Oh I Wish I Was a Grand Old Party Oinker

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Today's reminder that the national GOP has devolved into a pork-pride parade comes from occasional Reason contributor Radley Balko, writing over at FoxNews.com:

The [$286 billion highway] bill calls for nearly half a billion dollars to build two bridges in Alaska. One will connect the Alaskan mainland with a tiny island called Gravina (population: 50). It will cost U.S. taxpayers $230 million. In fact, when it comes to pork barrel politics, Alaska is the new West Virginia. That's because Alaska Rep.Don Young chairs the transportation committee. The transportation bill is named after Young's wife. The second bridge the bill appropriates money for—another $230 million—will be called "Don Young Way." […]

You'd think that a Republican like Young would at least be embarrassed about all of this. He isn't. He's shameless. Upon hearing that only one other lawmaker in the entire Congress had outdone him in securing pork barrel projects, Young told the New York Times, "I'd like to be a little oinker, myself. If he's the chief porker, I'm upset."

Lovely. Then there's the shenanigans of "House Government Reform Committee" chairman Tom Davis.

Davis later threatened sanctions against [Major League Baseball] if it allowed an ownership group, in which billionaire leftist George Soros held a minority stake, to purchase the Washington Nationals—a stunning, possibly illegal threat to impose legal sanctions against a private organization for doing business with someone Davis opposes politically. Just last month, Davis stuck a provision into a funding bill that would prohibit development of a housing complex in his home district. The congressman told Washington Post columnist Marc Fisher he feared "urban kind of people" moving into his district. This is exactly the kind of federal government edict over local affairs Republicans are supposed to oppose.

Local officials told Fisher that Davis has said privately he fears too much development in his district will attract too many Democrats, which could one day imperil his reelection.

NEXT: Who's Looking out for You??

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  1. On a related note, if anyone is interested, Cabela’s is having a sale on bulk ammunition. Click here.

  2. It’s really crucial to know that Ted Stevens is Young’s ostensible nemesis. More Balko goodness on this theme here. (Lot’s of good quotes.)

    Anon

  3. Corruption? In BASEBALL?

  4. Nitpick: Soros is not really a ‘leftist’. He is a vigorous opponent of communism, preferring what he would call an open society.

  5. theCoach — “leftist” and “vigorous opponent of communism” are not at all mutually exclusive.

  6. Soros is not really a ‘leftist’. He is a vigorous opponent of communism

    There are a lot of leftists who opposed and still oppose communism. Soros may or may not be a leftist, but that’s no real litmus test.

  7. The Republicans control all three branches of government. They’re now truly frightened of losing the power they’ve gained. And they’ve sold their souls to keep it.

    I’ve heard a friend of mine, who is nearly as far right as they come (except on religious matters), refer to “dunderhead Republicans” more than once.

  8. “Urban kind of people”? Hmm – now, who could he be referring to….

  9. Only two reasons to vote Republican:

    1) Your income is such that it is in your rational self-interest.

    2) You believe Bush was selected by Jesus to chastise the wicked.

    Number 3, gridlock, isn’t applicable until the Democrats figure out how to win an election or two again.

  10. I’m not sure I’m down with numero uno there Brian.

    …How big does my income have to get for huge amounts of pork to be in my rational self-interest?

    …Is there anyone over there advocating deep cuts in marginal tax rates?

  11. With Republicans like this, who needs Democrats?
    It’s sad to see where things are going lately.

  12. “Urban kind of people”? Hmm – now, who could he be referring to….

    Pedestrians.

    It’s funny because it’s true!

  13. 1. Your income as a highway builder is such that it is in your rational self-interest.

    That clear things up, Ken?

  14. I’d say somebody’s worse.

    Maybe it’s even the truth.

    But I’m too depressed.

  15. I’d say someone’s worse.

    Maybe it’s even the truth.

    But I’m too depressed.

  16. The Republican National Committee just called me asking for donations. I told the girl I’d be happy to donate money to the Republicans just as soon as they started to restrict government rather than expand it. She just laughed and hung up.

  17. I used to think only a Republican could end the drug war, along the lines of “Only Nixon could go to China”…

    could it be that only the Dems could reign in the Federal bureaucracy?

  18. People are people and will always steal from the public trough every chance they get no matter which party they come from. There is just something too enticing about having all that money to throw around and the power that comes with it. That is why the only way to control this kind of nonsense is not to put one party or the other in power, but to make sure that they get as little of your money as possible to spend. I.E. cut the hell out of taxes any and every way possible. Yes, they still can and do borrow in huge amounts, but that is limited somewhat by the financial markets. There is no limit to the amount of money they would tax given the opportunity. Ineveitably even Congress responds to the financial markets. In the 1990s they actually did control spending to some degree even before the Republicans took over Congress and gridlock set in. Even the Democrats had to face the reality of an unsustainable deficit. All these figures show is that no one can really be trusted with your money and the less of it they get, the better off everyone is. The I will just divide government approach does not work very often. Yes, it worked to some degree in the 1990s, but people forget the spending orgy Ronald Reagan allowed the Democratic Congress to go on in the 1990s. The only gaurenteed way to prevent them from wasting your money is to not let them have it.

