Well, it passed — do you feel stimulated yet?

Well, the $819 billion “stimulus” bill was approved by the House of Representatives today, and will next work its way through the Senate before being placed on the Resolute desk and signed by President Barack Hussein Obama.

According to The Wall Street Journal and The Heritage Foundation, here are some of the highlights from the legislation approved by a 244 to 188 margin:

  • $7.7 billion for various upgrades and work done on federal buildings
  • $5.2 billion for voter fraud experts ACORN and other “neighborhood stabilization” groups
  • $2.4 billion for carbon capture projects
  • $1 billion for AMTRAK
  • $650 million–more–for coupons for the conversion to digital television
  • $600 million for federal automobiles
  • $400 million for research into global warming
  • $335 million for the prevention of sexually transmitted diseases
  • $50 million to the National Endowment for the Arts

I have difficulty seeing how, other than perhaps the money earmarked for government cars, any of this is even close to stimulative as far as the American economy is concerned. AMTRAK has been steadily losing money for decades, and should have been sold by the government long ago. People still using rabbit ears on their televisions have had at least three years of warning to scrape together or pester family members for the $40 necessary to purchase a converter box; I still cannot wrap my head around why it is the responsibility of the federal government, and therefore a financial burden on taxpayers, for people to watch television. Both the money for the carbon capture products and the research into global warming are included because of this media-perpetuated farce and facade for global socialism; the cap-and-trade legislation which will result will damage the economy in the long-term, and the money spent now sure won’t help it in the short term.

As for the others, we heard today that the United States Postal Service is considering dropping Saturday mail delivery in order to save costs. I actually know a few postmen aside from the kind folks who deliver mail to our house, and I would love for them to get more time off to spend with their families, but at the same time I wonder what kind of effect this move could have on American business, I see the money we’re throwing at the arts and at the prevention of sexually transmitted diseases–perhaps former President Bill Clinton can have an advisory position in the Obama administration after all–and wonder how it and more could have been better spent.

And don’t even get me started on ACORN.

This whole nightmare could have been managed better. We needed a package heavy on tax cuts, something that would have short- and long-term benefit. Not this.

Radio talk show king Rush Limbaugh has a few good ideas, and he explains them in an op-ed piece scheduled to run in tomorrow’s Wall Street Journal. Here’s a taste:


Congress is currently haggling over how to spend $900 billion generated by American taxpayers in the private sector. (It’s important to remember that it’s the people’s money, not Washington’s.) In a Jan. 23 meeting between President Obama and Republican leaders, Rep. Eric Cantor (R., Va.) proposed a moderate tax cut plan. President Obama responded, “I won. I’m going to trump you on that.”

Yes, elections have consequences. But where’s the bipartisanship, Mr. Obama? This does not have to be a divisive issue. My proposal is a genuine compromise.

Fifty-three percent of American voters voted for Barack Obama; 46% voted for John McCain, and 1% voted for wackos. Give that 1% to President Obama. Let’s say the vote was 54% to 46%. As a way to bring the country together and at the same time determine the most effective way to deal with recessions, under the Obama-Limbaugh Stimulus Plan of 2009: 54% of the $900 billion — $486 billion — will be spent on infrastructure and pork as defined by Mr. Obama and the Democrats; 46% — $414 billion — will be directed toward tax cuts, as determined by me.

Then we compare. We see which stimulus actually works. This is bipartisanship! It would satisfy the American people’s wishes, as polls currently note; and it would also serve as a measurable test as to which approach best stimulates job growth.

I say, cut the U.S. corporate tax rate — at 35%, among the highest of all industrialized nations — in half. Suspend the capital gains tax for a year to incentivize new investment, after which it would be reimposed at 10%. Then get out of the way! Once Wall Street starts ticking up 500 points a day, the rest of the private sector will follow. There’s no reason to tell the American people their future is bleak. There’s no reason, as the administration is doing, to depress their hopes. There’s no reason to insist that recovery can’t happen quickly, because it can.

In this new era of responsibility, let’s use both Keynesians and supply-siders to responsibly determine which theory best stimulates our economy — and if elements of both work, so much the better. The American people are made up of Republicans, Democrats, independents and moderates, but our economy doesn’t know the difference. This is about jobs now.

Limbaugh’s plan is nothing ground-breaking or Earth-shattering. In fact, I’ve discussed these very measures on these pages at America’s Right for a while now and, believe me, I am a moron when it comes to the economy. The thing is, just like I don’t have to be a physicist to understand the concepts of inertia or gravity, I don’t have to be an economist to understand such fundamental rules. Apparently, however, the Democrats are either just not willing to listen, or are so entrenched in the idea of maintaining power that they would rather reward those who can get them there and, once again, put party before country. Sad.

