Tag Archives: Tom Coburn

Rebuttal of Sen. Coburn’s defense cuts proposals

Among the deepest, and most destructive, proposals of defense cuts made in recent years are those made by Sen. Tom Coburn in his “Back to Black” pamphlet, which he advertises in his newest book as necessary.

If implemented (God forbid), his proposals would cut over $1 trillion out of the defense budget over the next decade (i.e. over 100 bn every year), and defense would take by far the biggest share of the hits under his plan. All other federal agencies and programs, including the Big Three entitlement programs, would see only small budget cuts by comparison – nothing even comparable to the massacre that Coburn wants to inflict on the military.

While some of his proposals would target and eliminate truly wasteful programs, the majority of his proposals, including those with the biggest budgetary consequences, pertain to crucial, absolutely needed weapon programs and force structures, cuts to which would dramatically weaken, if not outright gut, the US military and its ability to protect America. And that’s not an exaggeration.

Specifically, he proposes to:

To take a few examples:
1) Cut spending on the nuclear arsenal and the arsenal of means of delivery by $7.9 bn per year, i.e. $79 bn over a decade, for purely budgetary reasons, by:
a) cutting the nuclear stockpile down to the inadequate levels allowed by the disastrous New START treaty (former SECDEF James Schlesinger deems them “barely adequate”);
b) cutting the ICBM fleet from 450 to 300 missiles (i.e. by a whopping 200 missiles);
c) cutting the SSBN fleet from from 14 to 11 subs;
d) delaying, again, for purely budgetary reasons, the Next Generation Bomber program until the mid-2020s when it hasn’t even been allowed to begin; and
e) maintaining a reserve stockpile of just 1,100 warheads;
f) cutting the strategic bomber fleet to just 40 aircraft compared to the current 96 nuclear-capable B-2s and B-52s and 66 non-nuclear-capable B-1s.
This is the worst of all his proposals by far. The disastrous New START treaty, which does not cover tactical nuclear weapons (in which Russia has overwhelming advantage), ordered the US to cut its nuclear arsenal to already-inadequate levels, so that Russia could quickly reach strategic nuclear parity with the US while retaining its lead in tactical weapons. Cutting the US nuclear arsenal down to levels authorized by this treaty is a mistake; cutting it further would be an ever bigger mistake; cutting it by a whopping 200 ICBMs, 3 SSBNs, and hundreds of warheads would be an egregious blunder which would make America much less safe and invite a Russian nuclear first strike, as the US would have far fewer ICBMs than Russia has (at least 369, and probably up to 469).
Coburn also proposes to forego any modernization of the deterrent until the mid-2020s, including the dual-role nuclear/conventional strike bomber fleet. A requirement for a Next Generation Bomber  is real and was officially acknowledged by the DOD 5 years ago, in 2006, in that year’s Quadrennial Defense Review. It was later confirmed by the 2010 QDR. It was subsequently acknowledged by DOD leadership, including Secretary Gates, and by the DOD’s 2012 Defense Strategic Guidance.
Also in 2010, the CSBA – which Coburn likes to cite as a source – released a report (authored by retired USAF Colonel Mark Gunzinger, who has participated in all defense reviews to date) stating that an NGB is an urgent requirement which must be met by 2018 at the latest and that consequently, the NGB program must not be delayed any longer.[1] Another CSBA analyst’s report reached the same conclusion in 2009.[2] Successive SECDEFs from Rumsfeld to Panetta have said the same, as have the current CSAF and SECAF, their predecessors, their colleague Adm. Greenert, former LTG David Deptulanumerous former Air Force Secretaries, Chiefs of Staff, Generals, and other officials, and numerous outside experts from the CSBA[1][2][3], Air Power Australia, and the Heritage Foundation. (Please read their studies; they explain very well why the NGB is absolutely needed.) This requirement has also been validated bySecretary Gates, who started the NGB program and said that China’s A2/AD weapons will put a premium on America’s ability to strike from the horizon and require a family of long range strike systems. As Gates rightly said in January 2011:

“It is important that we begin this project now to ensure that a new bomber can be ready before the current aging fleet goes out of service.  The follow on bomber represents a key component of a joint portfolio of conventional deep-strike capabilities – an area that should be a high priority for future defense investment given the anti-access challenges our military faces.”

Delaying/cancelling the NGB would emasculate the USAF, making it (except its small B-2 fleet) unable to operate in anything than very benign, permissive environments where opponents lack meaningful SAM systems, and thus make China, Russia, Iran, North Korea, and Venezuela sanctuaries for America’s enemies, allowing them to husband their assets from harm. It would send a signal to America’s enemies that Washington won’t be able to bomb them.

Delaying, or even worse, cancelling the development of the Next Generation Bomber would cause the Air Force to completely lose its already small (due to the small size of the B-2 fleet) long-range penetrating capability by the time B-2s lose that capability. This, in turn, would cause the USAF to be unable to strike any targets protected by modern IADS and/or fighters, thus creating huge sanctuaries for America’s enemies – a scenario that America cannot accept.