  19. Republican pigs,

    Build us a bridge to nowhere.

    Please, won’t you build it?

    —————————

    Davis changes rules.

    He fears the city people,

    Colored like lefties.

  20. Reagan allowed the spending orgies in the 1980s, not 1990s

  21. One [bridge] will connect the Alaskan mainland with a tiny island called Gravina (population: 50). It will cost U.S. taxpayers $230 million.

    $4.6 million per person… that may be the best return on tax dollars in history. Add to that, the check all Alaskans get from Uncle Sam and they’re not doing so bad up in the frozen tundra.

  22. could it be that only the Dems could reign in the Federal bureaucracy?

    I’ll believe it when I see Dems at least trying to cut projects and/or spending. I’ll be willing to entertain it when their pundits actually start talking about how this would be a good idea, with suggestions as to what to cut and how much – without then explaining how that money will go to another federal program.

  23. K.,

    You’re not being fair. That bridge should last at least 50 years.

    So that’s only $92,000 per person.

    Per year.

  24. I can’t wait until the rep from Hawaii gets the transportation chair!

  25. “could it be that only the Dems could reign in the Federal bureaucracy?”

    (cue tape of Al Gore smashing ashtray on the Letterman show).

    “spending orgy Ronald Reagan allowed the Democratic Congress to go on”

    You’re not being truthful.

    http://www.huppi.com/kangaroo/L-demodeficit.htm

  26. Eric, the fact remains that the only time in recent history we ever made a dent in the deficit was with a Democrat in the White House. Why don’t you just stop the charade and stick the (R) after your name?

  27. Just last month, Davis stuck a provision into a funding bill that would prohibit development of a housing complex in his home district.

    I recall reading about his plans back in April. Here is the original WaPo article on Davis’ move. Nothing like blocking the sale of private property…

    Lawmaker Steps In on Va. Growth

  28. I once came across a study that showed that when the branches of government were the same party (R-R or D-D), spending ballooned.

    Spending was shown to be relatively restrained during periods when the parties were mixed (R-D or D-R).

    I wish I had the stats/info at my fingertips, but alas…

  29. Oh, and here was his rationale…

    “I’m sorry, but unfortunately, the Congress of the United States has jurisdiction over Metro. The Board of Supervisors doesn’t.”

  30. And, I mispoke… the land belonged to Metro (not a private developer). Metro was trying to sell it to a private developer.

  31. I once came across a study that showed that when the branches of government were the same party (R-R or D-D), spending ballooned.

    I had quickly put this together the other day, not that it says much. Bottom line represents control of the WH. Top line represents control of Congress (green = divided).

    Budget 1947-2004

  32. M1EK:

    The deficit reduction during the Clinton years was due to tax rate increases and an increase in tax revenue due to high rates of economic growth. Clinton did quite the opposite of cutting govt. spending–and would have spent a lot more if he had had the votes in Congress to do so.

    Neither party gives a crap about reducing the size of the federal colossus.

  33. M1EK,

    I love how you accuse everyone who disagrees with you or points out an inconvienent fact of being a liar. You have to be the most santamonous bastard on the face of the earth.

    Federal spending more than doubled, growing from almost $591 billion in 1980 to $1.25 trillion in 1990. In constant inflation-adjusted dollars, this was an increase of 35.8 percent.
    Contrary to popular myth, while inflation-adjusted defense spending increased by 50 percent between 1980 and 1989, it was curtailed when the Cold War ended and fell by 15 percent between 1989 and 1993. However, means-tested entitlements, which do not include Social Security or Medicare, rose by over 102 percent between 1980 and 1993, and they have continued climbing ever since

    It was an orgy of spending and I don’t mean on defense.

  34. That is Sanctimonious Bastard.

  35. Ummm,

    I hate to break it to you, M1EK, but the last time a dent was made in the Federal debt it was a republican in the whitehouse (at least according to the treasury dept website. Specifically, it was in the 1957 fiscal year under Eisenhower.

    Your mistaken belief that the debt was reduced during th eClinton presidency is due to the Enronesque accounting scam perpetrated by govt. officials wherein they counted money loaned by various federally administered trustfunds, with the Social Security Administration being the largest, as real income.

    Of course, which of the two dominant political parties is nominally in power is largely irrelevant from my perspective, since they both want to confiscate approximately equal portions of my earnings. It’s like debating which mafia crime family is “better” from the protection-paying store owner’s point of view.

