The Elephant in the Room

There is no doubt in my mind that both as Senator and as President, Barack Obama did the right this regarding TARP and the Stimulus Bill. These measures were required, in my view, to keep our economy, and conversely the global economy, from sliding in another Great Depression.

Understanding the complexities of the world’s economies is far from being my strong suit. Quite frankly, I am just too intellectually lazy to pursue a complete knowledge of Wall Street v. Main Street and all that lies in between.

I am capable, in my defense, to place my trust in those that know far more about the subject than I do. And, I trust Barack Obama. Republicans, not so much. They drove the bus into the ditch in the first place.

Regardless of the need for spending bills to prevent the crash of the economy, the National Debt is rising to levels heretofore unimaginable. Of course, much of that debt was incurred under Republican administrations, but you’ll never get a Tea Bagger to admit that.

It’s easy to say “cut spending!” Okay, where? Now the equation becomes a bit more tricky. It’s kind of like earmarks – everyone hates them, everyone wants to see money going to their home district.

Here’s a few ideas of mine to cut spending:

Eliminate  two third’s of our 700 foreign military bases.

Enact Secretary Robert Gates’ proposed cuts to the military.

Eliminate the Depart of Redundancy Department.

Freeze all new Federal hiring without specific Congressional approval.

End off-shore tax havens for American corporations.

Repeal and replace the Bush prescription drug bill.

Simplify the tax code to reduce loopholes.

Reduce salaries of all elected and appointed Federal employees by 10%.

Review and cut where necessary all tax subsidies and credits for business.

Those are my ideas, Pop Bloggers. What are yours?

William Stephenson Clark


Filed under Addiction, Economics, President Barack Obama, Psychological Disorders, The Economy

13 responses to “The Elephant in the Room

  1. WSClark

    An interesting point from today’s Eagle…..

    Obama seeks to force votes on spending cuts

    “The legislation would award Obama and his successors the ability to take two months or more to scrutinize spending bills that have already been signed into law for pork barrel projects and other dubious programs. He could then send Congress a package of spending cuts for a mandatory up-or-down vote on whether to accept or reject them.”

    I’m betting that both sides reject the proposal.

    • I’m betting with you — those up or down votes are public and on record and may get noticed… 😉

      It’s so easy to criticize, much more difficult to actually do something and be held accountable for it!

  2. My idea is being considered in Cali.
    Legalize pot and tax it.
    This would save money in multiple law enforcement agencies and bring in revenue too.
    I wonder how many people are rotting in jail for nothing more than possesion?
    Time to end the prohibition.

  3. WSClark

    “Legalize pot and tax it.”

    Legalizing helps in many areas – illegal immigration in part, farming in the mid-South, tax revenues and eliminating needless jailing of users.

    That, and perhaps the quality would be more uniform!

  4. tosmarttobegop

    Pork makes up less then one percent of Federal spending, not a noticeable cut there.
    Though it should be looked at and controlled for pointless spending for no good reasons.

    As was seen with the two Wars, our military really is wanting, a serious conflict would leave us almost defenseless against a real enemy. That would leave the unthinkable with the only solution is using nuclear weapons. This is not about the case of playing World Policemen its about defending the United States on our own shores.

    It comes back to the third rail as it is called social and entitlement spending which does make up a good part of Federal spending. As it is though I have witnessed the elderly coming in to buy cat food when they do not have a cat or a dog. To cut the spending of Social security even to that of how much a person has put in.
    Would be the same as condemning them to a certain death or hardship on their family which will drag them down to about the same situation.

    It is part of what made no sense what so ever with the Health care reform by depending on and add to the rolls of Medicare and Medicaid. Under funded and over stressed with no real increase of spending on either.
    As it is was a un-funded mandate, that is being funded on the credit card and cutting the already low pay for the Doctors and Hospitals.

    Add to this that overall President Obama has not been any more responsible about spending then Bush was.
    The answer is not just throw money at the problems without stopping and actually looking at the need and reasonability of the spending.

    TARP was more worried about the criminals not getting as much money because of the economy falling.
    No requirement to actually do the right thing to fix the problems.

    The stimulus was the same way, it was used not to fix the problems but to continue them so as to not change the way things worked.

    • “…our military really is wanting…”

      How many bases do we have all across the world, how many do we need?

      I don’t think our military is wanting at all, I just think we should stop being the world’s policeman. We can’t protect our own borders but we sure protect a bunch of other countries.

    • You forgot to mention the entitlement programs for corporations. Do we give actual American people anywhere near as much ‘help’ as we give companies?

      • indypendent

        But, fnord, we need to keep feeding the corporate beasts because they give Americans jobs.

        Oh, wait. Alot of these same companies have been outsourcing those American jobs – and with the blessing of our bought-and-paid-for politicians.



      • I’ve worked for a DOD contractor.
        The waste and cronyism is pitiful.
        You work on projects that are never meant to come to fruition.
        I’ve known liscensed engineers who travel the country, knowing this is true, and they move from project to project, never seeing one of them become reality.
        They don’t dare bring this up, or they are considered non-players, and soon black-balled.

    • I do believe the original healthcare reform that Obama laid out had all the plans for how it was to be paid written into it. But that plan was severely butchered by the time it was passed.

      • indypendent

        You’re right. I do think Obama’s original plan was butchered by the time the Republicans dug in their heels and threw their hissy fits – with the help of some Democrats.

        But Obama tried to bend over backwards to appease everybody and he ended up being gored.

        I wonder if after the midterm elections if Obama will gather more backbone? It will probably depend on the final outcome of the power shift in Congress.

  5. I did a post a while back about what got us out of the Depression. I found the chart very interesting…

  6. tosmarttobegop

    It is true that a good deal of money is wasted on the foreign bases some we actually pay the country rent for them. What I meant by wanting is that in order to have the manpower to go and stay in Iraq the Army reserve and the National guard was used. Both are there for a reserve and not front line service.

    As it was a sustain deployment put the available soldiers in a hardship that was the same as a overextension of the forces. In what was at worse a minor action not a full out conflict.

    We have a short coming, too much thought and faith put in fighting a war of technology against an enemy that is also geared to fight a war of technology. Even in a standard war we would be lacking and would end up like it was fighting the insurgence.

    I also miss one item, it is the catch 22 of the desire to cut spending.
    We will not cut entitlements and that is the only place that cuts can make a difference.

    I am not advocating it, simply saying it is the answer that we do not want to hear.