It is therefore imperative to begin the NGB’s development NOW – not a year from today, not in 2023, not in 2024, but NOW – and to complete it BEFORE the B-2 loses its penetrating capability. Especially since it’s the centerpiece of the AirSea Battle strategy of defeating China if need be.

If procured, the NGB will frequently be called into action, as have been the three existing bomber types, which have seen extensive action in the First Gulf War, Kosovo, Afghanistan, Iraq, and Libya. It won’t spend much time in hangar. The demand for USAF bombers vastly outstrips the supply.

AirPowerAustralia’s peer-reviewed analysis shows that:

“Advanced Russian technology exports present a major strategic risk for the US, whether operated by China, or smaller players like Iran or Venezuela. These systems will deny access to most US ISR and combat aircraft, with only the B-2A, the “2018 bomber” and the F-22A designed to penetrate such defences. With its compromised X-band optimised stealth, the F-35 JSF will simply not be survivable in this environment.

The fallback position of standoff bombardment with cruise missiles is not viable. Only a fraction will reach their targets through such defences, and the economics of trading $500k cruise missiles for $100k interceptors, or hundreds of dollars of laser propellant, favour the defender. Time of flight is problematic given the high mobility of air defence targets, and targeting the cruise missiles no less problematic given denial of ISR coverage. (…) Current planning for 180 F-22As and the legacy fleet of 20 B-2As is simply not credible given the diversity of roles and missions, and sheer sortie count required to deal with anything above a trivial opponent.”

Likewise, CSBA expert Thomas Erhard warned in 2009 that without a Next Gen Bomber:

“The proliferation of sophisticated Russian air defense systems means the only US systems that can reliably penetrate and maintain a high survivability rate in the presence of integrated air defenses populated by SA-20B and SA-21 surface-to-air systems and modern Russian or Russian derivative (e.g., Su-35BM) fighters will be the F-22 and the B-2.” [2]

In short, the NGB is absolutely necessary, and the nuclear triad is the last part of the military that should be cut. And for all of these draconian cuts, Coburn would “save” only $7.9 bn per year, whereas my proposals of cutting the DOD’s administration spending alone would save taxpayers well over $10 bn per year. In fact, his proposals would likely not save anything close to what he promises: the entire ICBM leg of the nuclear triad costs only $1.1 bn per year, and the entire bomber leg only $2.5 bn per year, to maintain.
2) Ending the purchases of V-22 Ospreys at no more than 288 aircraft, thus allowing some Marine H-46s to retire unreplaced, and not having the V-22 Osprey as an option for the USAF’s CSARX competition. Buying MH-60s instead. The savings: a meagre $0.6 bn a year, or $6 bn over a decade.
This proposal is just as dumb as the first one. Barring the USAF’s bombers (B-52s, B-1s, and B-2s), there isn’t a single weapon type in America’s inventory that is as combat-proven and as battle-tested as the V-22, which has been widely used in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Libya. It is more survivable, and can fly much farther and faster, than any other rotorcraft in history, and can fly to places where other rotorcraft cannot. When an F-15E was downed in Libya earlier this year, it was a V-22 that rescued its crew. The V-22 is a must-have aircraft type. Orders for it should be increased, not cut. And contrary to Coburn’s claim, it costs only a little more than an MH-60: $67 mn for a V-22 vs at least $44 mn for an MH-60.
Not only are they inferior to it (in terms of speed, range, and survivability), the H-60 is too small, too slow, and too light to do the V-22′s tasks (which include CSAR). These 2 designs represent 2 completely different weight and duty classes of VTOL aircraft and are meant for different duties. Only a totally ignorant person would equate them and suggest they are interchangeable.
The V-22 is an excellent VTOL plane capable of flying twice faster and twice farther than any helicopter. It has served extensively in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Libya. It has amassed over 150,000 flight hours. It is also much more survivable than helicopters – if you crash, you’ll likely survive. Its problems have been solved long ago.

The V-22 is an excellent, unmatched aircraft, as validated unanimously by all USMC leaders past and present, including the current Commandant, who is a Naval Aviator by trade. He, the expert, should be listened to – not anti-defense POGO hacks. It has proven itself in three wars in three different countries – Iraq, Afghanistan, and Libya. (When an F-15E crashed in Libya, it was a pair of V-22s that rescued the pilots.) It underwent its baptism of fire in Iraq in 2007, during the fiercest fighting there. POGO’s claim that it is “neither cost- nor operationally-effective” is a blatant lie.

And as defense expert Dr. Robbin Laird writes:

“The beauty of the speed of the Osprey is that you can get the Special Operations forces where they need to be and to augment what the conventional forces were doing and thereby take pressure off of the conventional forces. And with the SAME assets, you could make multiple trips or make multiple hits, which allowed us to shape what the Taliban was trying to do.