  36. And when they hand a million grand out
    I’ll be standing with my hand out
    Yes, sir, I’ll get mine!

    [apologies to Tom Paxton]

  37. Why don’t you just stop the charade and stick the (R) after your name?
    Oh fine, M1EK:
    Eric and this John sticks the (R) after their names, you and Joe go stick (D) after your names, the generic libertarians (l), the hard LP folks (L), the anarchists go with (A), the Randroids with (RA) me and Stevo will put (LUH) for Lazy Unprincipled Heckler; did I miss anybody? Heck, go make up your own.

  38. Don Young is problematic for Alaska in several ways, the lack of fiscal restraint being one of them. Even though this state ‘benefits’ from the pork, the long term consequences of expanding government are far worse than any potential benefit from the probjects. As such, I am against Don and Ted’s pork. I have voted against them every time that I can.

    Having said that, there is a little bit more to the bridge to Gravina island than first appears. Gravina island is an island across the channel from Ketchikan, one of the larger cities in the state. Because of the mountainous geography around Ketchikan, the airport is located on the island. Thus, the bridge is not so much for 50 people to use but rather to facilitate transport between the airport and the city.

    Also, the cost of the bridge results from the necessary design. The bridge has to withstand some of the strongest tidal currents in the world and it has to be built to a height sufficient to let cruise ships pass underneath as they come into Ketchikan.

    having said that, while I certainly would not mind a bridge for the times I have to travel to Ketchikan, I am opposed to it being paid for with tax dollars. I figure at the cost of the bridge, it’s cheaper to take the ferry that currently shuttles people between the airport and the mainland.

  39. Tom Davis: Al Franken’s
    Former comedy partner?
    Both should stick to jokes!

  40. John,

    If the shoe fits, wear it. You’re the one who claimed:

    “spending orgy Ronald Reagan allowed the Democratic Congress to go on”

    which was clearly refuted by the link I gave. Heck, I’m feeling charitable. Here’s another one.

    http://www.cedarcomm.com/~stevelm1/usdebt.htm

    [Reagan] “never submitted a balanced budget himself. Many blame the Democratic Congress for the ?big spending? during his administration. The facts are that Reagan was able to push his tax cuts through Congress, but he never pushed through any reduced spending programs.”

    and

    http://www.stcynic.com/blog/archives/2004/11/libertarians_an.php

    “President Reagan talked eloquently about the need for smaller government, but he submitted larger budgets than those tax and spend liberals in Congress sent back to him,”

  41. tarran,

    Claiming to despise both parties equally while failing to give Clinton credit for being better than Bush on budgetary issues is disingenuous. Please stop. Whether his “paying down the debt” was truly such or simply avoiding drawing down the SS surplus as much as Bush I, Bush II, and Reagan did is immaterial to the issue – he was BETTER than they were.

  42. here an idea… we have a second amendment for a reason and perhaps that reason is to turn these self proclaimed “oinkers” and “porkers” and assorted pigs into bacon.
    the war of the constitution is not far off…only when the only thing left of the constitution is a charred piece of paper and the shitstains our legislators have left will people be willing to take a stand.

  43. M1EK,

    My post was not intended to be disengnous, but rather to correct an embarassing factual error that you have repeatedly propounded as evidence of Clinton’s goodness. Given that you like to accuse people who make comments that are factually inaccurate of being liars, and my assumption that you look down upon liars, I thought you would appreciate the friendly heads-up.

    If it makes you feel better, I will freely declare that Bush is a worse president than Bill Clinton.

    Of course, that’s not really saying much; I think Stalin was worse than Hitler too, but it does not mean I have anything good to say about Hitler. Nor is it disingenous for me to say I didn’t like hitler without saying, “But Stalin was *worse*!”

  44. Offered for free to any future opponent of Mr. Young:

    My Congressman has a first name
    It’s D-O-N-L-D
    My Congressman has a last name
    It’s Y-O-U-N-G
    Oh, he loves to pass a spending bill
    But when he stands up in the well
    To call for smaller government
    It’s B-A-L-O-N-E-Y

  45. Ketchikan, population 7922, was a 5-hour stop on an Alaskan cruise I was on a few years ago. My most lasting memory of the place is the way in which the town had made a cottage industry out of giving otherwise-pointless jaywalking fines to unsuspecting tourists. It looks like the town’s penchant for fleecing outsiders remains as strong as ever.

  46. With Republicans like this, who needs Democrats?

    Oddly enough, this is exactly the Republican plan to maintain dominance. And exactly what the Democrats are afraid of.

    Claiming to despise both parties equally while failing to give Clinton credit for being better than Bush on budgetary issues is disingenuous.

