Tag Archives: Obama budget

Obama’s “BRAIN” Initiative

human brain_lightbulb

human brain_lightbulb Just this week, President Obama announced a major scientific initiative that would lead us into the next great frontier: The “BRAIN” Initiative (Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies). This initiative, the details of which are scarce and not yet fleshed out according to Francis S. Collins, Director of the National Institute of Health, has a price tag of $100m. It’s being sold not just as an advancement in the fields of science and medicine, but one that will, you guessed it, stimulate the economy and create jobs.

One can only guess the true motivation behind the BRAIN initiative; in fact, heads of two leading neurological research organizations have called into question the goals and intentions underlying the President’s proposal.

Dr. Susan Fitzpatrick of the James S. McDonnell Foundation, a leading funding source for neuroscientific research, characterized her reaction to the announcement as one of “befuddlement,” largely because she’s “not quite sure what the initiative is.” Likewise, Dr. David Hovda of the Brain Injury Research Center at UCLA said, “This sounds more like a PR splash,” promising more than it will be able to deliver, than anything of real substance.

Perhaps the President has been somewhat inspired by the recent brain research coming out of The University of New Mexico, the findings of which were recently published by Dr. Kent Kiehl in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Some might see a loose connection between the UNM study and the fictional science in the major motion picture Minority Report.

While Dr. Kiehl’s findings don’t actually argue that we can accurately predict an individual’s predisposition to commit a specific crime (in a specific time and place, as the movie’s “pre-crime unit” suggests), his team of scientists has discovered a particular activity in the brain (impulsivity) that is directly correlated with recidivism rates. The findings indicate that criminals with low levels of impulsivity control are four times more likely to repeat offend and end up back in jail in as little as four months.

Dr. Kiehl suggests that this brain science could be used as part of a review or parole process when determining whether or not a convicted criminal is ready to re-enter society. There are clear ethical implications to this science, but it is possible that this administration is seeing some ways to connect the dots between some of its other, more nefarious initiatives (i.e., the drones program) and neuroscience.

Again, because the details of the proposal have not yet been released – and the current leaders in the neuroscience research fields haven’t been consulted on this initiative at all – one can only speculate on the objectives of the research. Left with no details on the proposal, and understanding that Congress will have to approve the funding before we can learn the details of the plan, skeptics of the President are likely to see this as yet another among many steps he’s taken to move us closer to the dystopian worlds of popular film and literature, where maybe the next “great” frontier will include Thought Police.

 

Obama’s Budget- Better than 4 Years Ago?

us_fed_debt

For all the accreditations given to Ronald Reagan, perhaps the greatest contribution he made to the political arena was a simple appeal to the logical minds of voters- Are you better off than you were 4 years ago? During the 1980 presidential campaign, Reagan’s strategy was simple. Let people look at the facts, the result of Carter’s policies, and see if they were really benefiting them.

Many people have compared Obama to Carter, and draw parallels between this election and the 1980 election. So, what could be more apt than to look at the Obama economy and ask, are you better off than you were 4 years ago?

The simple answer, based on Obama’s own economic numbers, is no.

Obama once promised that by the middle of this decade annual spending would match annual revenue and the government would not be adding to the federal deficit.

Yet, under his own budget, the Obama Plan for America, his best and smallest month of spending would add 608 billion dollars to the debt. That projection stays the same even if Obama serves a second term. That’s 33% worse than Bush’s worst month, where he added 458 billion dollars to the deficit.

And after 2015, Obama’s stated end of increases to the federal debt, the debt continues to grow. It continues to increase until 2021 when projections stop, to an estimated deficit of over 700 billion. Again, these numbers are according to Obama’s budget.

These numbers don’t even include the Congressional Budget Office’s projections for Obamacare. Obama claimed the cost of his healthcare plan would be 900 billion dollars over ten years. But the CBO estimates that the first full decade of implementation for Obamacare will cost 2.6 trillion dollars, nearly 3 times as much as Obama stated.

So, according to Obama’s own projected deficit numbers, the American people are not better off than they were 4 years ago, and based on the CBO’s projected cost of Obamacare and Obama’s own projected spending levels, it’s unlikely they’ll be better off in another 4 years.

 

AP Spins Obama's Unanimously Destroyed Budget as GOP Obstructionism

Ridiculously, the Associated Propagandists (AP) have tried to pin the Ø-414 slamming of the $3.4 Trillion “budget” Obama submitted to The House on an obstructionist GOP trying to make political hay in an election year. Oh, they didn’t write that, but let’s “deconstruct” the AP’s headline (via Yay-hoos):

GOP-run House easily rejects Obama budget

Normally, left-wing AP bias is about as unsurprising as a late-season Mets collapse, but in this case we’ll explore it a little further. What is a little surprising is that the AP would expose themselves as being totally in the pocket of the Democrat Party, instead of just being fellow-traveling left-wing ideologues. This is because the outfit is running cover for a president whose bill was shot down in flames by his own party, and yet the AP is trying to blame this solely on the Republican Party.

The intended reader inference from placing “GOP-run House” at the front of the headline is to frame the current event in the context of implied GOP obstructionism. There’s really no other way to read it, because the headline should logically read “House unanimously rejects Obama budget.” This obvious headline would be both more accurate and have around the same number of characters as the AP’s. Thus, there is no reason to cram “easily” in the headline when “unanimously” would convey more accurate information (unless you are an AP reporter with a limited vocabulary, which is entirely possible).

Another interesting aspect of the headline and the story is that the AP is trying to provide political cover to pretend “blue dog” Democrats up for re-election who don’t want to look like “left-wing extremists” unconcerned with deficits and debt spending. As a bonus the AP also gives cover to left-wing insaniacs who think the bill should go even further to restore “economic justice” (a catch phrase for plundering unearned wealth). How is this possible?

