Monday, July 28, 2008

About That Mess Bush Is Leaving Obama... Closin' In On Half A Trillion Dollar Deficit


"It's good to be the boss," my old boss you to say to me when he was in a lighthearted mood. He was the chairman; I was the president. We had a few hundred people working with us. And it was good to be boss, responsibilities not withstanding. I have a feeling being president of the United States is immeasurably more amazing and awesome. And I sure hope it will be for Obama. But I don't see how it can be. It's like Bush and the GOP have systematically gone about wrecking the government they loathe and despise. They are the living, breathing, walking, talking evidence of the old Republican adage: "Government doesn't work; elect me and I'll prove it." They sure did!

This afternoon, the NY Times mentions the record deficit the Bush Regime is bequeathing the next president: $482 billion, a hell of a different figure than the flourishing, hard-won surpluses Clinton left Bush. And the story gets worse.
The deficit announced by Jim Nussle, the White House budget director, does not reflect the full cost of military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, the potential $50 billion cost of another economic stimulus package or the prospect of steeper losses in tax revenue or further declines in the housing market.

Mr. Nussle also predicted Monday that the deficit would more than double in the current 2008 fiscal year-- to $389 billion, from $162 billion in 2007.

The deficit projected for 2009 would be the largest in absolute terms. The White House and many economists prefer to measure the deficit as a share of the economy.

...“I think that the fiscal year 2009 deficit could get a lot worse, if you add in war costs, there could well be a real drop-off in revenues from this year’s slowing economy and of course if there are further problems in the housing market, if the federal government does have to inject some money into Freddie and Fannie, that could get worse too," [according to Robert Bixby, executive director of the center-right Concord Coalition

At 3.3% of the economy, at least it isn't as bad as it was in the Reagan years. The problem for Obama, of course is that it "will crimp the ability of the next president to carry out ambitious spending plans of any kind," which is precisely what Bush's brain (Rove), Cheney, Norquist and other GOP long-range thinkers had in mind. They don't want government to be able to work for the common good. To them that's godless communism.

In a statement that only someone who listens to tapes of Rush Limbaugh when the heroic figure isn't on the air could give any credence, Nussle blames the Democrats for letting spending get out of hand, although, still lying without blinking, he told reporters that Bush's budget blueprint remains on track to achieve balance with surpluses of $58 billion in 2012 and $29 billion in 2013." [Can we incarcerate or incinerate all of them if they're wrong?] Expect to hear lots more of Nussel-like crap from McCain and his lobbyist brigade.
Representative John Spratt, Democrat of South Carolina and chairman of the House Budget Committee, said the deficit figures confirmed “the dismal legacy of the Bush administration.”

“Under its policies,” he said, “the largest surpluses in history have been converted into the largest deficits in history.”

Becky Greenwald, whose feisty come-from-behind campaign has suddenly moved into position to challenge rubber stamp, 7-term incumbent Tom Latham (R-IA) in a district trending distinctly Democratic, pointed out that since Latham is a member of the Appropriations Committee he was in a position to rein in Bush's irresponsible spending. Instead, he rubber stamped everything, while Latham helped wave the fiscal magic wand to turn record surpluses into record deficits, opposing earmark reform and voting again and again to raise the debt ceiling so Bush could continue the occupation of Iraq.

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