    There is more than one way to compare budgetary prowess.

    Personally, I think one of the greatest services any President can do for us, federal budget-wise, is cut taxes, so I give Bush the edge on that front. Running up debt is bad, sure, but debt is just a symptom of the disease of spending.

    I believe it is true that non-defense spending has gone up faster under Bush than Clinton, so Clinton gets a big thumbs-up there.

    Because Congress exerts so much control over spending, it might be interesting to compare the budget requests of each President. I seem to remember that Congress regularly sends Bush more than he asked for, and that Clinton usually got less, but it judging the Presidents themselves it would be interesting to filter out what Congress does and see what the President wanted done.

    Of course, Bush still gets a big ding for never vetoing anything.

    Comparing relative current-accounts deficits strikes me as less important, unless you include all revenue (including Social Security) and all spending.

  47. I wish I had the stats/info at my fingertips, but alas…

    This article may have the information you’re looking for.

  48. I recall that reagan didn’t so much increase spending as cut taxes…which in turn lead to the economic boom of the ninties…which lead to easier to manage budgets….but if the argument is that the current republicans are spending to much then i say i agree with you…the good thing about it is that the republicans can be shamed for doing it…and shamed into changing thier ways…where as the democrats…well good luck with all that.

  49. I seem to remember that Congress regularly sends Bush more than he asked for, and that Clinton usually got less

    You just made the case for electing John Kerry. Of course, it’s a pretty weak case, I admit.

    My fear is that the Republicans are right on their strategy: A socially conservative populism (“We’ll stand up to those Godless elites!”) coupled with lots of spending will make it impossible for the Dems to break through.

    I read on Wonkette today that McCain endorsed Intelligent Design. Now, I know that most people here aren’t big fans of his, but I still thought he was better than that. Not a lot better, but still slightly better.

    I was disappointed.

  50. Having said that, there is a little bit more to the bridge to Gravina island than first appears. Gravina island is an island across the channel from Ketchikan, one of the larger cities in the state. Because of the mountainous geography around Ketchikan, the airport is located on the island. Thus, the bridge is not so much for 50 people to use but rather to facilitate transport between the airport and the city.

    Excellent clarification… although, like you, I would rather see it funded without tax dollars… perhaps, a private toll. Or, if it must be taxes, it seems there are local options (local airport tax, etc.).

    On another note, I recently saw a Republican proposal to, finally, revert all federal fuel taxes back to the states. I’m not a fan of the federal gas tax, but better that the money be kept in-state rather than go through some national redistributive scheme.

  51. joshua said:
    the good thing about it is that the republicans can be shamed for doing it…and shamed into changing thier ways

    From Radly Balko, quoted in the post at the top of the page:
    You’d think that a Republican like Young would at least be embarrassed about all of this. He isn’t. He’s shameless. Upon hearing that only one other lawmaker in the entire Congress had outdone him in securing pork barrel projects, Young told the New York Times, “I’d like to be a little oinker, myself. If he’s the chief porker, I’m upset.”

    Joshua, where’s your evidence that Republicans can be shamed? All I see is evidence to the contrary.

  52. “Joshua, where’s your evidence that Republicans can be shamed? All I see is evidence to the contrary.”

    ok ill admit it: I am crossing my fingers with my eyes shut….but i really don’t think voting in democrats will change it. I will be voting for more libertarians this next election…..but still you have not shown how democrats are being shamed into tighter budgets…to be really contrary you would have to have democrats shamed and republicans shameless. 🙂

    By the way when compared as a percentage of GDP the republicans recent budget isn’t that far off from the budgets of the 90’s…and most of the growth can be acounted for in growth of social security and medicare….and we know how much democrats love thier pet FDR founded middle class entitlements. I do have more faith in republicans fixing these atrosisties then I do the democrats.

  53. I hate all haikus.

    They should be banned from this blog.

    They are tedious.

  54. M1EK,

    Your link cited nothing but more unsubstantiated opinion. I gave you the facts which are that non-defense domestic spending went through the roof in the 1980s. It was Congress that passed those budgets. Indeed, every year Reagan would propose spending cuts, be excoriated in the press for kicking grandma and the poor out on the streets, Congress would declare his budget dead on arrival and pass the budget they wanted, at least with regard to non-defense spending, and he would sign it. The one time Reagan did veto the budget in 1986 I believe he got slammed for shutting the government down. I think he should have caved. That said, it was Congress that passed those budgets. The point being that neither side can restrain itself when it comes to spending. Again, you seem to have a hardtime accepting facts that cut against your accepted myth.

  55. Eric, the fact remains that the only time in recent history we ever made a dent in the deficit was with a Democrat in the White House.

