From one liberal tool to another

Recalled California Gov. Gray Davis didn’t waste time in sending a message to Democrats cheering about Sen. Arlen Specter doing the ol’ party swap.

“That’s excellent,” he told the San Francisco Chornicle’s Spin Cycle Blog, and then he offered some advice from a politician who knows first hand about “the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune.”

Yes, Democrats, heed the advice of Gray Davis. It’s not that the people will overwhelmingly reject your incompetence, it’s just that the “slings and arrows of outrageous fortune” will hit you.

Only a self-absorbed, delusional fool would think that it was mere “fortune” that put the nail in Davis’ political coffin. And only such a fool would think the GOP’s challenge to Specter and the conservative backlash against the Obama economic agenda is anything similar.

Let’s recall (pun intended) that Gray Davis created his own misfortune — by passing bogus state budgets (with the help of Democrats in the state Legislature), calling them balanced, skating to re-election, and then crying “crisis” when the books didn’t balance.

When he took office, the state of California was running a budget surplus of $15 billion. Instead of giving that money back to the people, investing in one-time projects such as new roads or schools or simply stashing it away for a rainy day, Davis oversaw an alarming expansion of the state government. Ultimately, he was the father of a $38 billion budget deficit in 2003, and voters justifiably fired him.

All of that could have been avoided. During his last four years in office, California’s combined rate of inflation and population growth was 21 percent and state revenues increased by 28 percent. All should have been good — the state was taking in money at a greater rate than it was growing. But no, government spending ballooned by 36 percent; eight points ahead of revenue and 15 points ahead of growth. Davis lacked the fortitude to look out for the state’s long-term, financial interests (this is not say the goon we replaced Davis with has done any better).

But, according to Davis, it was “outrageous fortune” that did him in.

I’m always conscious that we live in a cyclical world. You’re up one day, and you’re down another. So people shouldn’t get carried away thinking about their good fortune.

The tide goes in, the tide goes out. Times change, attitudes change. …

It’s great news for now — but no one should get complacent.

One would think Davis would know by now that you can’t spend taxpayer money like crazy, bankrupt the government and get away with it. One could guess that Davis would warn the party against exploding the size of government, especially during a recession.

But no. His advice is to not get too excited.

Specter himself admitted that his vote for the stimulus package was the tipping point, prompting a conservative to offer a serious challenge in the Republican primary that Specter would likely have lost.

Specter, like Davis, hasn’t learned that you can only run-up the taxpayers’ tab for so long before they start to notice.

Assuming Al Franken takes the Minnesota seat, Specter gives the Democrats the filibuster-proof 60 seats in the Senate (62 if you count Sens. Collins and Snowe) — so it’s all on them. As Obama pushes through his government expanding plans in the arenas of education, health care and energy, they won’t be able to shift the blame onto anyone else.

And as taxpayers begin to realize the bill for those programs is one we can’t afford, perhaps Specter can sit down with Gray Davis and ask him whom they will hold accountable.


In the name of recovery

pigsIt is beyond clear that Barack Obama and the Democrats in congress are using “economic stimulus” as a ruse to push through their socialist agenda — expanding the role of government in our lives, creating more dependent classes, bloating inept social programs and running up a massive tab expecting some magical way to pay for it all later.

Call it the Stimulating Government Act of 2009:

“The Democrat bill won’t stimulate anything but more government and more debt,” Representative Mike Pence of Indiana, chairman of the Republican conference, said Tuesday. “The slow and wasteful spending in the House Democrat bill is a disservice to millions of Americans who want to see this Congress take immediate action to get this economy moving again.”

Want proof? The Congressional Budget Office’s report on the 1,588-page bill shows that nearly 80 percent of the stimulus — which we’re being told “has” to pass quickly — won’t be spent till 2010 and later. Most of it won’t hit for more than two years.

If this was about digging the American economy out of this recession, that money would hit this year, especially since most recessions last about 18 months (which means there’s somewhere between 6 months and year left).

But no, this isn’t about stimulating the economy. This is about pork. This is about the growth of government. This is about a Democratic social agenda.

This bill, which the House is expected to pass today and David Brooks described as lacking any strategic vision, spends $223,000 for every job it supposedly creates. $223,000.

How did that happen? Well, there’s plenty of pork, from contraception to new computers at the State Department to endowments to new grass for the national mall.

But there’s more. Billions go into 150 different government programs. Basically, this is “good for government, bad for the economy.”

Just go down the list of expenditures in this bill and you’ll find funding for every item near and dear to a Democrat’s heart — Medicare, foodstamps, Pell grants, welfare, “green” technology, etc. — for years to come. And if you think those programs will shrink back down once this “stimulus” runs out, think again.

Not to mention the new welfare program of giving people who don’t pay taxes magical tax refunds out of the air. Basically, it’s money for nothing.

It’s brilliant, really. Create a crisis and then piggy-back your Democratic agenda on a recession.

For all the talk of change during the campaign, we’ve got to wonder what happened to Obama during the transition. He once spoke of eliminating government programs that aren’t working. Shoot, as recently as last week, during his inaugural lecture, he spoke of the new “era of responsibility.” What a load of well spoken crap.

As many have said, now he’s George W. Bush on steroids. Washington already gave us the $700 billion TARP boondoggle last fall, the $350 billion housing bailout last summer, the bailout of Fannie and Fredddie — now we’re talking about spending between $825 billion and $900 billion to grow the government (and actually, the CBO says we’re looking at a $1.1 trillion tab)? And don’t think the banks are through yet.

Where is the government going to get all that money?

The real moment of truth here is for the Republicans in congress — can they really be what John McCain calls the “loyal opposition” to Pelosi, Obama and Reid (POR for short)? Or will they cave under the bipartisanship anvil?

House Minority Leader Boehner is telling his caucus to vote against the bill. Maybe they can pull some Democrats with them. And any Republicans that say “aye” should be targeted by their own party in two years.