Have nothing to do with the [evil] things that people do, things that belong to the darkness. Instead, bring them out to the light... [For] when all things are brought out into the light, then their true nature is clearly revealed...

-Ephesians 5:11-13

Tag Archives: Federal Government

Senator Tom Coburn’s “Holier-than-Thou” release of his 2013 “Wastebook”

In Tuesday’s press release Senator Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) announced the publication of his annual “Wastebook” which highlights Congress’ “most egregious spending” while at the same time distancing himself from the big spenders and earmarkers in Congress who provided fodder for his book:

While politicians in Washington spent much of 2013 complaining about sequestration’s impact on domestic programs and our national defense, we still managed to provide benefits to the Fort Hood shooter, study romance novels, help the State Department buy Facebook fans and even help NASA study Congress…

What’s lacking is the common sense and courage in Washington to make those choices – and passage of fiscally-responsible bills – possible.

Coburn then provided some teasers out of the 100 examples in his Wastebook:

The Popular Romance Project has received nearly $1 million from the National Endowment of the Humanities (NEH) since 2010 to “explore the fascinating, often contradictory origins and influences of popular romance as told in novels, films, comics, advice books, songs and internet fan fiction…

The military has destroyed more than 170 million pounds worth of useable vehicles and other military equipment [in Afghanistan] … rather than sell it or ship it back home…

In January, 2013, Congress passed a bill to provide $60.4 billion for [victims of] Hurricane Sandy. However, instead of rushing aid to the people who need it most, state-level officials … spent [$65 million of it] on tourism-related TV ads…

Since NASA is no longer conducting space flights, they have plenty of time and money to fund … the “Green Ninja” in which a man dressed in a Green Ninja costume teaches children about global warming.

While promoting his book recently on CBS News, Coburn tried to distance himself from any responsibility for such “egregious spending” by asking rhetorically: “Where was the adult in the room when this was going on?” Interviewer Nancy Cordes then asked if any of his previous editions of Wastebook had made any impact or had reduced or eliminated any of the more outrageous examples of waste:

Cordes: Have you ever gotten any traction in Congress, where members say “We’re actually going to get rid of this?”

Coburn: No. They don’t pay attention to it. It’s hard work to get rid of junk, it’s hard work to do oversight, it’s hard word to hold agencies accountable. And so what they would rather do is look good at home, get re-elected, and continue to spend money, and that’s Republican and Democrat alike.

What Cordes failed to ask at that moment would have been the perfect follow-on question:

How does your effort, then, and your voting record, separate you from them? Doesn’t this Wastebook of yours cost a lot of taxpayer money? Isn’t this part of your attempt to look good at home while providing cover for your own votes for some of these projects? Isn’t this part of your attempt to continue to get reelected?

Unfortunately there is no record of Cordes asking, or of Coburn’s response. But in July 2007 when Coburn criticized pork-barrel spending by Nebraska Senator Ben Nelson that would benefit Nelson’s son’s employer with millions of dollars of taxpayer money, newspapers in both Nebraska and Oklahoma noted that Coburn himself failed to criticize similar earmarks that he voted for that benefited his own state of Oklahoma.

In May, 2012 Coburn voted for H.R. 2072, to reauthorize the Export-Import Bank with increased lending limits backed by taxpayer monies from $100 billion to $140 billion. According to analysts assessing his vote, the federal government has no constitutional authority to risk taxpayers’ money “to provide loans the private sector considers too risky to provide.” Those analysts added:

Indeed, U.S. government-backed export financing is a form of corporate welfare, and if the Ex-Im Bank goes bust (as happened to Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae), the taxpayers will get stuck holding the bag.

Perhaps Coburn can be forgiven for not knowing that such wasteful spending is part of a plan to reduce America’s influence in the world, first clearly laid out when Coburn was just 10 years old, in 1958 in Indianapolis, Indiana. At a meeting in December, candy maker Robert Welch spoke for three days to some friends about the direction the country was headed, claiming it was part of a plan to “surrender American sovereignty, piece-by-piece and step-by-step, to various international organizations…”. Part one of that plan was:

Greatly expanded government spending for every conceivable means of getting rid of ever larger sums of American money as wastefully as possible.