Today’s disappointment, however, was not without a silver lining. Actually, I spotted two.

First, the public outcry over the $100 million and $200 million earmarked for contraceptives and the rehabilitation of the National Mall, respectively, was enough to cause the Democrats to pull the provisions from the bill. Those changes, among others, were enough to bring the price tag down from $825 billion to $819 billion. While the monetary difference may not be much, it shows that we can still get fired up, and we can still make a difference. The second silver lining, though, was perhaps the best, and I hope it is a sign of things to come:

NOT A SINGLE REPUBLICAN VOTED IN FAVOR OF THE BILL.

Earlier today, I asked you to call your congressmen and congresswomen and plead with them to do the right thing. If your representative is a Republican or if your representative is one of the eleven Democrats who did the right thing, PLEASE call them tomorrow and give a hearty “thank you” . . . especially if your representative is one of the latter. (Click HERE for the full roll call, and click HERE for the congressional directory.)

If we can show our appreciation as much–if not exponentially more–than we pleaded our case, perhaps we can show the Republicans that sticking to conservative principles will certainly be rewarded. Perhaps this can be a defining moment in terms of the change which needs to come to the GOP before the mid-term election of 2010.

I certainly hope so, but that doesn’t mean we’re not going to continue to keep watch.

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Comments

  1. Marie says:

    Can someone please explain to me why “pay to play” is any different than “play to get paid off”? Why is it not illegal for the Obama stimulus bill to funnel money to Acorn?

  2. Bobby says:

    900$ of pork here we come!

  3. Matt says:

    Obama is trying to stimulate Americans with his package – that has to be illegal!

  4. Anonymous says:

    cant wait to find out voted for and against.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Jeff

    OMG. Now they absolutely MUST create the black hole. There’s nowhere else to hide the National Debt !!!

  6. Anonymous says:

    “Bye-bye Ms. American Pie.” Disgusting.

    Linda
    Irvine, California

  7. Bodenzee says:

    Could someone please explain to me how bills like this come together? Six hundred forty seven (647) pages in so little time.

    Immediately after 9/11 The Patriot Act appeared. I have had an image of a flock of government functionaries who, over many years, have lusted after numerous ideas for legislation that they’d like to see passed (many of which dangerously erode our freedoms) but they realize that the chance of them passing and becoming law is zero. So they just write it down, stuff it into a desk drawer and wait for a disaster…any disaster. Then, under the cover of a disaster, when anything goes, they haul out their onerous ideas and our “leaders” enact them into law. Many of our leaders didn’t fully read, let alone comprehend, the patriot Act before voting for it. Why would I expect better behavior this week?

    Is that what happened here with HR 1?

    Did we elect leaders or idiots to the House and Senate?

  8. Anonymous says:

    Jeff said,

    “Now, it’s up to the Senate.”

    Actually, I think it’s up to us in 2010 if not sooner. Right now, we’re on our own.

    JV

  9. suek says:

    Good guys and bad guys are easy this time:

    All (every one of them!) Republicans plus 11 Dems voted against it.

    All Dems minus the 11 voted for it.

  10. Anonymous says:

    The Republicans were UNANIMOUS in their opposition!!

    Hip, Hip, Hooray!!!!

    This is the first step in the 2010 mid-term election of Reppublicans.

    It will be interesting to see what the Senate does after this . . .

  11. sharon says:

    I heard every Republican voted against it… I am hopeful that is the case. We have to start now with the senate.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Democrat’s “OWN” It.
    Here’s the List from c-span.

    http://clerk.house.gov/evs/2009/roll046.xml

  13. cher-pa says:

    Thanks to the Republican party for standing united today and to all who called or emailed their representatives.Now lets hold the Democrats accountable for every penny that they give out.Enjoy your cocktail party Obama and company for I feel a tea party coming around the bend.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Here’s a list of the votes:

    http://www.opencongress.org/roll_call/show/5176

  15. Anonymous says:

    Thankfully no Republicans gave support-Dems get total credit for this garbage legislation.

  16. Ben Tover says:

    All Republicans voted against it and 9 Blue Dog Democrats. No doubt the criticism of the Republicans for not crossing the aisle and working together (aka capitulating). Afterall the Dems took out the redo on the Mall resodding and condoms from the stimulus package! What more could they be demanding? Maybe tax cuts for those who actually pay taxes?

  17. Central Illinois says:

    I am lucky to have a Republican in my district that had the cajones to stand up and vote NO. Persuading Dick Durbin and Roland Burress might prove to be more of a challenge, if not a lost cause…

  18. Anonymous says:

    Please make sure you thank your Republican rep for voting NO. Also consider writing the 10-11 democrats who stood up for America. They need to know that they are supported as I am sure they took lots of heat even more so than Republicans. What an encouragement to them if all of us, even those outside their district, flooded them with cards and letters.

