Corporate Welfare and Occupy Wall Street + More

Posted on Wed 11/09/2011 by

1


  Chronicle

The Foundation

“In the first place, it is to be remembered, that the general government is not to be charged with the whole power of making and administering laws: its jurisdiction is limited to certain enumerated objects, which concern all the members of the republic, but which are not to be attained by the separate provisions of any.” –James Madison

Editorial Exegesis

Corporate welfare from the community chest

“The Occupy Wall Street protesters aren’t good at articulating what they want, but one of their demands is ‘end corporate welfare.’ Well, welcome aboard. Some of us have been fighting crony capitalism for decades, and it’s good to have new allies if liberals have awakened to the dangers of the corporate welfare state. Corporate welfare is the offer of special favors — cash grants, loans, guarantees, bailouts and special tax breaks — to specific industries or firms. The government doesn’t track the overall cost of these programs, but in 2008 the Cato Institute made an attempt and came up with $92 billion for fiscal 2006, which is more than the U.S. government spends on homeland security. That annual cost may have doubled to $200 billion in this new era of industry bailouts and subsidies. … This industrial policy model of government as a financial partner with business can sound appealing, but the government’s record in picking winners and losers has been dreadful. Some of the most expensive flops include the Supersonic Transport plane of the mid-1970s, Jimmy Carter’s $2 billion Synthetic Fuels Corporation (the precursor to clean energy), Amtrak, which hasn’t turned a profit in four decades, and the most expensive public-private partnership debacle of all time, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which have lost $142 billion of taxpayer money. … Americans understand that powerful government invariably favors the powerful, who have the means and access to massage Congress and the bureaucracy that average citizens do not. This really is aid to the 1% paid by the other 99%. Yet the parade of subsidies gets longer each year, perhaps, as the old joke goes, because in Washington Republicans love corporations and Democrats love welfare. As House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan puts it: ‘How can we save billions of dollars from unjustified subsidy and entitlement programs, if we can’t get corporate America off the dole?'” –The Wall Street Journal

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Upright

“With nine days to go before the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) faces default, a Senate committee on Wednesday is expected to vote on a new plan to address the crisis. … The legislation would … provide USPS billions in cash from taxpayers. Specifically, it would hand over some $7 billion in supposedly ‘surplus’ contributions the government has made to the Federal Employees Retirement System. Such temporary surpluses, however, are common and are typically erased by normal financial swings or amortization over time. Transfer of the entire pot to USPS leaves taxpayers vulnerable if USPS later falls behind (which, given its condition, is not unlikely) while allowing needed structural reforms to be delayed. … USPS, and mail delivery itself, faces an uncertain future. Comprehensive change is needed to prevent massive losses and virtual bankruptcy. The reforms being considered by the Senate, however, fall short — while putting taxpayers even more at risk for the consequences of failure.” –The Heritage Foundation’s James Gattuso

“The Internal Revenue Service can follow individual people over the years because they can identify individuals from their Social Security numbers. During recent years, when ‘the top one percent’ as an income category has been getting a growing share of the nation’s income, IRS data show that actual flesh and blood people who were in the top one percent in 1996 had their incomes go down — repeat, DOWN — by a whopping 26 percent by 2005. … [M]ost people who are in the top one percent in a given year do not stay in that bracket over the years. If we are being serious … then our concern should be with what is happening to actual flesh and blood human beings, not what is happening to abstract income brackets.” –economist Thomas Sowell

“[T]he White House revealed that it would fight a GOP House subpoena for internal documents related to the half-trillion-dollar, stimulus-funded, now-bankrupt Solyndra solar energy loan bust. White House counsel Kathryn Ruemmler fumed that the information request placed an ‘unreasonable burden on the president’s ability to meet his constitutional duties.’ … Ruemmler further complained that the subpoena represents ‘a significant intrusion on executive branch interests.’ … While she paints the request as a last-minute surprise, the White House has been stonewalling on Solyndra all year long. And as Reason magazine’s Tim Cavanaugh points out: Compliance would be ‘the work of a few hours, at a time when the executive branch has 2.8 million employees. The whole thing could be done by staffers, leaving the president to focus on golf and fundraising and long, boring speeches.'” –columnist Michelle Malkin

