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Thread: Obama backs pet projects and signs spending bill

  1. #21
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    Re: Obama backs pet projects and signs spending bill

    Quote Originally Posted by Reverend_Hellh0und View Post
    I am just afraid the projects you see funding for in the LEO and HS fields could have been much more if there were far less of these idiotic programs included in these bills.
    You'll see no argument from me on this. In fact the public safety oriented bills I lobby for are actually relatively small ($500,000 to $1 million each tops) compared to many of the pork barrel amendments on the spending bills. We have to fight for every penny because we don't donate to campaigns. It's grass roots all the way, we get our Congressional support through a campaign of support letters and phone calls from LE, public safety, and local political figures.

    furthermore, worthy programs like the ones you keep hinting at get a negative connotation and view attached to money for tattoo removal for crack whores.
    I agree with this as well. It's why always harp that not all earmarks are bad or pork.

    +1 for the Rev.
    Last edited by Lerxst; 03-12-09 at 05:48 PM.
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    Re: Obama backs pet projects and signs spending bill

    Quote Originally Posted by HelloDollyLlama View Post
    1. Obama promised to reform earmarks, not eliminate them entirely in the middle of an impending government shutdown; even reforming them is really the Congress's prerogative, not his.
    Agreed.

    2. What you call "pet projects" are, by an overwhelming majority, projects that are actually helpful, and create jobs.
    I am kind of on board with this part. I have my opinions on the usefulness of large transportation earmarks that are out of sync with the actual traffic issues of a region, and certain research and development earmarks make me raise an eyebrow.

    3. They come to about 2 percent of the total bill.
    Agreed, it's a very small portion, which is why it's a running joke in Washington that there is so much focus on home state earmarks and very little on poorly managed programs that sucks tens of billions of taxpayer dollars that, if cleaned up and made more efficient, would actually offset home state earmarks.

    4. And a huge proportion of them were forced in there by Republicans.
    Nothing was "forced." They were negotiated. The Democrats don't hold a filibuster proof majority nor do they think they will hold the majority forever. Why do you think Reid and Co. stopped Pelosi from stripping the bill and operating off of a CR for the fiscal year? It's the political negotiation process. Each side know the minority will get fewer earmarks, but they never cut them out completely. They need cooperation and earmark negotiation helps keep that cooperative spirit in tact. Earmarks mean dollars and votes back home. And that...you don't **** with too much.

    5. This bill shouldn't even have been on the table now -- Bush should have signed it months ago. Too bad he was on a mental vacation for the last several months of his presidency.
    Congress was responsible for keeping it from Bush, specifically the Democrats. They didn't want him vetoing the bill (as he threatened to do in order to strangle the Dems, which in turn made several Republicans with earmark interest say "hold the phone"). They knew that they could negotiate a bill that Obama would sign.
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  3. #23
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    Re: Obama backs pet projects and signs spending bill

    Quote Originally Posted by scourge99 View Post
    In otherwords, "I'm far too distracted with the Messiah to even address the issue of pork projects being included."
    What? You don't really need to inject anything in to what I said. I was being very frank with my answer. The only ones who seem distracted by Obama are people like you who can't seem to focus on the words that people actually type. You let your "anti-Obama" flavor your post to the point that it didn't make any sense.

    But you keep reading into it what you want. Forgive me for not knowing the exact percentage of "good amendments vs. bad amendments" on a 1,300+ page Omnibus spending bill. Yeah, it's my glazed over "Obama" glasses that are the issue here. Seriously, the whole "Obamabot" strategy is really very played out on this particular board.

    Last edited by Lerxst; 03-12-09 at 06:26 PM. Reason: Cleaned up a point.
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  4. #24
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    Re: Obama backs pet projects and signs spending bill

    Quote Originally Posted by Lerxst View Post
    You'll see no argument from me on this. In fact the public safety oriented bills I lobby for are actually relatively small ($500,000 to $1 million each tops) compared to many of the pork barrel amendments on the spending bills. We have to fight for every penny because we don't donate to campaigns. It's grass roots all the way, we get our Congressional support through a campaign of support letters and phone calls from LE, public safety, and local political figures.


