Wednesday, February 18, 2009

(Buzz)Flash - a-ah - he'll save everyone of us

Update I below.
Bump & Update II by The Sailor below.

I've been a fan of BuzzFlash for years. Editor Mark Karlin scours news sources worldwide, linking to divergent sources, exposing right-wing hypocrisy and failed policy. He's even linked to us a few times.

Today Mark has a wonderful editorial that is a must-read:
I have a modest proposal: if a U.S. Senator votes against the "Main Street Job Creation Act" (BuzzFlash's name for the "stimulus" bill), their state should lose half the funding from the bill. If both U.S. Senators from one state vote against the bill, the state loses its entire allocation from the legislation.

This may sound Draconian, but it might induce the people out of work and with piles of bills to tar and feather the "economic kamikazee" Republican Senators who got America into this mess -- and to run them out of the country.

After all, most of the GOP Neo-Confederate opposition to the "Main Street Job Creation Act" comes from Senators who represent states that already receive more money from the federal government than they pay into the treasury. With the exception of Florida, most of the Old South is still poorer than most of the rest of the nation, and needs massive federal aid to survive economically.

Read it all.

Of course, Huckleberry Graham is the first Senator whose state should lose its funding:

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) has been one of Congress’s most vocal opponents of the economic recovery package. In fact, he and several other Republicans — including John McCain — introduced an alternative bill, which focuses mostly on massive tax breaks for corporations.

Yesterday he went on CNN to explain why he voted against the Senate’s economic recovery package. While many progressives criticized the bill because it slashed vital funding for education and state assistance, Graham is objecting because it has too much state funding:

BLITZER: Doesn’t South Carolina need some help?

GRAHAM: Yes. But there’s only one taxpayer. This is not money we found under a tree in Washington. The money we’re sending back to the states came out of the same wallet that the money going to the states came from. So, yes, South Carolina needs help. I’m all for infrastructure spending. But it’s got to be shovel ready. […]

I’m not for $75 billion slush fund for states that can be spent on anything they want to spend it on including budget problems because we’ve got our own budget problems and you’re rewarding states who have done very little to trim up their own budget.

However, when Blitzer asked him whether South Carolina should “take the money, Graham replied: “I think that, yes, from my point of view, I — you don’t want to be crazy here. I mean, if there’s going to be money on the table that will help my state, but I’ve got a job to do up here, and that is to try to help people and not damn the next generation.” Watch it:

And in a non-related topic, Graham should lose his closet-case status.


Update & correction: It's not just Mark, but his entire fearless, tireless staff who provide all those links. Go support them. Please.

Update II: ThinkProgress notes some of the Republicans who voted against the bill but are trying to take credit for it:
– Sen. Kit Bond (R-MO) slammed President Obama’s recovery and reinvestment plan. “Hold on to your wallets folks because with the passage of this trillion-dollar baby the Democrats will be poised to spend as much as $3 trillion in your tax dollars,” Bond said. “Unfortunately, this bill stimulates the debt, it stimulates the growth of government, but it doesn’t stimulate jobs,” Bond insisted.

However, today Bond is touring Missouri to tout the very stimulus plan he railed against. In a press release, Bond boasted about an amendment he included in the bill to provide more funding for affordable housing — and that will create jobs:
This provision will have a real impact in Missouri, especially for low-income, working families in need of safe and affordable housing. … Bond’s amendment will save more than 700 housing units and create 3,000 new jobs in Missouri.

– Gov. Tim Pawlenty (R-MN), who complained that the “federal government is spending money they don’t have,” told Rachel Maddow he would nevertheless accept funds for Minnesota: “Our view is, if you buy the pizza, it’s OK if you have a slice.”

– Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), who also campaigned ardently against the bill, said he would nevertheless gladly accept its funds for his state. “You don’t want to be crazy here,” he said.

– Rep. John Mica (R-FL) gushed over the bill, which he, too, voted against. “I applaud President Obama’s recognition that high-speed rail should be part of America’s future,” he said in a press release.

– Rep. Don Young (R-AK) boasted that he “won a victory for…Alaska small business owners” in the recovery bill he refused to vote for.

– Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-MO) boasted about the educational benefits of the recovery act

– Rep. Ken Calvert (R-CA) said his office "will do what we can to direct as much money as we can." Neither voted for the bill.

– Rep. Pete Hoekstra (R-MI) joins in, praising the stimulus' "generous" incentives for home buyers on his Twitter feed:

petehoekstra If you know of someone thinking of buying first home, now may be the time.Stimulus incentive is very generous!Up to 8k!Check it out.

– Rep. Leonard Lance (R-NJ) to the growing list. After insisting last Friday that the recovery bill "would have exploded our national debt without providing meaningful job growth," Lance toured construction sites in his district yesterday, touting funds that would come from the stimulus bill. "This is a classic example of a "shovel-ready' project," Lance said after the tour.