It’s possible because if the bill is defeated Ø-414 people will believe that there was a consensus in each party that something was wrong with the bill. But how can it be that some Democrat lawmakers voting against the bill would think that total spending was too high, and others would think that it was too low, while none would think that it was “just right”? The odd voting suggests a strategic public relations maneuver by the Democrat Party.

The Congressional Black Caucus, for example, proposed an alternative budget that sought $4 trillion more, which would be financed by tax increases on the rich (like that will help create jobs, right?).  This was defeated 107-314. So it stands to reason that the 86 Democrats who did not vote for the bill withheld support because they wanted to posture as relatively fiscally responsible to the voters in their district.

Understanding a few basic facts about the voting makes the AP narrative look absolutely absurd. Read the first few paragraphs from the AP piece:

The Republican-run House has overwhelmingly rejected President Barack Obama’s $3.6 trillion budget for next year after a vote forced by GOP lawmakers to embarrass Democrats.

Republicans have opposed Obama’s budget all year, criticizing its tax increases on the wealthy and saying it lacks sufficient spending cuts.

Democrats have defended Obama’s budget priorities but they largely voted “no” Wednesday night.

Let’s take this one at a time in rapid-fire succession. First, Harry Reid has forced votes on the Senate floor countless time. A quick Google search of ‘harry reid forced vote’ yields nearly 8 million hits. If the vote is “embarrassing,” then that makes the bill embarrassing, and the president an embarrassment. Also, the Republicans opposed Obama’s budget “all year”? So they are being obstructionist for still opposing it, even though Obama didn’t submit a balanced budget? Finally, every single Democrat present voted no on the bill, not “largely.” The Democrats who don’t show up, don’t count.

In conclusion, it is hard for an analyst to react to a left-wing media intentionally distorting the news without wishing to resort to satire, though this is becoming increasingly hard to do. The left is notoriously difficult to parody nowadays. In some cases, it is more useful to deconstruct the story.

More Obama Budget Buffoonery

President Obama’s newly released budget proposal will add another $1.3 trillion dollars to the nation’s already skyrocketing [under Obama] national debt. Why is it when Democrats propose a budget it is always heavily laden with “let’s borrow more today and start spending less tomorrow” trickery and false promises. As Grover Norquist reminded the folks at CPAC last weekend, Democrats promised President Reagan $3 in spending cuts for every dollar in new taxes, and then reneged on that promise after taxes were raised and instead increased government spending. Democrats also proved to be dishonest once again, when they promised President H.W. Bush a 2 for 1 cuts-to-new taxes promise, and again increased government spending instead of the promised cuts in spending. Now we see President Obama trying to pull the same trickery through dishonesty again, in his latest budget buffoonery.

Obama’s latest 2012 budget is “promising budget cuts” of a whopping $4 trillion dollars .. .wait for it…. some time in the very distant future. What happens in the current year of 2012? America’s debt-spender in Chief borrows another $1.3 trillion dollars that will be put on the backs of future generations of Americans, including every current taxpaying man, woman, and child. That statement is not just an opinion, it is a fact backed up by the President’s own words when he referred to the 2012 budget he is proposing. “We must transform our budget from one focused on speculating, spending and borrowing to one constructed on the solid foundation of educating, innovating and building,” the administration said. (emphasis added) In layman’s terms, that translates into, “Give me trillions more now that will make me out to look like a hero, while future administrations will be forced to mandate Greek-style austerity measures that include future super high taxation and government cuts in spending that resulted in the current burning chaos in Greece last weekend. For more related information on just how Greece’s debt problems were caused by big government hope and change mania, just like what Obama is doing in America, please read this.

Obama’s proposed 2012 budget gimmickry is outlined by some of the following info-bytes, courtesy of Fox News: (emphasis added)

The $4 trillion, 10-year spending plan — the last Obama budget proposal before the presidential election — uses savings from the Iraq and Afghanistan military withdrawals to drive down the deficit, pledges $476 billion over six years for infrastructure projects, $350 billion in short-term stimulus-style spending for job creation and $60 billion for teachers and first responders. It offers little in the way of entitlement reforms, the biggest driver of the national debt.

What is truly astounding is that not one so-called news agency is exploring the question of why does this “budget” use supposed savings and include spending cuts over 10 years? This is supposed to be a yearly budget, not a 10-year budget. Surely, President Obama doesn’t think that the Republicans controlling the House of Representatives are going to fall for the trick of the promised future budget cuts for more debt spending this year like Reagan and H.W. Bush did, does he? According to Obama’s current Chief of Staff, Mr. Jacob Lew. yes they do think Republicans are that gullible, according to Lew’s own statement concerning the amount of “promised budget cuts” in the future:

Added all together, Obama Chief of Staff Jacob Lewclaims that for every dollar of revenue in the plan, spending will be cut $2.50.“The goal is $4 trillion. This gets us to the goal,” Lew told “Fox News Sunday.”

Democrats lied to then President Reagan on the promised 3-to-1 spending cuts to taxes ratio, did it again to H.W. Bush on the 2-to-1 cuts to spending ratio, so now Obama and the Democrats have split the difference, promising [future] spending cuts of $2.50 for every dollar increase in the proposed Democrat’s big government debt-spending plan in 2012. Wake up America, especially the Republicans who are now in charge of the House.  Please do not fall for this budget buffoonery, which “promises” spending cuts in the future for another added $1.3 trillion dollars in national debt this year. Barack Obama will be long gone by the time America will be forced to deal with her [big government] debt problems, leaving Republicans to face the civil chaos of Greek-style austerity measures in the future.