Boo-Hoo Economics

Michael Ramirez Cartoon

Michelle “Antionette” Obama’s husband signed a Union Apparatchiks Bailout bill on Tuesday. It gave $26 Billion to state employees, primarily teachers (4 states of which that don’t even need it because there is no shortage!) and being the political animals in an election year what did they do to “offset” that spending?

They cut Food Stamps. 🙂

Or so the bill signed says (wait for the punchline, it’s coming).

Which prompts the liberal Boston Globe to complain:

ON TUESDAY, President Obama signed a $26 billion bill to help state and local governments cover Medicaid payments and avoid having to lay off teachers and other public employees. In what passes for high drama in Washington, the House of Representatives was called back from its summer recess to vote on the package, and the successful outcome was hailed as a major Democratic victory. “We can’t stand by and do nothing while pink slips are given to the men and women who educate our children or keep our communities safe,’’ Obama said. “That doesn’t make sense.’’
No, it doesn’t. But only by the occluded standards of contemporary Washington could this aid package be considered a victory. What began three months ago as a $50 billion emergency spending bill limped to the president’s desk at half that size and was largely paid for — “offset’’ in the clinical terminology of the budget — by cutting $12 billion from the food stamp program. In other words, a measure designed to help one group struggling in the recession came at the expense of another that is even worse off — and growing rapidly.

The number of people receiving food stamps stands at a record 41 million, or one out of every eight Americans. Driven by the downturn, that number has risen every month for the past 18 months. Last year alone, it grew by 20 percent. It’s grown by 50 percent since the recession began.

Then they say : The “good news’’ from an economic standpoint is that food stamps are a terrific vehicle for stimulus, because recipients spend them quickly.

Is that related to Nancy Pelosi’s unemployment comment that benefits are actually “Job creating” and that unemployment benefits “Create jobs faster than almost any other initiative you can name.” 🙂

Bad news is Good News and Good News is Good News. Orwell would be proud of them.

But I find this “offset” target very curious. And makes me wonder just how politically motivated it was, as in, they picked something that made it look like they were being “responsible” knowing they’d never really do it.

And it was less than they wanted to begin with, so they were being more “responsible”.

But the truth is, it was in part a Campaign Slush Fund transfer anyhow. 🙂

Along with a bailout of his apparatchiks.

It goes like this, they give these Billions to teachers unions and then the teachers unions turn some of that money right back around as PAC contributions to Democrats running for re-elections. So it’s free campaign money.

They have effectively porked their own candidates without actually looking like it.

Now isn’t that just peachy. 🙂

According to the Washington, D.C.-based Labor Union Report, the National Education Association in 2009 “raked in a whopping $355,334,165 in ‘dues and agency fees’ from (mostly) teachers around the country.” It spent close to $11 million more than it took in — $50 million of which union leaders poured into “political activities and lobbying” for exclusively left-wing and Democratic partisan causes and candidates.

Its primary mission? No, not educational excellence. Not “the children.” Political self-preservation.

Last July, the National Education Association’s retiring top lawyer, Bob Chanin, speaking at the NEA’s annual meeting in July, made the union’s true interests transparent: “Despite what some among us would like to believe it is not because of our creative ideas. It is not because of the merit of our positions. It is not because we care about children, and it is not because we have a vision of a great public school for every child. NEA and its affiliates are effective advocates because we have power.

“And we have power because there are more than 3.2 million people who are willing to pay us hundreds of millions of dollars in dues each year, because they believe that we are the unions that can most effectively represent them, the unions that can protect their rights and advance their interests as education employees . . .

“This is not to say that the concern of NEA and its affiliates with closing achievement gaps, reducing dropout rates, improving teacher quality and the like are unimportant or inappropriate. To the contrary.

“These are the goals that guide the work we do. But they need not and must not be achieved at the expense of due process, employee rights and collective bargaining. That simply is too high a price to pay.”

Left-wing radical Saul Alinsky taught his education acolytes well. Teacher organizers, he counseled, must commit to a “singleness of purpose.” No, not serving children’s needs, but serving the “ability to build a power base.” If that isn’t the dictionary definition of “special interest,” what is? (Michelle Malkin)

Back to the Boo-Hoo Globe: The justification offered by proponents was that food prices haven’t risen as much as Congress expected them to, and therefore cutting benefits to hungry kids isn’t really so bad, especially since the cuts won’t take effect until 2014.

Ta Da!  there’s the magic bullet!!

So they are cutting food stamps 4 years from now to pay for a Union Stimulus now!

Kinda sounds like Wimpy from The Popeye cartoons, “I will pay you tomorrow for a hamburger today”.

That’s Liberal economics for ya.

Which leads to….

The U.S. government spent itself deeper into the red last month, paying nearly $20 billion in interest on debt and an additional $9.8 billion to help unemployed Americans.
Federal spending eclipsed revenue for the 22nd straight time, the Treasury Department said Wednesday. The $165.04 billion deficit, while a bit smaller than the $169.5 billion shortfall expected by economists polled by Dow Jones Newswires, was the second highest for the month on record. The highest was $180.68 billion in July 2009.
The government usually runs a deficit during July, which is the 10th month of the fiscal year. So far in fiscal 2010, the government spent $1.169 trillion more than it made. That figure is about $98 billion lower than during the comparable period a year earlier.
For all of fiscal 2009, the U.S. ran a record $1.42 trillion deficit. Fiscal 2010 might run a little higher—the Obama administration sees $1.47 trillion.
Wednesday’s monthly Treasury statement said U.S. government revenues in July totaled $155.55 billion, compared with $151.48 billion in July 2009.
Spending was higher, totaling $320.59 billion. July 2009 spending amounted to $332.16 billion.
Year-to-date revenues were $1.75 trillion, compared with $1.74 trillion in the first 10 months of fiscal 2009. Spending so far in this fiscal year is $2.92 trillion, versus $3.01 trillion in the prior period.
Spending for benefits for the unemployed year to date totaled $121.4 billion; for July, the tab was $9.8 billion, the Treasury statement said.
Years of deficit spending by Washington have led to a mounting national debt. Interest payments so far in fiscal 2010 amount to $185.25 billion; by contrast, corporate taxes collected by the government during the same 10 months were $139.71 billion. Interest payments in July alone were $19.9 billion. (WSJ)

But don’t worry, this was all George W. Bush’s Fault! He made them do it!! 😦

Then Boston Globe ends with this sobbing whine: But the idea that they’ve won anything overall is hard to sustain. They sacrificed the most effective form of stimulus and capitulated to the Republican idea that deficits matter above all else. Their decision about who should bear the brunt of the offsets, and the silence that greeted it, suggests a moral capitulation as well. It may be a victory. But it’s nothing to brag about.

They have to be dishonest even to themselves in their Insufferable Perceived Moral Superiority and Outrage.

The cuts aren’t until 2014 ya dirtbags! You know, the same year the Health Care Mandate kicks in!  🙂 So they are sobbing about cutting something 4 years from now to pay for pork spending now and they are boo-hooing “it’s so unfair” about it.

Meanwhile the Deficit is climbing towards 15 Billion dollars and they just can’t stop the addiction to spending, especially on their own apparatchiks.

But that’s all George W. Bush’s Fault!

Where’s that Industrial Strength Barf Bag…