By Adam Bitely -
The establishment in Washington, D.C. rose up from the murky swamp to renew their call for expanded, out-of-control government spending via the New York Times editorial page on Christmas. In their typical fashion, they call for more “stimulus” to fix state budgets that refuse to cut even the slightest amount of spending.
Too many people will lose government services if spending is cut, the New York Times and the D.C. establishment argue. How quickly they forget that this was the exact formula that Obama tried and failed miserably in 2009. Not to mention that it was government’s out of control spending that created the whole mess in the first place.
At some point in the late 90’s, politicians on all levels began to operate under an assumption that the prosperity would never end. Spending shot through the ceiling, and the services offered from the government expanded along with it. But now that the bills are coming due and the money has been spent, the very people that caused the mess are begging to be the ones to fix it.
This cannot be allowed.
They argue that all they need to do is have Washington, D.C. send ever more “stimulus” down to the states in order to balance the budgets that they didn’t deal with last year due to congressional handouts. Don’t cut spending, they say, because so many poor people would be affected.
But what will happen the following year when the budgets are again running a deficit? The federal government cannot simply send fresh “stimulus” to cover state government spending malfeasance year after year.
To do what the establishment wants, and what the New York Times suggests, is to kick the can down the street yet again. With so many states on the verge of bankruptcy, simply giving them yet another year to figure out how to get their spending habits under control will not solve anything. State legislatures have already had a considerable amount of time to figure this out, and seem to have sat on their hands instead, waiting on monetary gifts from Washington. They should making immediate cuts, and prove that they have kicked the spending habit that voters have been trying to cure.
Here we are heading in to 2011, the world is still in economic chaos, and the establishment still believes that state and local government bailouts under the guise of “stimulus” spending is the way out of our problems. It has been attempted, and it has failed.
California has received over $27 billion in “stimulus” monies, and still it cannot get its financial house in order. Illinois currently faces a multi-billion dollar budget shortfall and has received over $10 billion in “stimulus”, yet there are still folks that think “stimulus” is the only way for the State to recover. Time and again, the “stimulus” experiment is tested, and it is a proven failure.
However, the dirty little secret that the left won’t tell you is that the public employee unions, who collect dues from all those bureaucrats who remain employed, are the direct beneficiaries of state and local bailouts. You won’t hear about the $87 million that public employee union AFSCME spent on contributions to Democrats in the last election as those same Democrats now work to bail out state and local governments to prevent layoffs of AFSCME members.
AFSCME and other public employee unions went “all in” for the Democrats in 2010, and they expect the membership dues that they receive to be politically protected. Believe it or not, AFSCME, was not only the largest union political contributor in the 2010 election, but the largest overall contributor.
And now this special interest is demanding to be paid.
The “stimulus” arguments in favor of allowing state and local governments to avoid necessary budget cuts are nothing more than political cover for the age-old corrupt practice of sending taxpayer money to your friends.
Let’s be clear, government spending must be cut on all levels. The spending is unsustainable, and the bills are coming due. Adding more to the national debt just to balance state budgets for a year is the last thing we need if we ever want to climb out of the economic pit that government overspending has put us in to.
It is time for Congress to do what is right for our nation, and stand up to the public employee unions who only care about their own treasuries. With an almost $14 trillion national debt, failure is not an option.
Adam Bitely is the Editor-in-Chief of NetRightDaily.com.