Pork, by YOUR definition — a political kickback.

    You found a link… but did you even read it? It seems you don’t think through what you say, just glance and try to make a point. This is the problem with socialism. In theory it’s all nice, but in practice, it’s quite flawed. Even according to Marx, Socialism is the step before Communism. We all know how well that did. Human nature lesson: Hard-workers don’t want to support the lazy. This is what happens in socialism. It is also a reason why your hard-workers go out into private industry, and not into government, where the culture is to just get by as they have no competition.

    Let’s get this straight: Government spending does not have to be wasteful. But the government has certain strengths, and a ton of weakness. It needs to serve as a regulatory body, law enforcement, defense, infrastructure, and information aggregation resource. The rest has been and is better handled by the private industry. Spending outside of these areas is wasteful. Spending on a stimulus bill that serves political purpose without creating results is pork.

    We have plenty of pork in this bill. Don’t believe me? Don’t think it exists? Go on ANY news network, and watch them talk about the “stimulus” bill, and they’ll all tell you there is pork. Not one tries to say there is none. Maybe you should try convincing all of them of this wonderful thought process you have as well. I don’t think it would sell any better.

  34. Broaden your news sources, particularly to those networks beyond the US which have a more objective viewpoint and are not owned by one of the five corporations that own almost all American media, which is quite shameful in and of itself.

    The folks who will do the census work have not been hired yet. Malign them and accuse them of being hired on the basis of politics when they have been hired and not before.

  35. Follow the logic: For the best information about what happens inside the US, go outside the US to find these sources.

    Can I sell you a bridge?

  36. Yes, since US news sources are all controlled by a tiny tiny group of corporations devoted to profits rather than real news. It’s an unfortunate thing that the best information regarding the US comes from outside it, but it’s a sorry truth. Al Jazeera, for example, reported excellently on the US election. All the major world networks have reporters inside the US who are not controlled by those 5 media companies.

  37. Guys, we have a buyer for the bridge!

  38. No, I only buy the truth. It’s a lot more valuable than your fake bridge. Your determination to remain blind and ignorant of the world beyond the US is why the US will fail, if it eventually does.

  39. “No, I only buy the truth.”

    Good stuff. Hey guys, he wants to buy ANOTHER one!

  40. She…and you don’t seem to be doing much selling of anything, just making fun of what you can’t compete with, like the guys in the back of the auditorium doing cat calls at those on the stage who actually had the nerve to perform.

  41. Not making fun… pointing out the idiocy in simple terms. You’re definitely performing, but it’s a bad act. Take it somewhere people actually will pay for it, instead of booing you off the stage.

    So far you’ve tried to say that the only truth is available outside the US, that any money spent that might somehow wiggle its way into the economy is well-spent (trickle-down economics) and that experience means nothing — stats by people with an axe to grind mean everything.

    Yeah, you’re on a stage, but the problem is, no one other than the other actors on it think the show’s any good.

    84rules was smart to stop wasting time with you. I was just a little more stubborn and tried to reason with you. But shedding light on people like you, is like shedding light on the iris of the eye… the more light you shed, the more it closes up. The saying is correct: You can’t fix stupid. Please, go back to Europe, and stop using my money for your projects.

  42. Never mind, of course, that I have evidence to support my position and you have merely a few swallowed and unexamined assumptions.

    It is not idiocy to be open to new ideas, to observe when one’s assumptions are violated by facts, and to change your ideas as a result. It is idiocy to do otherwise.

    It is also wrong to twist what others have said. And you have twisted what I said. For example, in addition to distributing money into the economy (via work), the projects I support are sustainable and have long term benefits for all businesses. “Trickle down” involves giving money to the rich who suposedly will spend it in a way that “trickles down”. This instead gives money, for work, to workmen which trickles horizontally to other workmen.

    It is also wrong to say that I have s aid that experience counts for nothing. Instead, I said that overall experience, including experience outside the US, counts for more than individual experience. Do you deny that?

    You don’t understand the working of the eye any more than you understand other things, but never mind that. Note instead, that I remain open while you close yourself to ideas and facts that run counter to old stereotypes. It is your loss.

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