“The Taliban has a very rudimentary but effective early warning system for counter-air. They spaced guys around their area of interest, their headquarters, etc. Then they would call in on cell or satellite phones to chat or track. It was very easy for them to track. They had names for our aircraft, like the CH-53s, which they called ‘Fat Cows.’

“But they did not talk much about the Osprey because they were so quick and lethal. And because of its speed and range, you did not have to come on the axis that would expect. You could go around, or behind them and then zip in.”

As Dr. Laird rightly writes, the V-22 isn’t just a great performer, it has revolutionized warfare and the way Marines think about it. (Please read his entire article.)

3) Canceling the Marine (STOVL) and Navy (CATOBAR) variants of the F-35, buying F/A-18E/F Super Hornets instead. The saving: a paltry $700 mn per year, i.e. $7 bn per decade.
This proposal, frequently stated by those who wish to cut the defense budget deeply, is fundamentally flawed, because it’s based on two wrong assumptions: a) a Short Takeoff and Vertical Landing variant is not needed; b) the Super Bug is interchangeable with the F-35.
There is clearly a requirement for a STOVL variant, as confirmed by USMC Commandant Gen. James Amos, who is himself a Naval Aviator. He knows the F-35B better than anyone. Coburn’s assumption that a STOVL variant won’t be needed is based on wishful thinking. As for the second assumption: no, the Super Bug is not an alternative to, nor even substitute for, the F-35. It’s basically a redo of the F/A-18 Hornet, a plane that first flew in the 1970s. It can operate only in benign, uncontested airspace.

Super Bug has no such capabilities. Not turning capability, not thrust, not TTW ratio, not speed, not range and combat radius, not stealthiness (and thus survivability), and not weapons possible for integration (the F-35 can, for example, be fitted with Meteor A2A missiles; the Super Bug cannot). And the Super Bug’s combat radius (350 nmi) is DECISIVELY inferior to that of the F-35B (450-500 nmi) and F-35C (650 nmi, making the F-35C the longest-ranged of the 3 F-35 models). Range and endurance are absolutely vital for strike aircraft, as is stealthiness, because it determines survivability, which is key to winning ANY war. If a plane is not survivable, it’s worthless – and that’s exactly true of the Super Bug. And as stated above, stealthiness is necessary for any aircraft due to the proliferation and sophistication of enemy air defense systems.

The “proven” Super Bug, like B-1s and B-52s, has “proven itself” only in permissive environments (Afghanistan and Iraq) where the only opponent is an insurgency unable to contest control of the air. It is useless for any war theaters in which the enemy is a country with advanced IADS and/or fighters. It’s not even fit for any real A2A combat (and has not partaken in any), because it’s not a real fighter, but rather an attack jet, and is decisively inferior against current and projected enemy fighters by all criteria.

And it doesn’t have the STOVL capability required to take off from and land on amphib ships and primitive airfields, which is an absolute non-negotiable USMC requirement, as confirmed by USMC Commandant Gen. Amos. Without the F-35B, the Marines won’t have their own air cover when disembarking from ships and the Nation will lose 50% of its carrier-based strike aircraft fleet when the Harrier retires. Furthermore, cancelling the F-35 would relegate Marine and Naval Aviation solely to COIN environments, emasculating these services and barring them from any contested airspace – the kind of environment American servicemen will face in the future.

Put simply, the Super Bug is not an alternative to, or even a substitute for, the F-35. It’s a facelifted model of an attack jet that first flew in the 1970s. The F-35 is a 21st century strike fighter. Both are strike aircraft with jet engines… and that’s where the similarities end.

4) Retiring the USS George Washington early, cutting the carrier fleet permanently to 10 and cutting the number of carrier air wings from 10 to 9. This would save a paltry $600 mn per year, i.e. $6 bn over a decade, at a large cost to America’s defense.
This would also be reckless. Contrary to Coburn’s claim, during the Cold War, the USN needed – and always had – at least 15 carriers. Throughout the Cold War, the Navy had no fewer than 15 carriers. The flattop fleet was not cut until after the Cold War. In 2007, the Congress reluctantly agreed to cut the carrier fleet from 12 to 11, while simoultaneously writing a well-grounded requirement for at least 11 carriers into law. Last year, the Congress again reluctantly agreed to waive that requirement – but only for two years, from 2013 to 2015, until the USS Gerald R. Ford is commissioned. As studies by the Heritage Foundation have repeatedly shown, the Navy needs no fewer than 11 carriers at any one time. Cutting the carrier fleet and the number of CAWs would be reckless.

With 11 carriers, 7 are operational and 4 are in drydock or in homeport at any one time. 7 is barely enough to provide enough carrier strike groups where they’re needed. CENTCOM’s commander has requested a third carrier group (to deter Iran), which leaves just four for use elsewhere, e.g. in the WestPac.