Paper Trail

Insight

“The state is the great fiction by which everybody seeks to live at the expense of everybody else.” –French economist, statesman and author Frederic Bastiat (1801-1850)

“Back in the thirties we were told we must collectivize the nation because the people were so poor. Now we are told we must collectivize the nation because the people are so rich.” –William F. Buckley Jr. (1925-2008)

The Demo-gogues

A good pat on the back: “Well, I think we are better off now than we would have been if I hadn’t taken all the steps that I took.” –Barack Obama

“We were able to prevent America from going into a Great Depression. We were able to, after a series of quarterly GDP reports that were the worst that we’ve seen since the Great Depression, reverse it and get the economy to grow again. We’ve seen 20 straight months of consecutive job growth.” –Barack Obama

Sure thing: “I have to tell you, the least of my concerns at the moment is the politics of a year from now. I’m worried about putting people back to work right now because those folks are hurting and the U.S. economy is underperforming.” –Barack Obama

The BIG Lie: “From a policy standpoint I think it’s really important to know that President Obama was a job creator from day one. Now, was the ditch that we were in so deep that when you’re talking to people and they still don’t have a job, that’s any consolation to them? No. But I’ll tell you this: If President Obama and the House congressional Democrats had not acted, we would be at 15 percent unemployment.” –House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA)

Blame Republicans: “We’ve taken every important piece of the jobs bill and demanded that we have a separate vote. But our Republican colleagues in the Senate have voted unanimously to vote down each and every part so far: to restore 400,000 jobs for teachers, police officers, firefighters, putting them back in classrooms, on the streets and in the fire houses. … So, look, we can’t wait. If the Republican Congress won’t join us, we’re going to continue to act on our own to make the changes that we can to bring relief to middle-class families and those aspiring to get in the middle class.” –Joe Biden

Dezinformatsia

Non Compos Mentis: “Well, I’m going to be pilloried for this. I think get rid of the Second Amendment, the right to bear arms. I just think in the grand scheme of the rights that we have; the right of assembly, free speech, I mean, owning a gun does not, it does not tally on the same level as those other constitutional rights. And being more discreet about who gets to have a firearm and right to kill with a firearm, I think is something that would be in our national interest to revisit that.” –Huffington Post’s Alex Wagner when asked by HBO’s Bill Maher what she would change about the Constitution — she would take away the right that guarantees all the others

Pushing from the Left: “Do you not feel that by opposing [a tax hike on millionaires to pay for Obama’s jobs bill] you’re basically out of step with the American people on this issue? … Do you agree at all that there should be any kind of tax increases?” –ABC’s Christiane Amanpour to Speaker John Boehner

Another BIG Lie: “The American Dream is all about social mobility in a sense — the idea that anyone can make it. … The American dream seems to be thriving in Europe not at home.” –CNN’s Fareed Zalaria

Conspiracy theories: “[Herman Cain] is just the latest purchase by the Koch brothers. They purchased Michele Bachmann, they purchased Sarah Palin, for this purpose: it’s to go out and talk crazy talk. It’s to talk about taking more things away from the middle class and giving more to the rich. It’s about deregulating virtually everything to where the Koch brothers can go ahead and kill more people with their toxins.” –radio talk-show host Mike Papantonio

Newspulper Headlines:

‘We Are the 99%’: “Hollywood Street Brawl Involving 100 People in Costumes Leaves 1 Man Critical” –KCBS-TV website

Longest Books Ever Written: “What Occupy Wall Street Gets Wrong” –Reason.com

Somebody Alert Michelle Obama: “Fat Yields From Overseas ETFs” –SmartMoney.com

When Life Gives You Lemons: “Santorum Makes Stand in Iowa” –The Wall Street Journal

Bottom Story of the Day: “Barack Obama’s Jobs Drive Not Moving Polls” –Politico.com

(Thanks to The Wall Street Journal’s James Taranto)