    Actually, the “balanced budget” was mostly a charade, using excess Social Security funds to make up the differences. Gore started calling for a “lockbox” in the 2000 election to try to prevent the Republicans from using such slight-of-hand.

    Now, at the time, tax revenues did manage to rise faster than spending, due to partisan conflict between Clinton and that Republican Congress. But that’s not any effort to cut government back, it’s just not managing to grow it as fast as the Democrats would have liked.

    Why don’t you just stop the charade and stick the (R) after your name?

    Because the absolute best I can say about the Republicans is that they give good lip service, now and then, to shrinking government? I didn’t argue against the topic of the post – that the Republicans don’t give a damn about fiscal responsibility. I just pointed out that this doesn’t prove that the Democrats will spontaneously start giving a damn.

    Hint: the mere fact I was skeptical of the Democrats getting into the shrinking-government gig does not make me a Republican. It just makes me a realist. Forgive me if this is a strain for you to grasp.

  56. Eric the .5b,

    The Republicans for a while really did try to reduce government. Remember the government shut down in the December 1995? Remember the plans to eliminate the Department of Energy and Education? They were crucified by Bill Clinton and a compliant media that gave us such balanced headlines as “How the Gingrinch Stole Christmas” on the cover of Newsweek. The Republicans just let their survival instinct overtake them and let those dreams go. After that experience and gettign killed in the 1996 and 1998 elections came “compasionate conservatism” which is basically embracing big government so the liberals can’t say you are putting grandma out on the street. Yet, despite this, there are people on this post who somehow believe voting Democratic is going to shrink government. Granted the Republicans have been a complete failure at curbing the growth, but at least they are a failure in that they at some point tried to do it. The Democrats on the other hand, can’t really be judged a failure because reducing government has never been their goal.

  57. Joe,

    Somehow I am not reassured by the judgement of a man who invaded Iran with 8 helicopters. Makes me kind of wonder if perhaps closing Groton isn’t the right thing to do.

  58. Fuck yourself, Darkly.

    Haikus fucking rule, asswipe.

    Your mom’s face is so…

    😉

  59. You know, I’d settle for a party that read and understood amendments 1-8 as well as a microeconomics textbook. Not perfect by any means, but better than the status quo for damn sure.

    Sadly, those items seem to be on neither party’s reading list.

  60. Oh, and check out the quotes from the small government conservatives in Georgia.

    Oh, and Herman, just for the record, that’s Jimmy Carter (D-America).

  61. From Joe’s link:
    “Throughout Carter’s career, he’s paid a lot of political price for this approach,” Black said. “I can’t imagine he’s very popular in south Georgia this morning. What’s unusual is he seems more concerned about the south Connecticut economy than the south Georgia economy.”

    Um, maybe Carter doesn’t particularly care about the economic ramifications as much as he cares about the military ramifications? Unlike every Congresscritter facing a base closure. Now, it’s possible Carter’s assessment is all wet, but at least he’s put his priorities in the right order: military effectiveness first, everything else last.

  62. When a former submarine officer and Georgia politician recommends against shifting some submarine functions to a base in Georgia, I figure he’s worth hearing out.

    He may very well be wrong, but his advice is at least worthy of consideration because:
    1) He knows more about submarines than I do
    2) The fact that his recommendation runs contrary to at least one of his personal ties counts as a point in his favor. He may very well have some other conflict of interest that I don’t know about, but at least the most obvious one is ruled out.

  63. Great quote regarding bushes spending from an email to radley balko (theagitator.com).

    “Reagan left the veto pen, Clinton may have stolen it – but some where in that God-Damn building is a pen and set of balls – I would like someone to find them both.”

  64. No doubt about it bush is a one man spending disaster. But apparently some of you folks missed the caterwauling (mostly from democrats) that arose over bush’s proposal to slow the rate of growth for spending on some programs and to cut farm subsidies. And you also must have missed all of the complaining (mostly from democrats) that his budget busting medicare prescription drug plan was not big enough. And you must have missed how hard he had to turn the screws in the house and senate to get enough republicans to vote in favor of the prescription drug plan.

    A party split between the executive / congressional branch may slow spending simply out of spite on the part of both parties. However, the idea that the democrats would show any restraint with regard to spending is laughable.

    However, at some point the republican party has to realize that constantly repeating “the democrats would be worse”, even if true, is a damn poor way to run a party.

  65. However, at some point the republican party has to realize that constantly repeating “the democrats would be worse”, even if true, is a damn poor way to run a party.

    Exactly.

    I wonder if this administration’s disastrous spending, coupled with their general arrogance, might spark another 3rd party backlash as in 1992.

    No, I have no illusions that the LP will prove itself capable of drawing 19% of the popular vote like Perot did. Nor do I think that Ross Perot could do that today if dug up from the political graveyard and zapped with current like the Frankenstein monster.

