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Billions in stimulus aid go to areas that voted for Obama

This morning, USA Today is reporting:

Billions of dollars in federal aid delivered directly to the local level to help revive the economy have gone overwhelmingly to places that supported President Obama in last year's presidential election.

That aid -- about $17 billion -- is the first piece of the administration's massive stimulus package that can be tracked locally. Much of it has followed a well-worn path to places that regularly collect a bigger share of federal grants and contracts, guided by formulas that have been in place for decades and leave little room for manipulation.

Conservatives will surely be quick to point out that this smells a lot like political payoffs, but I disagree. The places that are always begging for -- and receiving -- the most Federal money are generally large cities with large minority populations. These cities (Washington DC, Philadelphia, Detroit, Los Angeles, Chicago, New Orleans, etc.) have been controlled by Democrats for decades, and in many instances (e.g. Detroit) their minority community has ascended to power within the local Democratic party structure, and reliably delivers >90% of minority votes to Democrats on a regular basis.

It is no surprise, then, that these cities have received a huge chunk of Federal aid dollars. They have gotten the lion's share of this money for decades.

But the big cities are still not happy. The New York Times is also reporting that big cities are upset over the fact that Stimulus money for transportation projects has been awarded largely to rural counties for improvements on inter-city and inter-state highways. According to the Times report, major cities house 2/3 of our nation's population and contribute 3/4 of its economic activity, and those cities expect a similar share of Federal transportation aid to help combat problems like traffic jams and chronically underfunded public transportation systems.

This story serves as yet another example of the growing chasm between the politics of large urban areas and the rest of America. While counties (and sometimes states) without enormous urban areas have generally been able to plan and pay for their own infrastructure and welfare improvement programs with only a modicum of Federal assistance, city and state governments long under the control of liberal Democrats have grown progressively more dependent on massive Federal aid. The differences between Texas (no state income tax and a fiscally conservative approach to government) and California should put any disputes over this subject permanently to rest.

It is ironic, yet entirely truthful, that the Democrats have morphed from the party that once championed the common working man into the party that now champions massive and politically-powerful city, state governments and Federal agencies over their less urbane counterparts in so-called "Middle America." Democrats also enthusiastically support Big Labor and Big Business over small businesses and the self-employed, thanks to the billions of dollars in lobbying money and political contributions that they have gathered over the years. Name any major Democrat legislation (stimulus, TARP, SCHIP, Fair Pay, Cap and Trade, health care reform, etc.) and I'll show you a bill that disproportionately benefits Big Labor, Big Business, and Big Government.

If it's "Big," then you can bet it has "Democrat" written all over it.

...

And speaking of "big," this piece from TigerHawk is essential reading (h/t Instapundit):

The Obama administration aspires to restructure large parts of the United States economy. Because its efforts have been broken into separate initiatives with different justifications, few people other than news junkies have noticed how extraordinary Barack Obama's agenda is. Perhaps a number will help: 35%. That is the aggregate percentage of United States GDP produced by the three industries that the Democrats hope to restructure from the top down: Health care (17% of GDP), energy (9.8% of GDP), and financial services (8% of GDP). Think about that. Without even considering the transformational impact of proposed anti-business laws of general application, such as the Orwellian "employee free choice act," the Obama administration wants to redesign 35% of gross domestic product from the center. And he proposes to do it all in a rush this summer, lest the decline in his popularity and that of the Congressional Democrats erodes his power to do so.

Even FDR wasn't that reckless with his party's power during his first year in office. And liberals complained that George W. Bush had an "Imperial Presidency"?


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Comments (23)

You dont say! Never would o... (Below threshold)
914:

You dont say! Never would of imagined the corrupt contemtible demoncrats would be fleecing the taxpayer for their own disgusting political apparatus.

PUKE!!!

Thats [ contemptible ] in ... (Below threshold)
914:

Thats [ contemptible ] in every sense of the word. Hard to spell check when your pissed off.

I'm SHOCKED! SHOCKED I tel... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

I'm SHOCKED! SHOCKED I tell you! If all of Barry's plans come to pass, there will come a time when the American public would look forward to seeing all those bastards before a firing squad. Impeachment would not be enough.

I held my RomCo "Surpris... (Below threshold)

I held my RomCo "Surprise Meter" up to the news article...it didn't even register!!

Mind you, since Obama ascended to the throne, I've been re-calibrating it daily to increase it's sensitivity...and it STILL wouldn't register!!

On a smaller scale, there's... (Below threshold)

On a smaller scale, there's a fellow employee here who is always begging me for $10 or $20 to get her through to next payday. Today, for the first time, I had to say no.

From the article:<blo... (Below threshold)
jp2:

From the article:

The imbalance didn't start with the stimulus. From 2005 through 2007, the counties that later voted for Obama collected about 50% more government aid than those that supported McCain, according to spending reports from the U.S. Census Bureau. USA TODAY's review did not include Alaska, which does not report its election results by county.

Excellent misleading! Awesome work by USA Today and then Wizbang.

jp2, you actually helped pr... (Below threshold)
John Irving:

jp2, you actually helped prove the point. . these locations voted for more largesse from the public treasury, and voted Democrat of course.

So much for the myth that Red locales receive more government aid, glad to see you've owned up to that one.

IJHYYA

jp2 doesn't see the irony. ... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

jp2 doesn't see the irony. The people on the dole vote for those who will keep them on the dole.

I would think jp2 was tryin... (Below threshold)
Zaugg:

I would think jp2 was trying to put the blame on Dubya for those 2005-2007 years. It's never to late to blame ol' George W. but it sure is pathetic.