Other parts included:

Higher and then much higher taxes…

An increasingly unbalanced budget despite the higher taxes…

Greatly increased socialistic controls over every operation of our economy and every activity of our daily lives. This is to be accompanied naturally and automatically by a correspondingly huge increase in the size of our bureaucracy and in both the cost and reach of our domestic government.

Coburn’s report illustrates the success of that plan to which he himself is contributing. The man has feet of clay. He not only is the author of Wastebook but a contributor to it as well.

 

 

 

 

 

Monumental Hubris in Claim of Taxpayer Victory in GM Bailout

 

This article first appeared at The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Wednesday, December 11th, 2013:

In Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew’s fawning, obsequious, genuflecting announcement that the president had singlehandedly saved western civilization from a cataclysmic economic disaster, he said that by taking a loss, taxpayers actually scored a victory:

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US Treasury sells the rest of its GM shares at a loss, claims taxpayer victory

Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew announced on Monday afternoon that his department had sold the remaining shares of GM that it acquired following the forced bankruptcy of the auto giant in 2009, and made the $10.5 billion loss sound like it was a victory:

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Contractor behind the Obamacare website is not the only one with problems

Nearly one-quarter of CGI Group’s $1.3 billion in revenues last year came from the United States government which included $90 million to build the Obamacare website, Healthcare.gov. Unfortunately, overruns have taken that number up to $112 million, and could exceed

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Former Treasury Secretary Geithner to head up private equity firm Warburg Pincus

Former Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner announced his plans to join the Wall Street private equity firm Warburg Pincus in March 2014 where he will serve as president and managing director.

Geithner is the proto-typical insider with establishment ties that follow almost exactly

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Supreme Court to hear Pennsylvania Poisoning Case with Huge Implications

On Tuesday the Supreme Court will hear arguments from Paul Clement, the lead attorney in Bond v. United States, that the federal government overstepped its constitutional authority in prosecuting a Pennsylvania housewife for attempting to poison a former friend.

If the court rules in favor of the government, implications for federal enforcement by police power of other treaties, those ratified as well as those pending (like the United Nations’ Arms Trade Treaty) are

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Progressivism’s Proof: American Indian Poverty

Any man who thinks he can be happy and prosperous by letting the government take care of him, better take a close look at the American Indian.    – Henry Ford

Using their portable forge, members of Lewis and Clark’s Corps of Discovery fabricated various iron implements and traded them to the Mandan and Hidatsa Indian tribes in what is now North Dakota, in exchange for corn, beans, squash and tobacco to sustain them during the winter of 1804-5. Several months and a thousand miles later the Corps was surprised to see that one of their implements, an axe,

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Fitch Threatens Downgrade; Boehner to Surrender

This article first appeared at The New American online on Wednesday, October 16th, 2013:

 

Despite mounting evidence that the government will have more than enough money to pay its essential bills and that the real national debt is $70 trillion, not $17 trillion, and despite pressure from Tea Partiers and constitutionalists to resist, House Speaker John Boehner is likely to bring the Senate bill to a vote in the House where, if House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi is right, it will

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US oil output is up 25 percent from just one year ago

If the increase in US oil output continues to increase by 25% every year, as it did from September 2012 to September 2013, total US output would double every three years. It’s a simple case of mathematics, compound interest, and the Rule of 72.

The main thing working to keep that from happening is

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List of Indignities Foisted on Americans by Obama during Shutdown continues to Grow

What was missing from nearly all the media coverage of the “immigration rally” on Tuesday on the National Mall was any mention of how the rally came to be held there in the first place. The National Mall is closed for the duration of the so-called government shutdown and yet

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Belgian Government Shutdown a Lesson for the US?