    But when the majority party becomes fat, sloppy, and arrogant, and the opposition party is clueless and incoherent, there’s a vacuum waiting to be filled. Since an honest critique of this administration’s economic policies would turn off key Democratic blocs, I doubt this vacuum will be filled by somebody who wins a Democratic primary.

    Every now and then American Presidential politics gets shaken up by a third party candidate who collects at least a few percent by capitalizing on disenchantment. I don’t know if it will happen in 2008, but I have a hunch that it will happen eventually if the GOP doesn’t shape up and the Dems don’t find a way to start winning.

  66. BTW, if a fiscally conservative spoiler does appear in 2008 and demonstrate a good shot at 5% or more, as long as he isn’t a complete authoritarian on social issues the LP should shut up, take notes, and stay out of his way.

    I wasn’t paying attention to the LP in 1992. Does anybody know what their stance on Perot was? I know he was far from libertarian, and he was bad on trade, but he had a few appealing ideas and he was able to pull 19%. That’s the sort of person that a third party should study respectfully rather than bash.

  67. Fuck yourself, Darkly./ Haikus fucking rule, asswipe. /Your mom’s face is so… 😉

    joe:

    Your momma so fat
    I must roll over three times
    To roll off of her

    ;P

  68. I wonder if this administration’s disastrous spending, coupled with their general arrogance, might spark another 3rd party backlash as in 1992.

    Unfortunately, that would require that more than a handful of Americans actually give a shit about reducing the size of the govt. I see no evidence for that.

  69. ChrisO-

    In 1992 Perot ran on a platform that emphasized deficit reduction.

  70. “gave you the facts which are that non-defense domestic spending went through the roof in the 1980s. It was Congress that passed those budgets. Indeed, every year Reagan would propose spending cuts, be excoriated in the press for kicking grandma and the poor out on the streets,”

    Your ‘facts’ are not true. I repeat again for the record:

    “Second, and most importantly, because for 7 of the 8 years Reagan was in office, the budget he submitted to Congress was actually larger than the budget Congress sent back to him for his signature.”

    http://www.intheagora.com/archives/2005/08/republicans_and.html

    That goes for the other one or two “libeRtaRians” who can’t say anything good about the Democrats who brought up the same (incorrect) point.

  71. “However, at some point the republican party has to realize that constantly repeating “the democrats would be worse”, even if true, is a damn poor way to run a party.”

    Does the fact ever register in you peoples’ minds that when you keep repeating “The Democrats Would Be Worse” or “Kerry Would Have Been Worse” or “Gore Would Have Been Worse” no matter WHAT the subject; no matter WHAT the supporting arguments; that it’s difficult to take you seriously as Not Republicans?

  72. Herman,

    “you and Joe go stick (D) after your names”

    misses the point. I don’t defend Democrats no matter what; but a hell of a lot of supposed libertarians here sure seem to have a problem admitting to obvious cases where Republicans really ARE the worse of the two.

    Want me to list my set of issues on which the Dems are worse? Just ask nicely. I never voted for Clinton, by the way; combination of drug hypocrisy and wanting to send a social security message via Perot.

  73. Just another example of why we must get rid of ALL the current pols Dem and Rep and elect people who will first enact term limits.

    The jig is up on spending. They have gone to the trough to many times for to many pie in the sky ideas to continue to finance them with increasingly larger budgets. Thankfully I think it has maxed out as the pols now are starting to realize that adding more and more taxes will not help them maintain their job come election time.

    They have spent to much on to many things trying to buy votes and damn it has worked so well so far.. But the time is running out. All these entitlement programs and the number of people with their hands out exceeds the number having their pockets picked its game over.

    Wake the hell up America.

  74. M1EK-
    I don’t defend Democrats no matter what
    Well, I couldn’t tell from the many previous posts of yours I’ve read over the last few weeks.

    a lot of supposed libertarians here sure seem to have a problem admitting to obvious cases where Republicans really ARE the worse of the two.
    The passion with which you argue that makes you sound like a James Carville impersonator. I personally don’t bother keep close track at which party is being worse on a given issue.

    But since,
    Want me to list my set of issues on which the Dems are worse? Just ask nicely. I never voted for Clinton, by the way; combination of drug hypocrisy and wanting to send a social security message via Perot.
    I’ll take you at your word and stop myself from calling you M1EK McCurry.

  75. M1EK,

    The budgets Congress gave him were smaller overall because he wanted to spend so much more on defense than they did, not because Congress has any desire to cut non-defense domestic spending. You are the master of the misleading fact and knowing just enough about a subject to dellude yourself and be dangerous.

  76. John,

    Since you’ve been lying up a storm about Iraq, I’ll take your input and deliver it straight to the round file.