"That aid -- about $17 b... (Below threshold)
Second to Nun:

"That aid -- about $17 billion -- is the first piece of the administration's massive stimulus package that can be tracked locally. Much of it has followed a well-worn path to places that regularly collect a bigger share of federal grants and contracts, guided by formulas that have been in place for decades and leave little room for manipulation."

These same areas "regularly collect a bigger share of federal grants and contracts" and did so during the Bush White House when Congress was controlled by Republicans.

Nothing has changed. Those areas continue to see the most aid now, just as they did during the Bush administration.

Was that too simple? Does the truth not fit into the culture war waged by the right?

"the Obama administratio... (Below threshold)
P. Bunyan:

"the Obama administration wants to redesign 35% of gross domestic product from the center."

So in the first year of Obama we will become a 35% Communist country. Then they'll take a break and start acting somewhat in America's best interst next year, or at least appear to do so since it's an election year.

But God help us if the leftists hold power in 2010. 2011 will see us going 70% or more Communist at which point it will be impossible to stop the slide to total Communism short of a second America Revolution.

There's little left to do but pray that the ignorant and information retarded wake up and start paying attention before November 2010, and just in case they don't stock up on weapons and ammunition.

"Was that too simple? Do... (Below threshold)
Oyster:

"Was that too simple? Does the truth not fit into the culture war waged by the right?"

Gee, maybe it was so simple you didn't realize you were copying and pasting what was right there for all of us to read. I gotta tell ya, the part where it said, "Much of it has followed a well-worn path to places that regularly collect a bigger share of federal grants and contracts, guided by formulas that have been in place for decades and leave little room for manipulation," was a dead giveaway for me.

Pimps give de hoes de franc... (Below threshold)
Trajan:

Pimps give de hoes de franchise. Hoes pay de pimp back. Jes' like MackyDonald do, fer shizzle.

Would you have made the sam... (Below threshold)
hyperbolist:

Would you have made the same comment if the President was John Edwards or Hillary Clinton, Trajan?

Scandal! So let me... (Below threshold)
Jake:

Scandal!

So let me make sure I follow this logic: Stimulus is supposed to help areas of the country most effected by downturns and job losses. Job losses tend to focus around areas that are inherently more distressed. Inherently distressed Americans voted for Obama over McCain.

Ergo, Obama is creating scandal and is paying back his voters?

That's some good logic...

Should we be surprised by O... (Below threshold)
Thomas Jackson:

Should we be surprised by Obama's shredding of the Constitution or his thugocracy? What is depressing are his lemmings. Who could ever imagine so many people would embrace Marxism so willingly?

Our city is in a shitstorm ... (Below threshold)
Oyster:

Our city is in a shitstorm of a mess. Our mayor has his hand out begging for stimulus money because city officials have done a piss poor job of managing what they have.

Charlie Crist, in his infinite non-wisdom, decided that Floridians needed a property tax break, and there it was as a referendum on the last ballot; a doubling of the homestead exemption. That's when the law of unintended consequences reared its ugly head. And everybody thought they were going to save money so it passed. Then cities across the state decided to scramble to find more ways to charge fees to make up for the shortfall. Our homestead exemption was doubled and I got a whopping $125.00 in savings for the year. BUT! I also got a new bill in the mail from the city amounting to a new garbage fee and storm water run-off fee. The new bill was $120.00 a year.

The clincher is that every home in Jacksonville gets this new bill. Even those homes whose owners rent their property and are not eligible for the exemption. One would think the city would be happy with the new bonus.

No.

The city suddenly has a $70 million budget shortfall. This, on top of a new 1 penny sales tax increase that began 9 years ago to fund their "Better Jacksonville Plan". This plan was, among other things, supposed to fund a new courthouse. The first round of estimates for the courthouse was (we were told at the onset) was about $170 million. Now it's $350 million and 9 years later they haven't even broken ground yet.

But that hasn't stopped them. This sudden new "budget shortfall" has them scrambling for MORE money. Now they're considering a local income tax and/or a 14% increase in property taxes.

My husband and I are scrambling to hasten our retirement. I'm getting out of the city. In fact, we're likely to leave Florida altogether. I've had it. I'm tired of being pecked to death by ducks. Fees for this, fees for that and the constant whining by city council members and officials that they "just don't have enough money", and the tired old fear mongering that, "We'll have to cut funds for police and fire protection!"

As far as I'm concerned, Wyoming is sounding good.

F*ck it, why not pack up an... (Below threshold)
hyperbolist:

F*ck it, why not pack up and haul ass to the Cayman Islands, Oyster? If paying taxes and fees is the Worst Thing Ever, then isn't it obvious that you don't belong in contemporary North American/European society?

Whoa there canuckle-head.<b... (Below threshold)
SCSIwuzzy:

Whoa there canuckle-head.
At least down here in Canada's hat stand, citizens are allowed to have a say in how things are done. This includes the right to complain. And the right to move.
Inequitable taxes is a large part of why we had a revolution here a couple of centuries ago.
But why bother... I'm talking to a guy that thinks Smith supported government welfare societies...

"then isn't it obvious that... (Below threshold)
deusa:

"then isn't it obvious that you don't belong in contemporary North American/European society?"

There is nothing contemporary about taxation without representation. It's as old and rusty as those thumbscrews from the dark ages.

"Job losses tend to focu... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

"Job losses tend to focus around areas that are inherently more distressed. Inherently distressed Americans voted for Obama over McCain."

And it's just coincidental that the economically distressed areas happen to have a preponderance of long-term Democratic state and city administrations, isn't it?

hyper - "then isn't it ... (Below threshold)
Marc:

hyper - "then isn't it obvious that you don't belong in contemporary North American/European society?"

Um, didn't you forget Cannuckville?

For most of us I suspect we have no desire to live in the faux-utopia either.

Only paying back his most l... (Below threshold)
Flu-Bird:

Only paying back his most loyal bootlickers




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