Leonardo"s Notebook by Mattheus Mei

I have been impressed with the urgency of doing. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Being willing is not enough; we must do.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

The Do Nothing Congress?

This week's Economist has an awesome article on the struggle between the President and Congress. It's titled the Do Nothing Congress and the subtitle is But who's fault is that? My favourite conservative British magazine basically lambasts the Republicans and their President over their woefully transparent tactic to only now reign in spending in order to salvage their philosophical foothold on fiscal conservatism. And to their detriment they are picking on the Dem's big ticket items while still trying to demand ever more money for their war in Iraq.

As far as the budget goes, the Republican minority clearly hopes the blame will rebound on the Democrats. Mr Bush has suddenly and conveniently adopted the language of fiscal restraint. He has argued that the Democrats' budget plan, which called for a small increase in domestic spending, was excessive and wasteful. He has doggedly stuck to his own budget outline, which calls for $23 billion less domestic expenditure than Congress's first plan, even as the Democrats have offered to meet him somewhere in between. (The Democrats' first proposed discretionary budget came to $956 billion, next to which the $23 billion that is causing the problem looks pretty small.) Meanwhile, the president's defence request is a 10% increase on last year's at $481 billion—and that excludes $196 billion for the campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan. (emphasis added)

Hmmm how idiotic can one man and his party be?

Republicans also may be holding the budget hostage in order to force the majority to authorise unfettered Iraq funding, which would rile the Democratic base. Still, the president has shown that he can extract his Iraq money from the Democratic Congress regardless by exploiting his veto and Democrats' unwillingness to block all funding while American soldiers are in the field. The Republicans can probably secure their war money without giving much on domestic spending. (emphasis added)

So who is the party of Patriots? The Dems are more than willing to concede some directed funding for the saftey and security of the troops while funding social programmes that are much needed, but Bush is determined to get as much blood from a turnip as possible - the sad reality is, that amount is climbing daily and it's at the expense of soldier and citizen alike!

As the article states with it's conclusion: Americans do trust Dems to come through with a truly wholistic Domestic Policy, and if Republicans are so hell-bent on now sticking to their guns then they're asking to be handed their a$$es on a plate come November. Now if only the South Carolina Legislature would take note...

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