    Lastly, if you’re a Georgian, read on and consider attending.

    Georgia FreedomWorks chapters have hit the ground running across the state in the past few months. Georgia activists have the potential to truly become a movement pushing for more Freedom on the local, state, and federal level. So, to kick-off this New Year and make plans for the coming months we are holding a state-wide meeting.

    When: Friday, January 30th
    7:00 pm

    Where: Gwinnett Justice Center
    75 Langley Drive
    Lawrenceville, GA 30045

    This is a great opportunity to hear about issues that affect us all and what you as a citizen can do. There will be a Georgia All-Stars line-up of speakers including State Representative and winner of the FreedomWorks Legislative Entrepreneur Award for 2008 Tom Graves, State Senator David Shafer who will speak about zero-based budgeting for Georgia, and Georgia Insurance Commissioner John Oxendine.

    If you have friends or family who care about the freedom agenda and should be involved with FreedomWorks, this would be a great introductory meeting for them to see what we’re about and how they can get involved.

    Prior to the main event at 7:00, there will be a special activist training session from 5:30 to 6:30 pm to teach you the tactics you need to advance good policy in Georgia. We will be covering the successful strategies that the Obama campaign used. If you want to become an effective grassroots leader this is one event you don’t want to miss.

    Friday is going to be an exciting evening that will set the course for 2009. Please plan on coming and we hope to see you then!

  19. Anonymous says:

    Hey, I guess there are only 11 dems who really want to keep their jobs!

  20. tm says:

    Well look what I found – and guess what if you connect all the dots on the whole fallout of our economy and who was behind this and the election of chairman bobo – look who is now writing an op ed article for the financial times – I know drudge has linked it as well
    he is who single handedly went after the USA ! Why ? because he loathes Us.
    Dr. No the evil little genius

    http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/49b1654a-ed60-11dd-bd60-0000779fd2ac.html

  21. Anonymous says:

    “I say, cut the U.S. corporate tax rate — at 35%, among the highest of all industrialized nations — in half. Suspend the capital gains tax for a year to incentivize new investment, after which it would be reimposed at 10%. Then get out of the way!”

    Now THAT’s what I call a stimulus plan. But Ms. Pelosi says that they consulted bi-partisan economists and they ALL told them this (the package as passed) was hte way to do it. Are these guys second grade economists? Or are they just recent grads of our inadequate and failed school system?

  22. Mad Mama says:

    Thanks, tm, for the link: http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/49b1654a-ed60-11dd-bd60-0000779fd2ac.html

    Soros said: “In addition, banking regulations need to be internationally co-ordinated. Market regulations should be global as well. National governments also need to co-ordinate their macroeconomic policies in order to avoid wide currency swings and other disruption.

    This is a condensed, almost shorthand account of what needs to be done to turn the global economy around. It should give a sense of how difficult a task it is.”

    Well, George, how about we dump your guys, the Federal Reserve, a private bank to which we’re paying interest, to make our own money like the Constitution says we can and should do for ourselves, and go to a debt-free system? Great idea, huh? The Framers thought so. They saw what the bankers did to England. So let’s do this: The US can print, distribute and control its own money and NOT pay you interest. Heck, we don’t even want the Gold Standard back, since y’all have already snatched it from Fort Knox, plus we don’t need it. We’re good for it. Americans are like that. Of course, you and your little friends won’t be able to control the market anymore, but the good side of that arrangement is that it will be stable, not subject to your whims, because we know wealth doesn’t evaporate, it merely changes hands. Gosh, George, we’re tired of your fingerprints all over our money. You will, of course, have a little hissy fit and contract the money even more before we can get it all off the streets, but it’ll be temporary and you and your buddies will be gone forever, the banks will stabilize, and so will our taxes and in a few years, we’ll pay the national debt off–the one caused by The Federal Reserve’s excessive interest rate and manipulation of the market. No stock market crash or depression has ever happened without the banking cartel pushing the button. After that, let’s put an Amendment in the Constitution that makes it illegal for the US to turn over minting and financial control to outside ‘contractors’. We aren’t interested in global banking, i.e. your pocketbook. And George, it’s not that difficult of a task. We just do it.

    Gee, do you think this is what Bush had in mind when he left that last EO? Know any lawyers? Let’s ask ‘em. I think we need to check on the Fed’s character. We’ll run some politicians through too.

  23. Gail B says:

    Well, I learned what this was all about on Re-Boortz tonight (this a.m.–haven’t been to sleep yet). Obama apparently doesn’t give a rat’s rosterium about stimulating the economy. What he is interested in is “fluffing” his departments and agendas. What HE wants, not what America NEEDS, is what he shot through the House. If he had just focused on the economy in this bill, he wouldn’t have gotten any of his personal pork through at a later time without causing an even louder uproar. He had to strike while the iron was hot, and that, my friends, makes sense!!!