    Herman,

    Nice way to hit and run. Good work. Ever think that the reason I have to defend Democrats so much here is precisely BECAUSE most of the rest of y’all are standing up for the GOP?

  77. Nice way to hit and run.
    Yes, that’s the theme at this website here.

    Ever think that the reason I have to defend Democrats so much here is precisely BECAUSE most of the rest of y’all are standing up for the GOP?
    What, joe isn’t enough for you? You also seem to have a very generous definition of GOP support.

    I haven’t thought up any material yet for R.C. Dean and this “GOP” John.

  78. Just as an FYI – on an earlier post about this monstrosity a couple of weeks ago, I mentioned that I emailed my rep Ron Paul as to why he abstained from voting on this. I heard back from his chief of staff: “While the Representative was not present during the final vote on HR 3 he did in fact vote against the bill when it came before the House earlier in the year.”

    Also, the only people to vote against this bill were Reps (by may count, there were a few names I did not have time to check party affiliation on in the House), few though they were. Both Arizona senators voted against it, so I guess you could say that Arizona is the polar opposite of Alaska in more ways than one.

  79. “You also seem to have a very generous definition of GOP support.”

    Anybody unwilling to say that Clinton was, on fiscal matters, far better for this country than Dubya; might as well be GOP John.

  80. Going back to sage’s posting about bulk ammunition, does anyone have opinions about 45 GAP vs ACP? Noticed Springfield offer an XD for 45 GAP.

  81. Anybody unwilling to say that Clinton was, on fiscal matters, far better for this country than Dubya
    M1EK- Aw hell, I’d agree with you on that. And I hate Clinton.

  82. Anybody unwilling to say that Clinton was, on fiscal matters, far better for this country than Dubya…

    Shit, just about every president since Millard Fillmore has been better for this country than Dubya on fiscal matters.

  83. By the way, I really don’t know how Millard Fillmore was on fiscal matters, there just seems to be a consensus that he actually might have been “the worst president…ever”. Besides he had a funny name.

  84. “Ever think that the reason I have to defend Democrats so much here is precisely BECAUSE most of the rest of y’all are standing up for the GOP?”

    Oh, get the fuck over yourself, M1EK. There are numerous dem partisans here, and the largest group (larger than dem or rep partisans) is the “pox on both their houses” crowd. And your own ideological blinders are as glaringly obvious as anyone else’s on the board. But since you seem to know everything, all of your positions are so obviously correct to the dispassionate observer, and anyone who disagrees with you a liar who will never admit the truth, why the hell are you wasting your time around here with all the conservative ideologues?

  85. John:

    The Republicans for a while really did try to reduce government. Remember the government shut down in the December 1995?

    That was a farce, and they knuckled under quickly, despite that being the program they ran on. I can’t see it as anything more than posturing.

    M1EK:

    Does the fact ever register in you peoples’ minds that when you keep repeating “The Democrats Would Be Worse” or “Kerry Would Have Been Worse” or “Gore Would Have Been Worse” no matter WHAT the subject; no matter WHAT the supporting arguments; that it’s difficult to take you seriously as Not Republicans?

    If you’re talking to me, just try to remember that “The Republicans are bad!” doesn’t prove “The Democrats are better!” except to Dems…

    Anybody unwilling to say that Clinton was, on fiscal matters, far better for this country than Dubya; might as well be GOP

    Clinton by himself vs. Bush by himself? Uncomparable, and anyone who tries is probably just a partisan twit – the circumstances are too different. We don’t know what Clinton would have done with two terms of abject Congressional worship, or what Bush would have done with a hostile Democratic Congress.

    But, Clinton with the Republican Congress he had vs. Bush with the Republican Congress he has? Far superior.

  86. So Alaska gets a $230,000,000 bridge to serve 7,922 + 50 people. Yet my New York City has been trying to scrounge up a few billion for the past eight decades in order to complete a desperately-needed second east side subway line. By my calculations, if federal bucks were to ever be spread out evenly again, rather than be granted much more liberally to the south and west as they have in recent decades, I figure NYC is entitled to $230,807,827,396 this year. Feel free to round that down to the nearest hundred billion, Mr. Bush.

  87. Steveo Darkly,

    Your momma’s teeth are
    So nasty that it looks like
    She’s got dice in there.

  88. Issac – James Buchanan usually gets the nod for worst President ever. Some congressmen called him Nancy behind his back. He gets his abmismalness for the Missouri Compromise.

  89. saw-whet

    No kidding. I don’t recall how I got the impression that there was something of a consensus over Millard Fillmore.

    I don’t know about Buchanan with respect to the Missouri compromise but I do know he presided over the meltdown leading up to the Civil War, so I guess he’s as good a candidate as any.

