Aug 18, 2010

Congressional Shenanigans, Taking From the Food Stamp Program to Pay for Their Programs

Russell Berman, in a recent article in THE HILL, reports that the legislation proudly pushed through Congress as “Not adding to the deficit” has actually done so by tapping funds from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or commonly called the food stamp program.

”The proposed cuts would come on top of a 13.6 percent food stamp reduction in the $26 billion Medicaid and education state funding bill that President Obama signed this week.”

The cuts he refers to is for Michelle Obama’s $8 billion child-nutrition bill. Since it is not considered emergency legislation it needs to have its’ funding defined in the bill. The bill is at the center of the first lady’s “Let’s Move” initiative and the people that want it pushed through don’t want to take the time to establish a new tax to cover its cost. Congress has so over used the concept of taxing-the-rich, they propose taking the money from food stamps.

When the Food Stamp Program runs short on funds they will push through emergency legislation to cover the short fall and will blame the Republicans for not caring for the poor if they balk. Emergency legislation does not need to specify where the money is coming from and is just added to the deficit. That way they will be able to pass their pet projects and appear to be doing only what is necessary.

There is a real need by the states to find addition funds to cover their lack of discipline. The state aid bill has been called a union bailout bill because the funds are designated to support the wage levels and jobs of state unionized workers. But why did they need some money for Medicaid? Could it be that they are just replacing funds to Medicaid that they pillaged to cover the cost of one of their other initiatives. And so it goes, what we don’t know won’t hurt us.

Last week I watched a Democrat Senator tell Cavuto that the State Aid Bill does not add a penny to the deficit and that there is even some extra in it to pay the deficit down. Remember this the next time you hear any of our Proud Elected Officials brag about anything. Not once has this been brought out in any of the discussions before the bill was passed.

Link to Mr. Bermans’ article: Dems may use food stamp money to pay for Michelle Obama's nutrition initiative

Aug 17, 2010

Obama Has Finally Found a Promise He Can Keep

During his campaign Obama promised that he will tax the coal burning utilities to death. The EPA has one public hearing left before they pass some very tight restrictions on carbon emissions that affect half of our nations power needs.
Here is a link to what the EPA has to say about this new set of rules:

Standards for the Management of Coal Combustion Residuals Generated by Commercial Electric Power Producers

From a Business Journal article, New EPA regs could prompt Constellation to close some coal plants, there is a good chance that Constellation will close at least three of their power plants when the regulations do pass. At another plant they have spent $1 billion installing scrubbers in anticipation of the new regulations. With the new regs affecting half of this countries production, rates which have been steadily rising, have only one direction to go.

Obama tried to push his “Cap and Trade” legislation but Democrats balked at forcing through one more of his initiatives after driving up the deficit three times higher than at any time in the past. Of course his buddies in Chicago were very disappointed at this because the yet-to=be established trading floor for the carbon credits will be located in the Chicago Mercantile Exchange.

Getting rid of a known source of air pollution is important but to do so in a way that restricts, reduces and drives the cost up on power generation is incredibly irresponsible at this time. As with most of Obama’s initiatives his prime concern seems to be getting something in place so he can tweak it later without publicity or transparency. Any concern that he expounds is betrayed when the details come out.