    Sen. Isakson, R-GA, according to a press release I received, “spoke on the Senate floor last week and argued that Congress must take steps to jump-start housing demand in order to boost the slumping economy. On January 15, Isakson introduced the Fix Housing First Homebuyer Tax Credit Act to expand the homebuyer tax credit passed by Congress last year.” The text of his speech followed.

    Folks, what Isakson said makes good SENSE, yet no one listened to him on the other side of the aisle. When homes aren’t moving, carpeting and other businesses related to homebuilding and even remodeling stop. People are living in their cars now because of this. But more important than putting people into homes and stimulating the economy is rewarding ACORN for the work it did in getting our president elected. This was not a Stimulus Package for the economy; it is nothing short of special interest and political payback.

    Look at it this way: If Obama really cared about us, wouldn’t he be trying to help us instead of his own interests? He would not even consider a six-month tax holiday, and it was brought up! They would not hear of such a sensible thing–to put the money in the hands of those who NEED it, who would boost their own economy, who would pay down credit debt, who would appreciate being able to buy an extra loaf of bread or gallon of milk.

    I am going to look up the 11 Democrats who voted conservatively and hand-write them each a letter of appreciation. It doesn’t matter whether I’m in their district or even their state. We owe them a voice of thanks for their integrity and courage.

    Now that I understand what we’ve been up against, I’ll see about the next in line of importance: Getting to sleep!

  24. Anonymous says:

    I’d like to see a republican senator with enough backbone to filibuster this stimulus plan into oblivion. Please urge your local republican senator to stand up and squash this bill before it’s too late.

  25. Katherine says:

    I’ll agree with regard to the TV conversion. WHY should we all have to pay for that? How is letting people watch TV something that stimulates the economy? Seems like it stimulates laziness to me.

    But being the democrat that I am, I am happy with some of the others you mention.

  26. John Canuck says:

    I’m Canadian but according to the following definition of standing:

    http://www.lectlaw.com/def2/s064.htm

    don’t most American taxpayers now have legal standing to challenge Obama in a court of law? Because now you have a direct causal link between Obama becoming president and an injury to you regarding this debt laden badly named stimulus bill.

    At this point I don’t know why a class action suit of at least a minimum of 50,000 Americans can’t now sue Obama to prove he was born in the United States. If this stimulus bill can’t be accepted as a legitimate injury by a judge in order to allow legal standing than nothing will!

  27. toto says:

    This really makes me mad. At the same time it comes as no surprise that ACORN would receive money, after all, they were instramental in helping the dummycrats get total control of government. I think, for the dummycrats, that they are lucky we are a civilized nation, otherwise I think you would see some sort of coup take place, and who knows, maybe we will yet.

    There are so many better ways to help the economy, and I’ve said this before; Lou Dobbs once said the government bailouts will total about $1.3 trillion, if you took all the home loans out there and totalled them up, you’d come up with, quess what, about $1.3 Trillion! Now imagine how the economy would rebound if that were to happen, but alas, it won’t, our government would never allow the power to be put in the hands of the people, I mean why would we want to honor the constitution now? If we honored that part of the constitution, then they’d have to honor the part about proving one is eligible to hold POTUS in the first place. We all know there is something suspicious there.

  28. Jill says:

    Katherine – Here’s my thought. If Obama’s mindless minions can’t watch the MSM how else would they get their marching orders.

  29. Ian Thorpe says:

    Jeff, You’re a genius. bill Clinton would be the perfect person to head up Obama’s $335 million project to prevent sexually transmitted diseases. After all, it’s impossible to get the clap from a cigar.

  30. Lilly says:

    I just thought this was a bit funny. A report came out that the GOP found that the stimulus rebates could pay illegal immigrants. http://www.foxnews.com/politics/first100days/2009/01/29/senate-republicans-warn-stimulus-rebates-pay-illegal-immigrants/
    What I thought was really really funny is Reid’s comment in this…
    “This bill has nothing to do with anything illegal as far as immigration goes.”

    as far as immigration goes, but a lot of other things maybe!

  31. sharon says:

    Heads up! I just read an article that Obama is pulling out all the stops now… apparently he is putting his foot down… anyway, they are creating a tv commercial (on what money?) maybe left over from the campaign?

    he is getting with union members all over the country to call republican senators to get them to come on over to his agenda!! We have to start on the senators now.

    As I am from MI, I can tell you that the union members (not all)will follow in lock step.

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20090129/bs_afp/uspoliticsobamaeconomyhousevote

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