Archive for February 1, 2009

Guess We Can Say Those Filling Obama’s Cabinet are Unpatriotic

Remember this from the New York Post?

WASHINGTON – Joe Biden wrapped Old Glory around Barack Obama’s plan to raise taxes on wealthy Americans, saying the rich should be “patriotic” and fork over more cash.

“It’s time to be patriotic, time to jump in, time to be part of the deal, time to help get America out of the rut,” Obama’s running mate said on ABC’s “Good Morning America.”

Obama wants to raise taxes on those earning higher than $250,000, but he proposes tax cuts that he says will benefit 95 percent of Americans.

Hell, his own cabinet choices don’t even pay taxes at the lower rate, let alone a higher rate. I suppose those higher tax rates are only for people that actually work for a living. Who knew that being in government meant that you didn’t have to pay your taxes?

I am sick, sick, SICK of this. Perhaps routinely appointing criminals to government positions works in Chicago but it sure as hell doesn’t impress the rest of us. Apparently Diogenes would have been hard-pressed to find an honest Democrat. Obama has certainly not been able to locate one with both hands and a search committee.

In a statement last night, White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said: “Senator Daschle brought these issues to the Finance Committee’s attention when he submitted his nomination forms, and we are confident the committee is going to schedule a hearing for him very soon and he will be confirmed.”

Well, there you go, straight from the horse’s ass mouth. After all, who cares about a little thing like not paying $128,000 in taxes?

Tom Daschle - once considered assured of breezing through his confirmation as U.S. secretary of Health and Human Services – soon will face tough questioning on Capitol Hill about underpaying his income taxes and his extensive work for clients in the health care industry, Republican aides said Saturday.

While I’m not a professional politician* and don’t care to be accused as such, this looks like a huge conflict of interest to me.

*Professional whores have MUCH higher codes of ethics than professional politicians.

And check this out:

New York’s Charles Rangel and five other Democratic members of the House enjoyed a trip to the Caribbean sponsored in part by Citigroup (see above) in November – after Congress had approved the $700B bailout for financial firms (including Citigroup).

The members no doubt will object to the terms “junket,” but that shoe fits. The National Legal and Policy Center, a watchdog group, has asked Neil Barofsky, the special inspector general for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) to investigate the Nov. 6-9 excursion to the island of St. Maarten.

It was called the Caribbean Multi-Cultural Business Conference, but “the primary purpose … for most participants appeared to be to take a vacation,” said the NLPC. And not only was the timing lousy, but “corporate sponsorship of such an event was banned by House rules adopted on March 1, 2007, in response to the (lobbyist Jack) Abramoff scandal,” the group pointed out.

Joining Rangel on that trip were Donald Payne of New Jersey, Sheila Jackson-Lee of Texas, Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick of Michigan, Bennie Thompson of Mississippi and Donna Christenson, delegate from the U.S. Virgin Islands.

I hope they had a nice vacation financed by our stolen money. Actually, I hope they picked up an incurable disease and will die screaming in agony.

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Florida Screwed Out of Stimulus Package by Feds

Florida leaders counting on more than $3.5 billion from a massive federal stimulus package to shore up the state’s education budget learned Thursday there could be a catch.

The state may not qualify for the money because the Legislature has cut its schools budget too much.

The U.S. House of Representatives passed an $819 billion economic-recovery plan Wednesday. Under that bill, money in a special “state stabilization fund” would go only to states that could fund schools for the next two years at the levels they had in the 2005-06 school year.

But the state is below that threshold. In fact, school funding coming directly from the state is now lower than it was in the 2004-05 school year. With Florida’s budget shortfall for next year ballooning toward $4 billion, it’s not clear it could meet that requirement.

The schools were hoping for a miracle to save education but it appears that they’re not going to get one. I recently spoke to the head of the school board about which programs would be affected by the budget cuts and was told that everything was on the table for budget cuts.

State-required testing is a huge expense (FCAT); I would not be surprised if education reform would end up having to be cut so that public education could continue.

In Florida, state funding of education is based largely on student population. As the state’s student population has decreased in recent years, its per-student spending has declined as well.

As housing prices soared, families with children were increasingly left behind and unable to purchase (or make payments on) houses. As foreclosure rates started to rise, construction employment declined, and more families left the state. Unemployment rates are now quickly rising. Students in high school may have to go to work full time at a marginal job to help support the family. Enrollment rates continue to decline as children with families move to another state or high school students leave.

To get federal funding assistance, though, the schools will have to receive the same funding as when employment, state revenues, and school enrollment were at the top of the cycle, not the bottom.

Again, it appears that the feds want to reward the states that have made no attempt to cut costs.

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