Fed's Stimulus allows California to pretend-again
The Stimulus is rapidly approaching the US Senate, after passing the House with no Republican support, and California legislators are fairly salivating over the chance to stave off fiscal collapse, if only for a few months.
The "Stimulus" itself, being a Democrat Christmas Wish List of pork and pork by-products, seems to do little to create real permanent jobs, but instead gives lawmakers "headroom" that allows senators to thin out their in-boxes even if not doing much to create jobs.
Defenders of the package said that once experts determined it would take $800 billion to start to pull the country out of recession and emphasized the urgency, details took on less importance.
"If the house is burning, you're not going to worry about which hose you grab, so long as you get water on the fire," said Rep. David Obey, D-Wis., one of the chief authors of the House package as chairman of its appropriations committee.
Dumping money out of the back of a C-130 would be more effective, and might actually reach the people it's supposed to help.
But with even with the $825 billion proposal being debated in the House would deliver about $11 billion to California through mid-2010, which would shrink the general fund deficit from $40 billion to $29 billion. Real cuts are needed in California to make the difference, and though Assembly Democrats unrolled a 150 foot scroll of supposed "budget cuts", how much of that is even real cuts as opposed to simple reductions in increase?
California needs to be making real changes to the budget;
The Democratic Leadership unveiled a scroll that displayed the cuts made to the budget since the 2003-2004 fiscal year. The scroll listed $15 billion in budget cuts since 2003. According to the Governor's office figures, the budget expenditures have actually increased by $37 billion or 35% over the same 6 year period claimed by Assembly Democrats. The Democratic attempts to brand themselves as the party willing to break from their ideology and make the sacrifices needed to save the state is a paper thin veil of traditional liberal tax-and-spend Democratic practice.
The Democratic leadership continues to make the case that they have met the GOP leadership more than halfway on the budget problems. That might not be sufficient given the long term practice of making the Republicans approve a budget that has spent more than the annual revenues projected for more than 8 year despite their fiscally conservative ideology. This lack of self control regarding the Democrat spending habits cannot and should not be indulged by implementing increased taxes on business or citizens.
Or passing along their excesses to the Feds?
Where before California was looking at a real fiscal emergency, now the Democrats in legislature seem to be content to push the problem off until "next year", which by the way, comes July 1st of this year.
Even with massive tax increases proposed by state Democrats…and here's yet another interesting twist, after proposing the California constitutional end-run on December 18 to illegally raise taxes, they now blame Schwarzenegger for wanting to raise taxes, and according to Democrat Phil Angelides, the governor's 2006 re-election opponent, "…undermine Obama's economic agenda in the Golden State and put California at risk of a deeper, prolonged recession."
Anyway, even with the massive tax increases proposed by Democrats and seemingly agreed to and amplified by Schwarzenegger, the gap remains $29 billion and likely to grow as legislators feel free to push their agenda at both state and federal levels.
Some things I hear from Ron Paul I can't abide by, sorry. However what he recently said with regards to California's budget I can't ignore. He obviously has followers for a reason.
Since video embed still doesn't work for me, view here.
This from The Policy Report summed it up for me;
California has not passed a budget where the state spent less than it collected in revenue for more than 8 years. This spending problem has led to the current cash "crisis" that Democratic lawmakers refuse to address realistically. Bailouts will not fix the core problem of California's extravagant spending plans. Spending must be cut.
The infusion of federal money will not only complicate the process for those in the state legislature wanting to argue for fiscal restraint, but it just pushes the date back down the road to the crash that's inevitable.