Home » Congress » Stimulus Pork – Amtrak, NEA, TV, and Subsidies

Stimulus Pork – Amtrak, NEA, TV, and Subsidies

The WSJ examined the stimulus bill and what did they find? Mostly pork spending, with very little of what could optimistically called “stimulus”. We’re shocked — it’s no wonder Obama wants Congress to pass this quick so nobody can read it. The more you read, the more pork you find crammed in.

“Never let a serious crisis go to waste. What I mean by that is it’s an opportunity to do things you couldn’t do before.”

So said White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel in November, and Democrats in Congress are certainly taking his advice to heart. The 647-page, $825 billion House legislation is being sold as an economic “stimulus,” but now that Democrats have finally released the details we understand Rahm’s point much better. This is a political wonder that manages to spend money on just about every pent-up Democratic proposal of the last 40 years.

We’ve looked it over, and even we can’t quite believe it. There’s $1 billion for Amtrak, the federal railroad that hasn’t turned a profit in 40 years; $2 billion for child-care subsidies; $50 million for that great engine of job creation, the National Endowment for the Arts; $400 million for global-warming research and another $2.4 billion for carbon-capture demonstration projects. There’s even $650 million on top of the billions already doled out to pay for digital TV conversion coupons.

In selling the plan, President Obama has said this bill will make “dramatic investments to revive our flagging economy.” Well, you be the judge. Some $30 billion, or less than 5% of the spending in the bill, is for fixing bridges or other highway projects. There’s another $40 billion for broadband and electric grid development, airports and clean water projects that are arguably worthwhile priorities.

The National Endowment for the arts qualifies as stimulus? Digital TV? Is that what you had in mind? Oink Oink as everyone in Washington either rushes in to feed at the trough, or uses the bill to payoff political favors. Either way, the little guy gets stuck with a bill while the “stimulus” accomplishes nothing — except saddle the country with yet more debt (and payback political favors).

Of course, that’s one promise Obama will keep — running trillion dollar deficits for his entire term — and he’s off on a good start on that one.

Keeping in mind what the CBO has already stated —- most of the “stimulus” comes after two years — why the rush to pass this pork-fest? Even if it’s needed for economic relief, since the benefits come after two years no rush exists to pass it. Why not send the time and do it right? Perhaps could it be Team RePO (Reid/Pelosi/Obama) know what’s in the bill, and know if the citizens find out it’s not really stimulus but pork and returned political favors, the phones in Washington will melt down?

Nah, hope-n-change promised transparent accountability, so nobody’s trying to pull a fast one, right?

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