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Posts Tagged ‘National Debt

Debt Deal: Shame on you Pennsylvania

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I am stealing this excerpt from Larry Greenley 8/5/2011. Larry has done an excellent job of cutting through all the confusion and summarizing the federal budget problem. See my reference link for the full article which includes a breakdown of votes from across the nation and a video clip from Ron Paul’s floor speech.

Congratulations to Michael Doyle and Patrick Toomey for being the sole voice in opposition to this legislation from each Pennsylvania house. The excerpt follows:

In exchange for congressional authorization for an increase in the debt ceiling of an amount between $2.1 and $2.4 trillion (in a two-step process), congressional leaders promise to cut approximately $2.5 trillion in spending over the next ten years.

So, even though our annual federal deficits have been averaging over $1 trillion per year for a few years now, which would lead us to expect an increase of over $10 trillion in our national debt over the next ten years, the much ballyhooed debt deal will only shave $2.5 trillion off the over $10 trillion expected increase.

The basic problem is that we’re experiencing an increase in the national debt in the area of $2.5 trillion every two years, but the debt deal only provides a reduction of spending of $2.5 trillion over the next ten years.

However, there is an even bigger problem. The unfunded liabilities for Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid are variously estimated at $60-$100 trillion dollars or more. So the official, current national debt figure of $14 trillion dollars is a gross underestimation of our federal debt problem.

Everyone knows that by early 2013 we’ll be back in the same situation as we were before the debt deal of 2011. That is, we’ll be knocking on the debt ceiling again.

Larry Greenley “Who Voted to Perpetuate Trillion Dollar Deficits?”

Pennsylvania House
Aye PA-1 Brady, Robert [D]
Aye PA-2 Fattah, Chaka [D]
Aye PA-3 Kelly, Mike [R]
Aye PA-4 Altmire, Jason [D]
Aye PA-5 Thompson, Glenn [R]
Aye PA-6 Gerlach, Jim [R]
Aye PA-7 Meehan, Patrick [R]
Aye PA-8 Fitzpatrick, Michael [R]
Aye PA-9 Shuster, William [R]
Aye PA-10 Marino, Thomas [R]
Aye PA-11 Barletta, Lou [R]
Aye PA-12 Critz, Mark [D]
Aye PA-13 Schwartz, Allyson [D]
No PA-14 Doyle, Michael [D]
Aye PA-15 Dent, Charles [R]
Aye PA-16 Pitts, Joseph [R]
Aye PA-17 Holden, Tim [D]
Aye PA-18 Murphy, Tim [R]
Aye PA-19 Platts, Todd [R]
Pennsylvania Senate
Yea PA Casey, Robert [D]     
Nay PA Toomey, Patrick [R]

Reference: http://www.jbs.org/news/who-voted-to-perpetuate-trillion-dollar-deficits
Reference: Report: U.S. Spends 60 Percent Of Debt-Ceiling Increase In One Day

Written by federalexpression

August 6, 2011 at 2:00 am

It’s A Bird, It’s A Plane… No, It’s “Super Congress”

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This debt deal has given birth to a new “Super Congress”. A so-called committee of 12 that will formulate a plan to handle the deficit crises. This is a sham. The Congress has literally crumbled the Constitution into a huge paper ball and tossed it in the waste paper basket. 12 members are going to represent 435 Congressional districts and there will be no debate, no amendment and no filibusters allowed when the committee comes forward with its “recommendation”.

If, by some miracle, the Congress as a whole votes down the recommendation; then the OMB will slash the deficit on its own. Now, remember there is more than one way to reduce the deficit. If I were a betting man I would wager that tax increases rather than spending cuts will be the avenue of choice. Let’s talk about the constitutional problems with this legislation.

United States Constitution Article I Section 1
All legislative powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.

#1. The constitution tells us that all legislative power rests in a Congress. This “Super Congress” establishes the President (an executive branch official) as a legislator with veto power. This is different then the normal veto power of the president. It is different because under this committee he exercises the veto in the course of formulating the legislation. He becomes a co-author. As such, he is not exercising a simple assent or denial, he is engineering bills. Does he sit in on the discussions, I’m not really sure. I do know , however, that any proposal that would be rejected by the whole congress would result in the OMB cuts to go into affect. The OMB is an executive office.

United States Constitution Article I Section 7
All bills for raising revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives; but the Senate may propose or concur with amendments as on other bills.

#2. According to the Constitution, all revenue generating bills are to originate in the house and it explicitly states that the Senate may offer amendments. These revenue generating bills will be originating in something akin to a joint-committee of the two houses, but it is really a revolutionary body never before assembled.

United States Constitution Article 4 Section 4
The United States shall guarantee to every state in this union, a republican form of government…

#3. And finally, I submit that this arrangement, because it blurs the separation of powers between the Legislative and Executive branches of government violates the very definition or a Republic.

Making matters worse, this deal never even pretended to address our real economic crises, THE DEBT. Listen to what they talk about. They talk about reducing rising budget deficits. The never speak of eliminating the budget deficit and they never talk about paying off the National Debt.

It’s as if Americans do not even understand terms. A deficit is when you spend more money than you take in. The debt is the total of all deficits plus the interest owed. Reducing the deficit means you are going to continue to have budget deficits and you are going to continue to grow the national debt. Whether the committee proposal is approved or denied, the debt ceiling will be raised. An approval will grant an increase of 1.5 Trillion and a rejection would result in an increase of 1.2 Trillion. Now, if you are going to raise the debt by 1.2 to 1.5 Trillion what is the point of the budget cuts?

Are we as a people too dumb to remain free? This appears to be the beginning of an oligarchical dictatorship. I would expect increased taxes, increased spending, increased debt and a decrease in benefits and services. The bankers will love this arrangement because it will increase the interest payments on an ever-increasing national debt.

Written by federalexpression

August 4, 2011 at 3:38 am

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