Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Understanding the Pelosi/Reid/Obama spending bill

Also known as the "Stimulus Package." Democrats are simply using this as an opportunity to load on an astonishing amount of pork. It's a joke and an outrage.

Andy at NRO puts it in simple terms: (emphasis mine)

Only 12 Cents of Every Dollar Is For Something That Could Plausibly Be Called a Growth Stimulus [Andy McCarthy]

So say the editors of the Wall Street Journal in their analysis of this mother of all boondoggles. And note that (a) the editors are, as they make clear, being generous in denominating about $90B of the $825B as potential stimulus; (b) they do not address the interest on the borrowing, which (though Democrats don't talk about this) will add another $300B or so to the final tally—making it closer to $1.2TRILLION; and (c) they do make the much missed point that even more perilous (if such a thing is conceivable) than the apparent cost of the bill is the likelihood that "this spending bonanza will become part of the annual 'budget baseline' that Congress uses as the new floor when calculating how much to increase spending the following year, and into the future."

So to repeat, a commitment of untold trillions of taxpayer dollars dedicated to left-wing social engineer that taxpayers themselves would never in a trillion years agree to pay for, guaranteeing generations of crushing debt and an inevitably declining quality of life, all to achieve a comparatively miniscule $90B of stimulus ... most of which will not actually be spent during the current downturn.

If Republicans can't take that ball and run with it, I don't know what to say about them.