Tuesday, November 01, 2005

"Compassionate Conservatves" Target Budget Cuts That Would Hurt The Poor

Remember, they like to call themselves the party of "compassionate conservatives."

Just as the House Agriculture Committee last week "was drafting budget-cutting legislation that could knock 295,000 people off food stamps, the Agriculture Department released findings that 529,000 more Americans went hungry last year than in 2003.

But in spite of the juxtaposition, rest assured, the party of "compassionate conservatives" plan to move ahead with the cuts. Why? Because after $2 trillion of deficits spawned by five bloated Bush Administration budgets, they've decided an argument could be made that the GOP is no longer the party of fiscal conservatives.

And don't forget, mid-term elections are just around the corner.
The House conservatives figure they can offer the false pretense that they're fiscally sound, and all it takes is screwing over a subset of the population that is unlikely to vote Republican under any circumstances.

To reverse the bloat, the House Republicans want to cut $50 billion from the budget over 10 years. Later this week. the House Budget Committee is expected to take up eight different bills that will rewrite welfare laws, curb federal support of state child-support enforcement, reverse a court-mandated expansion of foster-care programs, and make significant changes to Medicaid, such as allowing states to add co-payments and premiums for families just above the poverty line. Of that amount, the food stamp cuts total approximately $844 million.

It's a drop in the budget when compared to the over-the-top deficits created since 2001 by our Republican-led leadership. But hey, these congressmen face re-election! Who cares if a few poor people get hurt? There are commercials to cut! Talking points to create! Majorities to preserve!

Some Republicans won't go on board. House Republican moderates have grown increasingly queasy about what one of their leaders, Michael Castle (R-DE), calls an unbalanced package, too weighted toward cutting programs for the poor.

But that reality doesn't stop the conservative leadership from offering empty spin to cover-up their pro-corporate budget plans. Consider this misguided statement from House Speaker Dennis Hastert (R-IL): “Democrats have failed to find ways to keep our children from bearing the burden of a skyrocketing deficit.” The hypocrisy is mind-boggling.

***

Of course, while conservatives look to cut welfare and other programs benefiting the poor, they won't consider touching welfare and other programs that benefit some extremely profitable corporations.

For example, conservatives aren't looking to trim any of the $14.5 billion of tax breaks, loan guarantees and other subsidies over 10 years they approved in July for the electricity, coal, nuclear, natural gas and oil industries.

Or how about farm subsidies? That has cost $69 billion over the past 10 years, with the majority going to a small number of large farm operators, concentrated in a handful of districts represented by (surprise, surprise) "a Who's Who on the agriculture committees in Congress."

"The whole system is tilted to a handful of big farm operations, and everybody else comes up short," Ken Cook, president of Environmental Working Group, told the Washington Post.

Those that call themselves "compassionate conservatives" would never think to touch their fat-cat supporters. It's much easier to spin the "economic benefits" of helping huge corporations fatten their bottom lines.

The neediest among us? These "compassionate conservatives" simply don't care.

13 Comments:

Blogger Brad said...

God, I miss Clinton. Remember back in the day when all we had to worry about was whether or not our president was getting blown? Those were good days. Of course, he wasn't perfect, but we had peace, we had prosperity, relatively speaking.

Damn, those were good days.

2:04 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If the MSM would do its job and expose these issues David brings to the forefront, the people would not stand for this "compassion conservative" and his anti-human policies. Just listen to some of these Republicans and conservatives attempt to extrapolate (bullshit) on why we are better off now we were under Clinton. Massively higher numbers of people believed the country was headed in the right direction than the dismal only 26% or so now under Bush, which reminds me this is World Can't Wait national anti-Bush demonstration day. Step out of your school or workplace and take a stand.

8:29 AM  
Anonymous paul said...

This post accentuates precisely the deplorable priorities of our current elected officials. When reckless spending dictates cutbacks in federal spending, it is sobering that it is the voiceless and most vulnerable who are first targeted.

11:55 AM  
Anonymous shoelace414 said...

They're cutting 50bil, and cutting taxes for 70 bil so.. even when they cut spending they dig us deeper in the hole.

3:00 PM  
Anonymous oneold1-4u said...

they have cut care for senior/ disabled
And one care provider must now fall back on only SS, which makes them eligible for subsidized housing, total medical including medicare payments, child care, and of course food stamps. Each senior/disabled that has to go into assisted living will cost 5 times as much. What a bunch of fiscal idiots!
They have the power to destroy every financial structure for millions of people and the nation, in far less than 3 more years!
A national sales tax is already being tossed around and everyone among the ultra rich already buy everything, from shoes and socks to yachts and planes, in another nation!
Time is of the essence, DO IT NOW! It's over due!

3:00 PM  
Anonymous Doug Morrison said...

Man, you guys are really getting ridiculous. More than half of those food stamps and welfare check are going to illegal immigrants who don't deserve a hand out and don't even belong here. That's something the left never wants you to know. Besides, I'm tired of working for people who won't work for themselves. Let them rot for all I care.

3:04 PM  
Blogger Michael said...

Doug, since you are here making specious statements perhaps you would also provide links to some evidence?

If you read "FS 225 United States Citizenship and Alien Status" of FOOD STAMP CERTIFICATION ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENT I think you'll find that to qualify for food stamps one must show proof of citizenship or lawful alien status.

Since your blather doesn't appear to be based on actual facts I wonder if you are just parroting rightwing xenophobia. Come on Doug, did Rush tell you to say all that?

4:01 PM  
Anonymous Michael McCLure said...

It's people like you, American Dissident, who are tearing this great nation apart. Any info on the welfare recipient criteria? I didn't think so. Keep making excuses and pointing figures. The right wing of the American Eagle is unfurling and there isn't a damn thing you can do about it. No more flying in circles with only a Left wing.

5:01 PM  
Blogger Michael said...

Sorry, you'll have to be more specific Doug McClure, do you mean before Bush spent 5 years doing nothing to reform immigration or after he recently proposed to allow "millions of temporary guest workers that are now in the country illegally to apply for a three-year work visa (with a one-time three-year extension) before returning to their native country." says San Francisco Chronicle

American eagle? How about unfurling some facts and quit trolling for chrissakes.

5:18 PM  
Anonymous Michael McClure said...

Sorry I don't read the San FranSICKO Chronicle. Since when did the left become so passionate about immigration, what a joke.

5:24 PM  
Anonymous Angelina's Evil Twin said...

AD, why are you bothering. Michael McClure is not interested in FACTS. He's too busy SPEWING HATRED.

He's been taught by Michael Savage the FALSEHOOD that liberals hate America. Uninterested in learning about the world around him, he finds it much easier to MINDLESSLY REPEAT Savage-isms. Name calling? SURE! Unprovocated hatred? SURE! Bigotry and xenophobia? SURE!

Remember, for people like Michael McClure, a CATCH PHRASE or a SPIN LINE is more important than FACTS or STATISTICS.

"What a joke" indeed!!!

5:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If Bushie immigration policies fail to razzle the population, maybe this would work.provoke The Bush Administration is trying to take away to claim the interest paid on our mortgage as a tax deduction. Obviously, so he has more money to fight his goddamned war.
If the Republican crooks manage to somehow connive this measure into law, it will be because of the ignorance of the people and the media's avoidance of the story.

8:52 AM  
Anonymous panichol said...

Compassionate conservatism-an empty shell

These two words were conscripted by the repugs to make the less-informed part of the populace believe that they were making changes. It is as meaningless as Rush Limbladder claiming that the Repugs don't respresent the elite. The conservatives have only one main goal and that is to keep the have-nots in their place.

3:56 PM  

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