Monday, February 23, 2009

Does Anyone Else See the Contradiction? Obama Follies, Part 1

This afternoon, I came across the following headline. It is actually quite funny until you think about the fact that politicians (that probably think they are smart) are the ones coming up with these half-witted schemes. The headline reads:

Obama urges spending curbs, hands out $15 billion

Do you see the contradiction? How can a government that has just dropped $787 BILLION dollars of free government handouts also urge that we cut government spending?!? It would be like a parent urging her daughter not to smoke after buying her cigarettes, or a CEO telling her company the need to be thrifty while collecting a several million dollar salary. CUTTING SPENDING AFTER PASSING THE SINGLE MOST EXPENSIVE BILL IN HISTORY DOESN'T MAKE SENSE!

According to the article, Obama plans on cutting the deficit by "scaling back Iraq war spending, raising taxes on the wealthiest and streamlining government." The first of these will doubtless find little objection, and the second will find objection with libertarians like myself. (Why not cut spending to reduce deficits rather than raise taxes?!)

But the third - streamlining government - is a pipe dream, or a shift piece of rhetoric (probably the latter). How can government be streamlined when it just passed a $787 billion handout to companies? And how can we talk about streamlining government when, as the article notes, the administration is "attempt[ing] to bolster the severely weakened banking system without nationalizing any institutions"? In government language, "bolster" is always synonymous with "pass more regulations for," and "give government more control of." Does that sound like "streamlining" the government? I think not.

And here is a final doozy. In a direct quote, Obama shows that he is a true politician by coming up with something exactly THIS stupid:

"We cannot simply spend as we please and defer the consequences to the next budget, the next administration or the next generation."

So, tell us, boy genius: where is the $787 billion coming from, if not from the "next budget"? And how is spending $787 billion dollars to help out banks and auto workers not "spend[ing] as we please?"

So try to figure it out if you can (especially those of you who like the really hard riddles): How exactly can one go about tightening government spending and streamlining government a week or so after spending $787 billion for government handouts?

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