Spending: Democrats Still Don't Get It

Discussion in 'Politics' started by KenH, Aug 31, 2006.

  1. KenH

    KenH
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    August 31, 2006
    Spending: Dems Still Don't Get It

    by David Boaz
    David Boaz is executive vice president of the Cato Institute and author of Libertarianism: A Primer.

    Connecticut Democratic Senate candidate Ned Lamont is calling himself "a fiscal conservative."

    With out-of-control federal spending, special-in terest earmarks and deficits projected at nearly $2 trillion over the next decade, it's no surprise why. But what kind of fiscal conservative is Lamont? He accuses the Bush administration of fiscal profligacy and attacks it for "starving needed social investment" in the same breath.

    In his campaign materials, Lamont promises to spend more money on national health insurance, universal preschool, all-day schools, "an overarching plan for clean energy and energy independence" and "a serious, long-range infrastructure plan to upgrade our schools, public transportation, highways, our sewage treatment and our levees in below sea-level areas [and] a transportation strategy which interconnects cities and suburbs, inner cities and jobs and affordable housing, and ports and airports." Sounds pretty expensive.

    Yes, Lamont has declared his opposition to budget earmarks, but earmarks - while notorious, like the "Bridge to Nowhere" in Alaska - are only a tiny part of the federal budget. Nowhere does he promise a balanced budget, much less a spending cut.

    Now, Democrats are quite right to mock the Republican claim to fiscal responsibility. As my colleague Stephen Slivinski writes in his new book Buck Wild, President Bush and the GOP Congress are spending the taxpayers' money faster than Bill Clinton - indeed, even faster than Lyndon Johnson in the heyday of the Great Society. Slivinski shows that federal spending has soared by 45 percent in just five years of Republican government.

    Some seem to think that this means Democrats have changed. As Peter Beinart of The New Republic put it in a recent column, "The struggle that initially roiled the Clinton administration - between deficit hawks and deficit spenders - is basically over; today, even the most liberal Democrats are fiscal conservatives."

    If only.

    - rest at www.cato.org/pub_display.php?pub_id=6642
     
  2. carpro

    carpro
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    Current Republicans are bad enough at spending us into oblivion. Democrats are twice as bad.

    The difference that we can really look forward to with democrats in power is massive and repeated tax increases to support their spending habits.
     
  3. Daisy

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    Can you back up that claim?

    The choice seems to be pay now with tax hikes or pay later plus huge interest - neither side has all that much interest in spending less. But the previous adminstration did reduce the size of the federal bureaucracy.

    It might be a bad thing to have the same party controlling the presidency, the senate and the house.
     
  4. rbell

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    Now the $64,000 question...

    Woudja say that if the other party were in control of all 3? :smilewinkgrin:
     
  5. carpro

    carpro
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    Another liberal in favor of increased taxes.

    I've never seen one that wasn't.
     
  6. Daisy

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    Yes, absolutely, it's not a good thing to have power concentrated into too small a group.
     
  7. rbell

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    Consistent. That's fair. I might disagree with your premise, but there's no double standard on your part.
     
  8. El_Guero

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    Sounds good

     

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