Village Idiots

Random thoughts: “I’ve always thought that [allowing presidents a third term] should be the rule. I think as a practical matter, you couldn’t apply this to anyone who has already served, but going forward, I personally believe that should be the rule.” –Bill Clinton

Bad idea: “We need democracy in this country and not a democracy that is run by politicians that are bought by corporations. We need a democracy in this country where the people have the right to print money and not a nebulous Federal Reserve.” –Occupy San Francisco protester

Good grief: “I wanted to say something about, if they’re trying to find out who instigated this, much of, we owe a lot to the Arab Spring and the Democracy movement that were and are taking place across the Arab world. And we owe a lot to that young man in Tunisia who couldn’t take it anymore and set himself on fire to make this statement that really ignited this movement. But, but even before that, what got him upset? What got him politically charged was that he read the truth about the corruption of his own government that was supplied to him by Wikileaks. And where did Wikileaks get that information allegedly? From a young private, a gay soldier by the name of Bradley Manning. And, let’s give it up to Bradley Manning.” –leftist filmmaker Michael Moore to the Occupy Wall Street movement

Two weeks ago we published a humorous exchange during an interview between CNN’s Piers Morgan and Michael Moore. When asked to admit that he was “in the 1 percent,” Moore objected, “How can I be in the percent?” Morgan cut to the chase: “Because you’re worth millions.” This time around, Moore grew even more agitated when a CBS reporter again questioned him on his wealth. Here’s the exchange:

Reporter: How are you helping these [Occupy protesters]?
Moore: Because I do well, I want taxes raised on people who do well, including mine.
Reporter: How are you helping these people with your $50 million?
Moore: I don’t have $50 million.
Reporter: That’s what it’s rumored you are worth.
Moore: Well, really. Is that what you do is sell rumors?
Reporter: We’re asking you for the truth.
Moore: You’re just punk media is all you are. You lie. You lie to people. Stop lying to people. Stop lying.
Reporter: Are you not part of the 1 percent?
Moore: Just don’t lie, okay?

Marine Corps Birthday

On Nov. 10, 1775, the Second Continental Congress resolved to create two battalions of Continental Marines for the War of Independence from Britain. In 1798, President John Adams signed the Act establishing the United States Marine Corps. The 13th Commandant of the Marine Corps, General John A. Lejeune, issued Marine Corps Order No. 47, Series 1921, directing that on Nov. 10 every year, in honor of the Corps’ birthday, the Order’s summary of the history, mission and tradition of the Corps be read to every command.

Short Cuts

“You know the real trouble with socialism? There are no good guys. You’re either on one end of the equation sucking up whatever you didn’t earn and telling yourself you’re entitled to it, or you’re on the other end trying to prove you’re smarter and more beneficent than everyone else, when you don’t have a clue. You’re either the drug addict or the drug dealer.” –columnist Arnold Ahlert

“[Barack Obama] says all patriotism is equal — the patriotism of Greeks, of British, of everyone. He rips American ‘arrogance’ while overseas. He excoriates American consumerism, all the while maintaining that if we don’t consume more, we’ll go bankrupt. He says it’s unfortunate that America has a leading role in the world. … The rest of the world still despises us, only now they think of us as easy marks, too. … The American public now has the responsibility of solving his psychological dissonance by throwing him out of office, allowing him to fully embrace his global agenda without the baggage of his national identity.” –columnist Ben Shapiro

“A man from Kenya won the New York City Marathon. This was a huge upset, because everyone thought a different man from Kenya would win the marathon.” –comedian Conan O’Brien

“Occupy Wall Street protestors complained that homeless people have infiltrated the park for the free food. They’re just furious about it. Everybody’s sitting around wishing that there was a way to help the downtrodden without a lot of losers trying to get in on it.” –comedian Argus Hamilton

Semper Vigilo, Fortis, Paratus et Fidelis!
Nate Jackson for The Patriot Post Editorial Team

*****(Please pray for our Armed Forces standing in harm’s way around the world, and for their families — especially families of those fallen Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and Coast Guardsmen, who granted their lives in defense of American liberty.)

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