But if the carrier fleet is cut to 10 (and they’ve suggested cutting it to just 9, by retiring the George Washington and foregoing CVN-80′s construction), no more than 6 carriers will be available for duty at any given time. Assuming that CENTCOM will get the 3 carriers it says it needs, that leaves 3 flattops for duty elsewhere, e.g. in the WestPac. Now, suppose that China starts a war over the oil/gas fields in the South China Sea at the same time that CENTCOM needs to deter (and possibly strike) Iran? That ain’t a farfetched scenario – China is close to provoking a war right now, and the time for eliminating Iran’s nuclear program is running out. [2] Yet, if Coburn gets his way, the Navy would have only 3 carriers to deploy to the WestPac to deter/defeat China… unless you deny CENTCOM the 3 carriers it needs.

Carriers have participated prominently in every war the US has partaken in since WW2: Korea, Vietnam, Operation Eldorado Canyon, the two Gulf Wars, the Afghan War, Bosnia, Kosovo, and the bombing of Libya. There’s a huge demand for them. Without carrier air wings and intercontinental bombers, the US wouldn’t have been able to strike Afghanistan after 9/11.

In short, it would be a deep cut in America’s military strength and capability to defend itself. It epitomizes Coburn’s destructive proposals.

5) Cancelling the Precision Tracking Space Satellite (PTSS) program of the Missile Defense Agency.
This program is necessary to create a constellation of 6 dedicated satellites tracking ballistic missiles, a capability that none of America’s current satellites offer, and only the Army’s AN/APY-2 radars can, which Coburn does not propose to procure.
6) Cutting the total number of troops deployed in Europe and Asia to just 45,000.
While Europe can certainly defend itself on its own, having only one plausible enemy (Russia), this cannot be said of America’s Asian allies. The US can afford to withdraw troops from Europe but not Asia, where any American drawdown would be viewed as a sign of weakness and disengagement, which Sec. Panetta and President Obama have both recently tried to prevent, trying to assure America’s Asian allies that this will not happen. Furthermore, withdrawing units from Asia would deprive them of in-theater bases needed to respond to contingencies (including aggression) such as possible Chinese aggression against its neighbors. Bases and units stationed in Europe are also needed to project power into other theaters. When a Marine unit was dispatched to reinforce the Marines at the US consulate in Benghazi, it came from NS Rota, Spain (which is just a few hours of flight away from Benghazi), NOT from the CONUS.

As Heritage Foundation’s Luke Coffey rightly writes:

“forward basing U.S. troops in Europe is just as important today as it was during the Cold War, albeit for different reasons. U.S. military bases in Europe provide American leaders with increased flexibility, resilience, and options in a dangerous world. The garrisons of American service personnel in Europe are no longer the fortresses of the Cold War, but the forward operating bases of the 21st century.

The U.S. military presence in Europe deters American adversaries, strengthens allies, and protects U.S. interests—the U.S. reduces the number of these troops at its peril. U.S. can project power and react to the unexpected because of its forward-based military capabilities in Europe. Reducing these capabilities will only weaken America on the world stage.”

So Coburn’s proposals would, if implemented, “only weaken America on the world stage.”

7) Using the $100 bn savings that Secretary Gates for deficit reduction, not for military modernization as Sec. Gates wanted and the Services – which worked hard to find these savings – were promised by Gates, President Obama, and the Congress.
These savings were to be used for a number of military modernization programs, including purchases of additional ships, modernization of the Army’s combat vehicles, and the forementioned Next Generation Bomber program. Taking that money away from them and using it to pay the bills for a deficit caused exclusively by runaway civilian spending would not just be dumb, it would be an act of heinous betrayal.
(8) Delay the Ground Combat Vehicle for purely budgetary reasons. The saving: a paltry $700 mn per year, i.e. $7 bn per decade.
For purely budgetary reasons. Do I need to say more?
9) End the Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle program without replacement, not with a replacement as Sec. Gates proposed.
The decision of Sec. Gates (whom Coburn quotes selectively) to cancel the over-budget, delayed Marine amphibious truck vehicle known as the EFV was the right one. However, as a replacement, Gates proposed starting a new, less complex, less costly amphib program that is scheduled to produce the first amphibious trucks in 2014, so that Gen. Amos can ride in them before he retires in late 2014. As both Gates and Amos have stated, there is a clear requirement for such a vehicle. The USMC’s obsolete, Vietnam War era AAVs must be replaced. Coburn proposes not to replace them.
1o) Cutting DOD weapon RnD spending by 10% in FY2012, then by another 10% in FY2013, and then freezing it for a further 8 fiscal years.
Again, this is motivated purely by budgetary concerns, not military ones. Coburn claims that from FY1981 to FY1988, the DOD received, in constant dollars, $407 bn, and he claims that is only $51 bn per year. He’s wrong, and apparently can’t do simple math. $407 bn divided by seven is $58.142857 bn, i.e. ca. $58.143 bn. He proposes to cut RnD spending to a paltry $58.0 bn and keep it there, even though that is LESS than what was invested during the Reagan era.
On top of that, Coburn proposes to eliminate or cut many expenditures that are outright wasteful or excessive, but rather than reinvest at least a part of them in military modernization, he proposes to use them to pay for a deficit caused exclusively by runaway civilian spending.
In short, Sen. Coburn’s defense cuts proposals, totalling over $1 trillion per decade and $100 bn per year on average, would gut the US military and thus jeopardize national security. For that reason alone, they are absolutely unacceptable.
…………………………………………….
References:

[1] Mark Gunzinger, Sustaining America’s Advantage in Long Range Strike, Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments, Washington DC, 2010. Available online here.