  90. joe:

    Your momma so fat,
    She tripped on Second Street and
    Fell down on Tenth Street.

    Your momma so fat
    When she put on some Guess? jeans
    The answer popped out.

  91. Issac – Oops, the Compromise was a wee bit earlier. Well, he was a pretty sucky President anyway.

  92. Isaac – And I spelled your name wrong twice. Sorry ’bout that.

  93. joe and Stevo D
    I laugh at haikus and spit
    Who will clean it up?

  94. saw-whet

    I’d forgotten Franklin Pierce who served between Fillmore and Buchanan. All in all the 1850s sounds like a pretty sucky decade presidency-wise.

    Pierce was a pro-slavery northern democrat, who not only accepted slavery in the south and respected states rights but would have been quite content for slavery to extend outside the south. He was also an alcoholic, but in that he was probably not unique as president.

  95. Eric,

    Clinton started out with a Democrat House of Reps. One of the things that’s interesting about his start is that he basically hung the party out to dry on a number of issues, and they lost the House (some say because of it).

    It’s fashionable to call him a liberal, but that’s not how he campaigned; he dealt with the Republicans .

  96. Hey chump,

    A better userid I’ve never seen. What, exactly, are my partisan blinders? I never voted for Clinton. “A pox on both their houses” when one house is clearly worse than the other one RIGHT NOW is NOT being nonpartisan. That’s my mission here – to remind you that if you’re not honest in calling the worse party WORSE, you’re basically supporting them.

  97. sorry, joe, you’re bound to lose this one. Unless Stevo becomes our “liberal democrat/city planner/punching bag,” you’re not allowed to become “the funny one.”

  98. M1EK

    “I don’t defend Democrats no matter what;”

    Umm this would seem to contradict the points you made after I submitted evidence that democrats are not the protectors of civil rights that they claim to be.

    “Want me to list my set of issues on which the Dems are worse?”

    What? Like property rights, taxes, civil rights (had to put that one in there) social security, medicare, poverty, health care, labor…

    you know I can can come up with a list of what I don’t like about repubicans….but i am not making claims about other peoples libertarian credentials as you are….something like “john should just put an “R” after his name” if i do recall.

  99. M1EK,

    “I never voted for Clinton.” Is that really your evidence that you don’t have ideological blinders? That’s so cute. It’s safe to say that many of the targets of your hissyfits never voted for Bush, but I guess that doesn’t count in their cases…? And either you weren’t around here last prez election or you’ve repressed the memory, but a lot of people here actually voted for Kerry.

    The most painfully obvious example of your blinders on this thread is your unwillingness to acknowledge in any meaningful way the contexts of Clinton’s and W’s presidencies – specifically the rep congresses they dealt with – when discussing their fiscal merits. Other clear indications include:
    -The fact that you think everyone who disagrees with you is an outright liar or in some way intellectually dishonest (many people have made this point, including people who agree with the position you’re arguing; but don’t worry, I’m sure they’re all Republican operatives).
    -Moving the goalposts when someone points out a previous assertion of yours was wrong, like you did when tarran when he pointed out that Clinton didn’t lower the debt. (Hey look, you called him disingenuous there too! Classy!)
    -Ignoring claims made against your thesis that you haven’t addressed and are presumably unable to, like you did with John – “Since you’ve been lying up a storm about Iraq, I’ll take your input and deliver it straight to the round file.” Wow, and you called him a liar too! You maybe should have considered the “I’m rubber, you’re glue” argument, but I’m sure you’ll work that in somewhere.
    -Making grossly inaccurate characterizations that portray everyone who doesn’t completely agree with you as against you, as you did in your 9:04 post. (Including saying “…it’s difficult to take you seriously…” – no irony there; none at all.)

    Of course, I don’t expect for a second that any of this, or anyone else’s comments, will have the slightest effect on you. The thing about blinders is that the people wearing them can’t really see. Blind – blinders; see how that works?

    PS – It was very entertaining that you described what you’re doing here as your “mission.” No ideological connotations there…

    PPS – You seem a bit slow on the uptake with my user ID, so I’ve modified it to clarify for you.

  100. One more point: people who feel the need to repeatedly use ALL CAPS to emphasize their VERY IMPORTANT POINTS end up looking kind of like FREAKING NUTCASES. Use this information wisely.

    And before you tell me how I’m a rep ideologue too, let me point out that I never voted for either Bush, or for that matter for any republican for any state or national office. I even voted for John Fucking Kerry, pathetically useless opposition candidate though he was, because I thought he would have been better than W. Clinton would have been too. And probably my pet finch. Or a flaming bag of shit.

    OK, I’m done.

  101. Hey URA Chump,

    Bite me.

    Hope this helps,
    M1EK

  102. “Hope this helps”

    About as much as anything you post.

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