Wednesday, February 11, 2009

After the Senate, a Stimulus Bill Linkapalooza + Humorous Chaser

Well, the pork-tastic stimulus bill, with a big assist from the President, made it through the feckless Senate, and the blogging Anchoress is on fire in response! Check out her link-filled post on that and related subjects.

As for me, my head hurts. There was the bailout boondoggle and TARP. Then TARP 2 the Sequel: Revenge of the Tax-Sucking Wastrel Zombies. Then more bailout-mania. Now there's this stimulus bill. Plus Tim Geithner's muddled "plan" for doing something or other. I think I better redouble my efforts to stash pennies in my mattress and stockpile rice in my super-secret underground concrete bunker. Do I have to start buying gold and ammo or what? I'm kidding about the bunker! Uh, sort of. Going on! (And why is the font all wonky on this post?)

I'm going to say this too: this stimulus package is a big huge mess and a bad gamble. Yes, yes, the economy needs a shot in the arm. But this bill is packed full of stuff that has nothing to do with a timely, targeted, temporary approach (and that has more to do with loopy socialistic dreams of social revamp on a vast scale under an ever-increasing government). I really do think that Obama made a serious error in outsourcing the writing of this bill to the Pelosi-Reid school of House clowns. (Hey, Jack Cafferty and I agree on something!) The result is a bad bill, and no matter how much political commentators/pundits/partisans want to pile blame on the balking Congressional Republicans for refusing to support this Hydra-like monstrosity, the real problem is the fact that it is a bad bill, a fact that sensible Blue Dog Democrats know.

Meanwhile, plenty of disgusted and furious taxpaying American voters can't
believe what we're hearing and seeing. Oh, and we didn't need another reminder of why this Congress has the lowest approval rating in Congressional history. (Is it possible to have negative numbers, I wonder?)

Anyway, here's a bit of humor to go with it, via Dr. Boli: the satirical headline, "Defying Sluggish Economy, Existential Despair Up 285%"! Hey, fuel the despair with a nice pessimistic poster from Despair.Com, eh? Meanwhile, I'm working on a new satire.

UPDATE: Camille Paglia has a neat bit of wordsmithing about all this:

Money by the barrelful, by the truckload. Mountains of money, heaped like gassy pyramids in the national dump. Scrounging packs of politicos, snapping, snarling and sending green bills flying sky-high as they root through the tangled mass with ragged claws. The stale hot air filled with cries of rage, the gnashing of teeth and dark prophecies of doom.

Yes, this grotesque scene, like a claustrophobic circle in Dante's "Inferno," was what the U.S. government has looked like for the past two weeks as it fights on over Barack Obama's stimulus package -- a mammoth, chaotic grab bag of treasures, toys and gimcracks. Could popular opinion of our feckless Congress sink any lower? You betcha!

. . . President Obama was ill-served by his advisors (shall we thump that checkered piñata, Rahm Emanuel?), who evidently did not help him to produce a strong, focused, coherent bill that he could have explained and defended to the nation before it was set upon by partisan wolves. To defer to the House of Representatives and let the bill be thrown together by cacophonous mob rule made the president seem passive and behind the curve.

. . . Surely common sense would dictate that when Congress is doling out fat dollops of taxpayers' money, due time should be delegated for sober consideration and debate. The administration's coercive rush toward instant action, accompanied by apocalyptic pronouncements of imminent catastrophe, has put its own credibility on the line.

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