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Amid Crisis, Senate Sends Fatter Spending Bill To President Bush

Amid all the hyperventilating about the massive cost to the American taxpayers in the Bailout Bill coming down the short pipe, those tasked with crafting it have learned nothing and show no apparent personal restraint in the conduct of government. From the Associated Press, a report that the Senate has sent an even bigger spending bill to President Bush for signature.

Automakers gained $25 billion in taxpayer-subsidized loans and oil companies won elimination of a long-standing ban on drilling off the Atlantic and Pacific coasts as the Senate passed a sprawling spending bill Saturday.

The 78-12 vote sent the $634 billion measure to President Bush, who was expected to sign it even though it spends more money and contains more pet projects than he would have liked.

The measure is needed to keep the government operating beyond the current budget year, which ends Tuesday. As a result, the legislation is one of the few bills this election year that simply must pass. Bush's signature would mean Congress could avoid a lame-duck session after the Nov. 4 election.

No one appears to have demonstrated the courage or character to remove their earmarks and 'pet projects' even though they are working on a bill that will spend more than that by billions on top of it all.

We sacrifice every day, every week and every month in order to maintain our mortgage commitments in good faith. Fewer dinners out, wearing shoes a bit longer, driving less, vacations trimmed or eliminated.

Yet Congressional leaders give every appearance of the government sacrificing nothing.

The November 4 elections should contain many surprises for comfortable long-time incumbents. But that is sadly unlikely.


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Comments (14)

To recycle an oft-quoted pr... (Below threshold)
Mike:

To recycle an oft-quoted proverb:

"I'd believe we were in a crisis if the people claiming we're in a crisis would act like we are in a crisis."

What this tells me is that even though we are in the midst a debt-driven economic crunch, Congress still believes that "we the people" are wealthy enough to keep paying for reckless government spending.

Ford is actually teetering ... (Below threshold)

Ford is actually teetering very close to disaster and needs help to survive. Otherwise, it may collapse taking down jobs at plants, car dealerships and mechanics all over the nation.

Thankfully, the feds were able to immediately sell off the assets of Washington Mutual to J.P. Morgan otherwise it would have drained $20 billion from the $45.2 Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. Only two months ago the collapse of California savings and loan giant, IndyMac sucked $8.9 billion from this deposit insurance fund. WAMU shareholders are now broke though.

Anyone here still believe John McCain's first quote about "the fundamentals of this economy are strong" from a few days ago?

I don't see anywhere in the... (Below threshold)
res:

I don't see anywhere in the Constitution where it says the Government must prevent a company failing. All three US-based auto manufacturers have made very poor product and business decisions, and personally, I'd prefer my tax dollars going toward something other than bailing out people and companies that can't live within their means and are driven by selfish greed. Let 'em fail and let the market sort it all out (a proven method which tends to discourage further similar behavior). It may be painful for a while, but I suspect a shorter while than if the Government tries to "help."

You can read details of the... (Below threshold)
ThnksButNoThnks Palin:

You can read details of the earmarks here:
http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/Z?r110:H24SE8-0090:

Oddly, Alaska managed to squeeze in another $222 million for pet projects and $292 million in new military construction. Just $514 million to get Gov. Palin's state through the rest of the year... think she'll give any of that back?

The article also claims, wi... (Below threshold)
Clint:

The article also claims, without much detail, that it repeals the offshore drilling ban...

I've heard that before, but if true it's interesting.

Maybe what we need is an ec... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

Maybe what we need is an economic crash. Just maybe it will wake people the fuck up about what those assholes in DC are doing. Coming home to justify your existance is going to be damned hard if the locals have been eating nothing but grass and leaves; sitting by a frozen space heater.

"ThnksButNoThnks Palin" - O... (Below threshold)
marc:

"ThnksButNoThnks Palin" - Ok, I'll bite. Which of the funding requests (earmarks) for Alaska do you think should be "sent back?"

It's just a warm-up for the... (Below threshold)

It's just a warm-up for the Obama administration's socialist program. And GWB is helping him get started.

The only question is if John McCain feels like being a conservative on the day the bill comes up for a vote.

"Which of the funding reque... (Below threshold)
LaMedusa:

"Which of the funding requests (earmarks) for Alaska do you think should be "sent back?""

I would like to know that, too, "ThnksButNoThnks Palin".

I mean that's awfully nice of you to post the link with details, however, which request do you find unreasonable, and why?

Paul:"Anyon... (Below threshold)
Larry:


Paul:

"Anyone here still believe John McCain's first quote about "the fundamentals of this economy are strong" from a few days ago?"

I do. The problem is a lack of liquidity that has been caused by an accounting rule called 'Mark to Market.' This is on top of a bunch of bad loans where the seed was well planted by a bunch of Dems, Paul, and if you will be honest with yourself, you know it.

Lemme see now, Ford Motor. Okay, leave us take a look. How about saddled with a higher cost of labor plus higher medical per car? How about competing with plants which have had major incentives to locate one place or the other as foreign car makers decided to built or at least assemble some of their cars here. Those plants are not always union, they have a younger workforce with less retirement overhang and medical costs are lower. In some cases, the actual hourly wage is less and combined with work rules, production is greater.


Paul, that last paragraph w... (Below threshold)
Larry:

Paul, that last paragraph wasn't directed at you, it was pointed at res.

Paul Hooson: So should the... (Below threshold)
Paul Duffau:

Paul Hooson: So should the taxpayers bail out every failing business? I don't. The depositors of WaMu were protected. The shareholders may have been protected if the Bush policies of 2003 or the McCain co-sponsored bill S-190 of 2005 had passed.

And I would be most careful of looking to play the blame game - Barney Frank and Chris Dodd were bought and paid for by Fannie Mae lobbyist and Countrywide. How much did Obama get in bundled contributions from Harold Raines? Jim Johnson was on the team and seems to be still if a recent email is correct.

And why are you playing on this side of the electric divide? Tired of the echo chamber?

And these monetary and legi... (Below threshold)
ExSubNuke:

And these monetary and legislative shenanigans are supposed to surprise me... why?!?!

After learning that Reid tried to backdoor a bunch of funding for ACORN onto the buyout... NOTHING surpises me from that rat bastard bunch of weasels in DC.

Three words:Line i... (Below threshold)

Three words:

Line item veto.




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