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  • Budget Boondoggle Award
    Posted in HBC Publications on December 11, 2008 | Preview rr

    More than 2,700 farmers with incomes exceeding $2.5 million a year have received farm subsidy payments from the Federal Government, according to a recent report by the Government Accountability Office [GAO]. It is another example of wasteful government spending – a kind of reverse-Robin-Hood transfer payment – earning the latest Budget Boondoggle Award. Among the highlights of the GAO report: In 2006, the U.S. Department of Agriculture [USDA] handed over $49 million taxpayer dollars to 2,702 far... Read more

  • Federal Loans for America Auto Manufacturers
    Posted in HBC Publications on December 10, 2008 | Preview rr

    The automotive industry legislation (H.R. 7321) being considered by the House this week provides bridge loans to the “big three” U.S. auto makers – General Motors, Ford, and Chrysler – to help them avoid bankruptcy. The measure limits compensation and other perquisites for executives of companies receiving loans, and imposes government oversight of the companies’ restructuring activities. The bill also contains provisions unrelated to the auto industry rescue plan. Below is an analysis of the la... Read more

  • Budget Boondoggle Award
    Posted in HBC Publications on November 20, 2008 | Preview rr

    Having spent billions of Federal dollars to “modernize” elections, State and local officials are finding much of that spending is actually creating the very problems it was intended to solve. Mechanical troubles, fraud, and voter confusion again this year plagued the taxpayer-funded electronic voting machines installed to replace the traditional manual systems. Now many States are planning to scrap the new equipment – which the Federal Government strongly encouraged them to buy – wasting those b... Read more

  • A $300-Billion 'Stimulus' Bill, With Questionable Economic Benefit
    Posted in HBC Publications on October 22, 2008 | Preview rr

    There should be no illusion about the $300-billion “stimulus” plan now being promoted by the Democratic Majority. It will not address the core problems of the current financial crisis and economic weakness. It may even worsen them by adding hundreds of billions of dollars to Federal deficits and debt, which are already reaching historic highs. The Democratic proposal has several fundamental problems: It adds $300 billion to the deficit and the debt, taking both to record levels. It does little, ... Read more

  • The Problem for Main Street
    Posted in HBC Publications on October 3, 2008 | Preview rr

    INTRODUCTION To many, the major economic proposal facing Congress this week seems to have little connection with the realities of their day-to-day lives. In part, that is because the severe disruptions are occurring in a portion of the financial system that is invisible to most Americans: the credit markets. In evaluating the health of U.S. financial markets, observers often look to the Dow Jones Industrial Average or the Standard and Poor’s 500. Most Americans have a fairly good idea about the ... Read more

  • Second 'Stimulus'
    Posted in HBC Publications on September 26, 2008 | Preview rr

    The fiscal “stimulus” bill coming to the House floor today (H.R. 7110) will bust the Majority’s budget with provisions that are not timely, or targeted, or temporary, as Democrats previously claimed to advocate for such legislation. It is mainly an infrastructure bill – most of which will take years to spend out – providing a vehicle for a range of other new spending. The bill totals $61 billion through 2018, and will be considered under a closed rule that waives most points of order. As with th... Read more

  • The Consolidated Security, Disaster Assistance, and Continuing Appropriations Act, 2009
    Posted in HBC Publications on September 24, 2008 | Preview rr

    The huge end-of-session omnibus spending bill scheduled for consideration today was filed after 11 p.m. Tuesday, and will come to the House floor under a closed rule. As a result, Members will have had less than 24 hours to review a measure comprising 357 pages (and an additional 752 pages in the Joint Explanatory Statement), with more than $1 trillion in new spending; and Members will have no opportunity to offer amendments. Thus, the Democratic Majority – having deliberately abandoned the resp... Read more

  • The Potential Budget Impact of Government Intervention
    Posted in HBC Publications on September 24, 2008 | Preview rr

    INTRODUCTION The Bush administration’s latest proposal to shore up U.S. financial markets has led to confusion about the exact budget impact of such an action. Some have called it a “$700-billion bailout,” because the Treasury has requested authority to purchase up to that amount in mortgage-backed securities, a key component of the market turmoil. Others have suggested the government could make money off this authority, because the Treasury subsequently would sell, for a profit, the assets it h... Read more

  • The Majority's Energy Bill
    Posted in HBC Publications on September 16, 2008 | Preview rr

    Stung by criticism of their energy policy negligence, House Democrats have conjured a fig leaf measure ostensibly expanding oil drilling in the Outer Continental Shelf [OCS]. But the cynical bill getting rushed to the floor is designed to fail, assuring the Majority’s long-promised “Energy Independence Day” will not arrive. The legislation continues limiting production of America’s abundant domestic fuel resources, and charts a path that may leave American consumers worse off. It also follows th... Read more

  • Failures of the Democrats' First Budget
    Posted in HBC Publications on September 9, 2008 | Preview rr

    Today’s analysis by the Congressional Budget Office [CBO] is more than a summary of the Federal Government’s current fiscal condition. It is a report card on the first budget produced by a Democratically controlled Congress – and it shows a failing grade. After 3 straight years of significant reductions, the deficit under the fiscal year 2008 budget will more than double this year, to $407 billion, according to CBO’s annual mid-year report, The Budget and Economic Outlook: An Update. Spending an... Read more