[2] Thomas Erhard, An Air Force Strategy For the Long Haul, CSBA, Washington DC, 2009, pg. 83.

[3] Robert Haffa and Michael Isherwood, Long Range Conventional Strike: A Joint Family of Systems, Joint Force Quarterly issue #60, 1st quarter of 2011, National Defense University, Washington DC, 2011, available online here.

[4] According to retired LTG David Deptula, the need for a next-gen bomber was validated as early as the 2001 QDR, pointing to anti-access/access-denial threats and to contested airspace in particular. See here.

U.S. Has 2-5 Years Before Financial Meltdown

We all know it’s coming, but how long will it be before the United States reaches the point of no return? Senator Tom Coburn believes our “Greece” moment of financial meltdown is coming within 2 to 5 years, saying that the federal government is in the “midst of committing murder to our republic”.

Letter to Congress: Uphold Your Oath or Resign

January 10, 2012

Sen. Inhofe, Sen. Coburn, Rep. Boren:

I am writing concerning several issues that show a total contempt for the Constitution and We the People of the United States of America by Barack Obama, and more frightening, the Congress of the United States of America. I have just been made aware of S. 1698 which seeks to strip citizenship from citizens “engaged in war against the United States”. I realize the wording is vague and leans towards double-talk on purpose, and that is what I take issue with. It seems members of Congress are systematically stripping We the People of any right to protest, or fight against the tyranny being foisted upon us by our own government, and parsing words to accomplish their sinister task.

This is supposedly aimed at “homegrown terrorists” but we all know the definition of that term today. The only parameter of the Homeland Security profile I don’t fit is that I still have all of my fingers. Their definition of “homegrown terrorist” seems to be aimed at patriotic American citizens not the true terror threats, Islamic radicals. As a matter of fact, I haven’t seen Islamic radicals on their list of dangerous people, so-called “potential terrorists”. I fit the profile but Muslim males 18-35 don’t. Oops, sorry, can’t profile Muslim males 18-35, that is racist. This all seems a bit odd to me since we have been attacked by these nuts several times, and can expect even more attacks, including the possibility of a nuclear attack on one or more of our cities.

This comes on the heels of S. 1867/HR 1540, a bill which blatantly broadens the ability of the president to order the indefinite detention of any citizen without charges, at locations within or outside of the United States. I know it has been said that this does not refer to We the People, but Sen. Lindsey Graham, Sen. John McCain, and Barack Obama have publicly disputed that notion. Sections 1021 and 1022 are in direct conflict with each other as to the meaning of the wording, which lends a great deal of lee-way towards tyranny if one should be inclined and I tend to think one would be inclined based on the actions I see coming from Washington D. C. every day.

The NDAA also provides for the staffing of the FEMA camps, the ones that have been denied to exist. When I wrote about those camps a couple of years ago I was told they are for victims of natural disasters. No one answered my concerns about the design of the camps to resemble the Nazi concentration camps of World War II. I don’t understand the need for 12 ft. high fences topped with razor wire and barbed wire, just to provide temporary homes for flood, hurricane, or tornado victims. Why are they suddenly being staffed by the NDAA, with bids going to Halliburton recently? Are we expecting an unforcasted natural disaster to crop up any time soon or is it in preparation for the imposition of martial law and the suspension of the Constitution as requested by North Carolina Governor Beverly Perdue, Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr, Rep. Maxine Waters, and others in congress?

Pile all of this on top of S. 679, legislation that takes any away oversight by Congress in presidential appointments and we have the end game of a dictatorship, ala Venezuela. I see Congress deliberately abrogating their responsibilities under the Constitution and giving this, or any, president the right to do as he wishes regardless of the law. When we have United States Senators saying a president should be allowed to appoint anyone he wants regardless of their intentions regarding upholding the Constitution We the People have every right to be concerned. The extension of the “Patriot Act” wasn’t blatant enough so we have to go with even more. That law alone is so unConstitutional that it takes away the very basis of our Republic.

