In 2009, Democrats raised the bar for fiscal incompetence - never before in the history of the world has so much money been spent with so little to show for it.
It is shameful enough that they stole our grandchildren’s money to go on their fiscal binge; but it is downright embarrassing to see how ineptly they squandered over $2.6 trillion of future American prosperity. Money for nothing, indeed.
The list of blunders begins with the second installment of TARP, bringing to $850 billion the total appropriated for the expressed purpose of purchasing toxic assets from banks. How many of these toxic assets got purchased? Not a single one.
Next we spent over $40 billion for the expressed purpose of keeping GM and Chrysler from going bankrupt. And then both GM and Chrysler went bankrupt.
The $787 billion economic stimulus bill was passed with the expressed purpose of creating 3 million jobs and keep unemployment below 8%. Except that we lost 3 million more jobs, and unemployment is now over 10% and climbing.
Cash 4 Clunkers spent $4 billion for the expressed purpose of convincing people who were going to drive their old cars to buy fuel-efficient American cars instead. People who were going to buy a new car anyway bought Hondas.
And then there was the Mortgage Bailout bill - $75 billion for the expressed purpose of keeping 5 million homeowners from losing their homes. Oops – only 650,000 actually qualified, a small fraction of those were actually refinanced, and more than half of the loans refinanced went delinquent again within 3 months.
The Senate is about to pass an $871 billion health care bill whose original expressed purpose was to provide universal coverage, spending reforms, and a public option. After months of bribing votes out of individual senators, the final bill will do none of those things; instead it cuts care for seniors and raises our taxes by half a trillion dollars.
Not to be outdone by Congress, the Federal Reserve doubled the money supply (yes, doubled it) in the last quarter of 2008 for the expressed purpose of forcing banks to expand credit in 2009. Credit issuance contracted by 15%.
On the international front, Copenhagen’s climate talks broke down (thankfully) with no agreement on global warming. Somehow even that no-deal left us holding the bag to pay poor countries $30 billion for doing……..absolutely nothing. At least the expectations for this deal are realistic.
It would be one thing if Americans were clamoring for all of these spending initiatives. But opinion polls clearly showed each of these measures were overwhelmingly opposed, making them not merely expensive and ineffective, but also unwanted – the Trifecta of legislative absurdity. Tammy’s Democrats passed them all anyway.
That is why the approval rating of Congress is at its lowest point in modern history. As it should be; those guys are really bad at this stuff. We all knew they were reluctant capitalists; but who knew they would also turn out to be such incompetent socialists?
Not that I would endorse government interference in markets, but let’s put their foolishness into perspective. $2.6 trillion could have purchased 2,600 new Westinghouse AP1000 nuclear power plants; enough capacity to generate all the energy we could ever conceivably use for all purposes - for several centuries.
That’s what $2.6 trillion could have bought – perpetual energy independence and zero carbon emissions forever. Instead, we got nothing, unless you count a one-year raise for some union teachers. That is truly pathetic.
We fired the big-government Republicans in 2006 because they didn’t get it – they spent too much money, ran up debt, ignored the Constitution, and were drifting aimlessly in Iraq and Afghanistan. We didn’t think anyone could possibly do worse in any of those four areas, let alone all four. We were wrong.
The Democrats have not just governed badly; they have trivialized the process of representative government. They have spat upon the Constitution they swore an oath to uphold; they have mortgaged our future to indulge the fantasies of their radical base; they have traded our precious sovereignty for the worthless approval of the failing socialist states in Europe. Thank God we have China to tell them to pound sand.
Liberals will look at this list of 2009’s spectacular failures with pride; they consider passing any bill with a catchy title to be a great accomplishment. They are itching to spend even more of our money and shove even more of their government down our throat; we can no longer say we didn’t see it coming.
In 2009 they have made their ambitions clear; in 2010 it will be our turn to make ours equally clear. Vote for Liberty. Vote Libertarian. Vote for Tim, Not Tammy.
Tim Nerenz is the Libertarian Party Candidate for U.S. House of Representatives from Wisconsin's 2nd District. To support Dr. Tim's campaign, please visit the campaign website at www.timnerenz.com