This article was first published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Friday, October 4th, 2013:

With all the noise and rhetoric over the awful, catastrophic, world-ending US government shutdown, little has been said about the Clinton shutdown and nothing at all about the 589 days Belgium went without a national government in 2010 and 2011.

There’s no chance that the present US “shutdown” will threaten that record.

Belgium is a quirky little country with just 11 million people. Its government, when it has one, is a combination of

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Glitches, as Anticipated, Plague First Day of Obamacare

California insurance broker Jason Andrew planned to help a couple of his clients sign up for Obamacare on Tuesday, the first day of the federal health care roll out, but couldn’t, for two reasons: first, he hadn’t yet been certified by the state to do so, and secondly, he couldn’t get accurate quotes from the state exchange’s computer. Andrew just laughed it off:

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US to Become the World’s Primary Energy Producer in Four Years

In its review of the latest report on world energy supplies from the international energy consulting firm IHS, Inc., writers at Yahoo.com were quick to point out several of the impacts likely to be felt as the United States becomes the number one producer of energy in the world by 2017. Fracking is the prime driver of the US’ resurgence and is bending, changing, questioning and even replacing many of the

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Deficit down, national debt up, more taxes needed say two “nonpartisan” groups

Two government reports issued in the last few days show that despite higher tax revenues, thanks to the tax increases signed into law by the president earlier this year, deficits are still sky-high and the national debt continues its inexorable climb into the stratosphere.

Although the deficit for the first eleven months of the 2013 fiscal year was down slightly compared to last year at this time, real progress towards a balanced budget remains elusive. Through August the federal government spent

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Improved RFID technology in Smart Guns Threatens the Second Amendment

The development of RFID (radio frequency identification) chips has advanced to the point where gun makers will shortly be offering their “smart guns” for sale in the US, according to Anthony Gucciardi, who has been watching the movement with increasing concern for years.

The advancement will allow the manufacturer and the federal government to

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Another Obamacare Delay Admitted by the White House

On Monday the New York Times quoted an unnamed White House official that another piece of the labyrinthine healthcare law is going to have to be delayed until 2015, which will wind up costing vast numbers of citizens with severe illnesses potentially thousands, perhaps even hundreds of thousands, of dollars. This flies in the face of the promise that President Obama made back in September 2009 that Obamacare

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University of California Study: The National Debt is really $70 Trillion

Professor James Hamilton, economics professor at the University of California, San Diego, just published his best estimate of the federal government’s “off-balance-sheet” liabilities and concludes that the real national debt, popularly estimated to be $16.9 trillion, is in fact more than four times larger: $70.086 trillion. This is because of decisions to

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Blurring the Line between Police and Military

The Mayor of Berwyn Heights, Maryland, Cheye Calvo, was taking a shower in his home late Tuesday afternoon, July 29th, 2008 in preparation for a meeting he had that night. He heard a loud explosion at the front door of his home followed by the screaming of his mother-in-law who

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Surveillance State to be Extended Nationally if NYPD Commissioner Raymond Kelly Replaces Napolitano at DHS

This article first appeared at The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Wednesday, July 17th, 2013:

 

Although President Obama says he has many strong candidates to replace Janet Napolitano as secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, it’s clear that NYPD Commissioner Raymond Kelly has the inside track. If Obama is determined to complete building the surveillance state nationally, Kelly is just the man

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States’ Nullification Efforts: All Bark and no Bite?

This article first was published by the McAlvany Intelligence Advisor:

 

In a dreadfully slanted and intellectually dishonest offering from Associated Press writer David Lieb on Friday, efforts by the several states to nullify unconstitutional federal laws are derided as irrelevant and the matter already settled.

So why did he write it? Perhaps that’s the underlying message: the feds are getting nervous.

He calls the possibility that a state might actually arrest a federal agent for enforcing a federal law that a state thinks is unconstitutional “farfetched” but “conceivable.” He refers to the bill about to become law in Missouri as

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Many of the articles on Light from the Right first appeared on either The New American or the McAlvany Intelligence Advisor.