Today, the 10th Circuit upheld the ruling by Judge Vicki Miles-LeGrange that State Question 755, the anti Sharia and International Law bill, as being unConstitutional. This passed with 70% of We the People voting for it. This is more tyranny based on the whining of CAIR, claiming it is unConstitutional because it bars using Sharia Law in Oklahoma. Any idiot should be able to see Sharia Law goes against the Constitution and is therefore not applicable in America. SQ 755 has nothing to do with religious freedom. I fail to see how this can be ruled unConstitutional in the first place, much less upheld on appeal.

Members of Congress, as do federal judges, swear to uphold and defend the Constitution but I don’t see that happening in Congress or the courts much these days. I see bill after bill, judicial ruling after judicial ruling, coming through that denigrates my freedom and no one up there seems to give it a thought. I know bills don’t get read because of the surprise on the faces and in the words of members of Congress when the provisions come out. The two biggest backers of the NDAA, Graham and McCain, didn’t know about the removal of sodomy and bestiality rules for our military. Is that to accommodate Muslims? After all, they are known for their affection for animals. After it was passed and signed, they feign surprise with, “I didn’t know that was in there”. What else did they, or you, not know is in there?

Gentlemen, WE the People are fed up. We are only going to take so much before your rules are going to fall on deaf ears and we will run our nation without you. You are employees of We the People, not monarchs. We decide what is Constitutional and what is not. Government has grown too big for its britches and needs to take a good look at how our nation was designed. When patriotic citizens of this nation are called terrorists and the real terrorists are called victims of bigotry something is very wrong. Our nation is on the verge of collapse and Congress has its foot on the accelerator running us off a cliff.

It is time for you to stand up and publicly call for the resignations of John Boehner and Mitch McConnell. It is time for you to stand up and demand the arrest of Barack Obama, Eric Holder, and Kenneth Melson over Operation Fast & Furious. They should be arrested and held without bond for murder in the death of border patrol Agent Brian Terry, conspiracy to commit murder, conspiracy to violate gun laws, and treason for conspiracy to subvert the 2nd Amendment by their involvement in Operation Fast & Furious.

They should not be allowed to flaunt any law that I am expected to abide by. What do you think would be my fate if I violated the same laws blatantly violated by them? If you are not willing to do this then you have no right to expect me or any other American citizen to obey any law anywhere. You certainly do not have the right to expect us to honor your legislation if you cannot honor the Constitution. Do your duty, your sworn duty, to uphold the Constitution of the United States of America and stop playing word games with We the People.

I submit this in the name of the Most Holy Trinity, in faith, with the responsibility given to me by Almighty God to honor His work and not let it die from neglect.
In God We Trust,

Bob Russell
Claremore, Oklahoma

Sen. Coburn Releases Report on Wasteful Govt. Spending: "Wastebook 2011"

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – U.S. Senator Tom Coburn, M.D. (R-OK) today released a new oversight report, “Wastebook 2011” that highlights over $6.5 billion in examples of some of the most egregious ways your taxpayer dollars were wasted. This report details 100 of the countless unnecessary, duplicative and low-priority projects spread throughout the federal government.

“Video games, robot dragons, Christmas trees, and magic museums. This is not a Christmas wish list, these are just some of the ways the federal government spent your tax dollars. Over the past 12 months, politicians argued, debated and lamented about how to reign in the federal government’s out of control spending. All the while, Washington was on a shopping binge, spending money we do not have on things we do not absolutely need. Instead of cutting wasteful spending, nearly $2.5 billion was added each day in 2011 to our national debt, which now exceeds $15 trillion,” Dr. Coburn said.

“Congress cannot even agree on a plan to pay for the costs of extending jobless benefits to the millions of Americans who are still out of work. Yet, thousands of millionaires are receiving unemployment benefits and billions of dollars of improper payments of unemployment insurance are being made to individuals with jobs and others who do not qualify. And remember those infamous bridges to nowhere in Alaska that became symbols of government waste years ago? The bridges were never built, yet the federal government still spent more than a million dollars just this year to pay for staff to promote one of the bridges.”

Examples of wasteful spending highlighted in “Wastebook 2011″ include:

• $75,000 to promote awareness about the role Michigan plays in producing Christmas trees & poinsettias.

• $15.3 million for one of the infamous Bridges to Nowhere in Alaska.

• $113,227 for video game preservation center in New York.

• $550,000 for a documentary about how rock music contributed to the collapse of the Soviet Union.

• $48,700 for 2nd annual Hawaii Chocolate Festival, to promote Hawaii’s chocolate industry.

• $350,000 to support an International Art Exhibition in Venice, Italy.

• $10 million for a remake of “Sesame Street” for Pakistan.

• $35 million allocated for political party conventions in 2012.

• $765,828 to subsidize “pancakes for yuppies” in the nation’s capital.

• $764,825 to study how college students use mobile devices for social networking.

