Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Hemorrhaging Money: The Latest Spending Bill

Just listening to NPR's report on the latest spending bill...chock full of earmarks...which the President will sign.

I wish he wouldn't. For both reasons of style and substance, I wish he would send this bill back to the hill and say: "Try again. Fast. We can't wait."

I've written before about the massive American Debt and why it frightens me. We need to begin rebuilding- slowly, carefully, and strongly...so that the Republicans can not pull the American Government to the ground again for a long, long time.

Back in the late 1990s, Bill Clinton went toe to toe with a Republican Congress over spending and won. He also balanced the budget and began to make progress toward reducing our national dept to manageable levels.

In those moments, a subtle shift began in the minds of the American people: Perhaps the Democrats were NOT the party of "Tax and Spend" - perhaps it was the Radical Republicans who were doing the most harm by trying to "drown the American Government in a bathtub."

This shift was only partial, it will take more work to fix it firmly in American minds. As the poorly built edifice of the Bush Era comes crashing down around our ears, the American people again saw the Democratic Party as responsible enough to reverse the nation's downhill course...

That positive image of us as Democrats will NOT stay fixed in the minds of the American people if we are seen to be using this opportunity to shunt funding off to isolated groups and pet projects at a time when the entire American public stands in economic peril.

This morning, I heard another story on NPR...(It's not posted yet, so you'll have to find it yourself...I may not have all the details right, either)...one of the items in this bill is $1.5 MILLION Dollars to hire 8 people to change road signs on an Arizona interstate from metric back into the Imperial system...

$1.5 MILLION DOLLARS! To employ only 8 people.

Sorry, my fellow Democrats- but this kind of foolishness is doing the GOP's work for them.

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