Read the full report: here

Sen. Tom Coburn: Tax Payers Subsidizing Millionaires

A few days ago, I heard a little snippet on the radio about John Bon Jovi receiving farm subsidies from the federal government. I was busy writing another article, so I jotted down a note to remind me to look into this. Frankly, when I heard the report I was both shocked and skeptical at the same time. I thought, “Surely multi-millionaire performers aren’t being paid farm subsidies with my tax money”. I had just heard Barack Obama talk about rich people paying their “fair share of taxes”. Well, today I decided to take a look at this obviously bogus attempt by vicious, hate-filled conservatives to slander our messianic leader.

As it turns out it wasn’t slander at all. I did a search for ”Sen. Tom Coburn + subsidies” and guess what I found, a 36 page report by the Senator from Oklahoma listing billions in tax dollars going to some of the richest people in this nation every year. This link will take you to the entire report.

In the letter to taxpayers Sen. Coburn wrote:

These billions of dollars for millionaires include $74 million of unemployment checks, $316
million in farm subsidies, $89 million for preservation of ranches and estates, $9 billion of
retirement checks, $75.6 million in residential energy tax credits, and $7.5 million to compensate
for damages caused by emergencies to property that should have been insured. All and all, over
$9.5 billion in government benefits have been paid to millionaires since 2003. Millionaires also
borrowed $16 million in government backed education loans to attend college.

On average, each year, this report found that millionaires enjoy benefits from tax giveaways and federal grant programs totaling $30 billion. As a result, almost 1,500 millionaires paid no federal income tax in 2009.

I have also listed a portion of the report that lists some of the different subsidies that these ultra-wealthy people draw from the same government that taxes me, and from the same Barack Obama that castigates the rich as “not paying their fair share”.

Summary of Total Payments and Tax Breaks to Millionaires
Total Amount of Government Payments to Millionaires
Program Years Total Amount Paid to Millionaires
Social Security Retirement Benefits 2004-2009 $9 billion
Unemployment Insurance 2005-2009 $74 million
Farm Program Payments 2003-2009 $316 million
Conservation Program Payments 2009-2010 $89 million
Disaster Housing Payments 2007-2010 $7.5 million
Total Amount of Payments $9.5 billion
The annual average amount of government payments to millionaires is $1.6 billion.
Total Amount of Tax Breaks Claimed by Millionaires
Tax Breaks Years Total Amount Deducted by Millionaires
Mortgage Interest Deduction 2006-2009 $27.7 billion
Rental Expenses Deduction 2006-2009 $64.3 billion
Gambling Losses Deducted 2006-2009 $21 billion
Cancelled Debt Deduction 2008-2009 $128 million
Business Entertainment Expenses
Deduction
2006-2009 $607.7 million
Electric Vehicle Credit 2009 $12.5 million
Childcare Tax Credit 2007-2009 $18.15 million
Renewable Energy Credit 2009 $75.6 million
Total Taxpayer Cost to the Treasury of all
Credits and Deductions
$113.7 billion

The annual average amount of tax breaks claimed by millionaires is $28.5 billion.

John Bon Jovi, Bruce Springsteen, Ted Turner, and Quincy Jones are just some of the names I have turned up in looking into this scam. How is it that these people can take money from hard working Americans and pad their extravagant lifestyles with money taken through threat of prison if we don’t pay up? Aren’t these the same liberal elite who decry lack of government support of the poor? It seems to me they have no conscience when they yell about the plight of the poor yet turn around and take this kind of money away from those same poor people, as well as from the tax paying citizen who works every day to scratch out a living. Where are the Occupy Wall Street people when you need them? Why aren’t they in Hollywood or at the White House with their squawking?

I saw some video of Barack Obama in Kansas a few days ago, using his best Benito Mussolini pose, spouting his latest campaign tactic about rich people not paying their fair share of taxes. I just wrote an article about that very speech, combined with a clip of an MSNBC interview with T. Boone Pickens that I heard on the radio. Obama rails about the rich not paying their fair share, then sticks his nose up in the air just like Il Duce used to do. All the while, he looks around to the applause of a crowd so apparently ignorant of the truth that they applaud and cheer when they should be booing and throwing shoes. If they would only take a minute to see the things I see, and take a real objective look at what is truly happening!

After seeing that display in Kansas, I stumbled onto my note about the subsidies for ultra wealthy entertainers and media moguls, and began to look into this situation. What I found is not only alarming it is disgusting. How can Obama stand up there and lie without any semblance of shame? And when I say lie, I don’t mean he “misunderstands” the situation. And I don’t mean the “lying is a state of mind” line Eric Holder is trying to pull at the Fast and Furious investigations.

Obama recently stated that if he didn’t get the debt ceiling raised, Social Security recipients, military personnel, and those depending on welfare checks would do without because Republicans hate poor people. I don’t remember him mentioning John Bon Jovi not receiving his farm subsidy, or Ted Turner having to do without is unemployment check. I don’t remember Obama mentioning poor Scottie Pippen doing without an evening meal if the debt ceiling didn’t go up $2.4 trillion.

Here we find another example of the class warfare being waged by Democrats to divide and conquer the populace. It doesn’t help that some of the wealthiest in our nation stick their hands out and virtually steal from those truly in need, and those of us paying the bill to help those in need.

The corruption in our government is monumental, and I fear fatal to our Republic. There is no need for anyone in America to go to bed hungry. Some choose to do so because they are lazy, and content looking for a constant handout. Many more are victims of the corruption in Washington D. C. How many people have lost jobs due to the tax burdens on small business owners, or even giant corporations, tax liabilities that caused them to have to lay workers off? How many homes have been lost due to pay cuts people had to take to keep the job they had in this economy?

The sad tale of this is that it isn’t only Obama and it isn’t only Democrats. If you will look at the report put out by Senator Coburn you will find some of this goes back to 2004, a time when Republicans owned the White House, the Senate, and the House of Representatives. This isn’t a partisan problem, it is a systemic problem. Greedy people empowered by greedy politicians to take advantage of those with no influence, no money, and no voice in government.
This link to CBS News mentions Scottie Pippen, Ted Turner, John Bon Jovi, Quincy Jones, and Bruce Springsteen.

This next link adds Maurice Wilder, a real-estate developer and part owner of a professional sports franchise to the list.

Go to this link and get page after page of stories on this.

This is revolting at the very least. Common people work hard and barely exist while the political class and some of the ultra-wealthy literally steal food out of the mouths of starving children. Some may disagree with my terminology but what else can one call this action?

This is not what our founding fathers, with the protection of Divine Providence, created. Our founding fathers created a nation where everyone has an equal chance to prosper but it has been perverted through greed and corruption. The unions pay Democrats for favorable legislation every day and now we find out that they are only the tip of the iceberg.

How will our nation survive if we continue this? Both political parties take from the poor and give to the rich. Isn’t this the story behind Robin Hood and his Merry Men of Sherwood Forest, evil rulers taking from peasants for themselves and their friends? We need a modern day Robin Hood, a man like John Dummett and a band of merry men recruited by Tim Cox of GOOOH. If we elect the same rogues gallery that has been running things in Washington we can expect the same results we have seen in this report by Senator Coburn.

We are in dire need of patriots to run for office and patriots to have the courage to vote out those who have created this situation. The definition of insanity is to continue doing the same thing and expecting different results, or in this case, electing the same corrupt politicians and expecting different results.

I submit this in the name of the Most Holy Trinity, in faith, with the responsibility given to me by Almighty God to honor His work and not let it die from neglect.

Bob Russell
Claremore, Oklahoma
December 9, 2011

Gang of Six Plan .. or Not [Full Text]

Senator Tom Coburn rejoined the deficit panel known as the “Gang of Six” just in time to help sell a non-balancing, non-binding piece of not legislation that the President pointed to as a possible solution to the budget crisis.

The proposal is not legislation. It’s a set of guidelines for Congressional committees to then take back and come up with ideas on how to implement the guidelines. There is little hope of all of that coming together in a bill and garnering the necessary votes by August 2nd.

File:US Federal Debt as Percent of GDP Color Coded Congress Control and Presidents Highlighted.pngThe proposal promises to reduce publicly-held debt to around 70% of GDP by 2021. That is precisely the ratio of debt-to-GDP that Obama started with in 2009. Since then, the Democrat-controlled Congress and White House have skyrocketed that to almost 100% of GDP. That means that the proposal will never balance the budget – ever.

All but a tiny portion of the plan is typical can-kicking. Only $500 billion will be cut from the budget immediately. The rest is over time, totally relying on committees to suggest ways to hit the guidelines – which they won’t. Even if they did, the plan will likely only reduce the deficit by about $4 trillion over ten years.

The immediate cuts are achieved by changing the method by which cost-of-living increases are calculated and by implementing some temporary discretionary spending caps.

The proposal also eliminates the alternative minimum tax and restructures the tax code to 3 tax brackets instead of the 6 it now has. Loopholes and deductions will be reduced and the rates will be lowered in all of the brackets. This should lead to a broader tax base, but due to the failure to eliminate the earned income tax credit and other lower-end tax loopholes, the middle class will bear the brunt of this broadening. The plan would also leave Obama without his tax hikes on businesses, jets and the wealthy.

Entitlement reform is not concretely dealt with in the plan. The cost of living increase is not significant enough to make Social Security and Medicare solvent. That single reform will simply slow the annual increases to payees by 0.25%. It does nothing to stem the tide of baby boomers soon to flood the programs. Without a change to means testing and an increase in the eligibility ages, no significant improvement to these entitlement programs outlook can be expected.

$500 billion in cuts while approving $2.4 trillion in new debt. The math doesn’t work. By failing to come up with a solution to balance the budget, Sens. Conrad and Coburn have failed to take hold of an historic opportunity. The 112th Congress will not be the ones to finally set America on a fiscally-sound course.

Conrad Budget Executive Summary