    I agree with this as well. It's why always harp that not all earmarks are bad or pork.

    +1 for the Rev.
    Every single person asking for an earmark believes that their particular project is worthwhile. The problem isn't that they aren't necessarily worthwhile, its that the federal government shouldn't be lumping your projects in with the budget and then holding the operations of the country hostage unless they're all voted up or down together.

    If your projects are as great as they seem, they should be able to stand on their own merit. The fact that you like them doesn't justify the earmark process.
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    Re: Obama backs pet projects and signs spending bill

    Quote Originally Posted by Lerxst View Post
    What? You don't really need to inject anything in to what I said. I was being very frank with my answer. The only ones who seem distracted by Obama are people like you who can't seem to focus on the words that people actually type.
    Aren't you even a little curious about the pet projects? That is what everyone has been up in arms about afterall.

    You let your "anti-Obama" flavor your posts to the point that they don't even make sense.
    Yes, the man I voted for is thus far a big turd sandwich. No doubt about it. I still hold out hope but so far he has shown that he either doesn't have the balls to take a stand or is 100% in agreement with the crape that has been passed in Congress.

    But I'll hold my breath longer and give him a chance... he still has 4 years left.

    But you keep reading into it what you want. Forgive me for not knowing the exact percentage of "good amendments vs. bad amendments" on a 1,300+ page Omnibus spending bill.
    how about you just one?
    If you believe in the Supernatural then you can become a millionaire!

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    Re: Obama backs pet projects and signs spending bill

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC View Post
    Every single person asking for an earmark believes that their particular project is worthwhile. The problem isn't that they aren't necessarily worthwhile, its that the federal government shouldn't be lumping your projects in with the budget and then holding the operations of the country hostage unless they're all voted up or down together.
    I agree. But at this moment in time, that's how it works. I don't like it. Why don't you and I come up with a plan to fix it and see how far we get?

    If your projects are as great as they seem,
    They are.
    they should be able to stand on their own merit.
    They do, in the current process as prescribed by government.

    The fact that you like them doesn't justify the earmark process.
    Well I never said they did. But the earmark process is the mechanism for obtaining the needed funds. The COPS Technology Program is funded almost entirely by the earmark process.

    So what do you and I do RNYC?
    *insert profound statement here*

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    Re: Obama backs pet projects and signs spending bill

    Quote Originally Posted by scourge99 View Post
    Aren't you even a little curious about the pet projects? That is what everyone has been up in arms about afterall.
    Look, I may be curious, but I've been immersed in this process for the last five years. The "bridge to nowhere" was vehemently and successfully defended when scrutinized. I may not like it, but I have to work in it. I'm just not beating myself over the head yelling to draw attention to the obvious. I am the first to scream that we need more scrutiny in the process and I'll tell you why. My projects take second, third, and fourth seat every damned year to things I believe to be crap. I'm trying to improve public safety and I'm competing with things like new water taxi projects, renovating down town mainstreet, and ATV courses. My projects are very transparent and easily defensible. Very few would argue about better voice and data communications between the various public safety entities, or implementation of better law enforcement information sharing infrastructure.

    Yes, the man I voted for is thus far a big turd sandwich. No doubt about it. I still hold out hope but so far he has shown that he either doesn't have the balls to take a stand or is 100% in agreement with the crape that has been passed in Congress.
    I don't know who you voted for so I'm not quite sure what to make of this. You accused me of basically being too mesmerized by Obama to be troubled with the problematic spending of Congress. I was slightly offended by that since that isn't even remotely the case. I know all to well about the earmark system and I'm telling you there are much bigger things to worry about in terms of what Congress is doing. Homestate earmarks are between 1 and 2 percent of the overall budget. And of that 1 to 2 percent, many very good projects reside.

    But I'll hold my breath longer and give him a chance... he still has 4 years left.
    Okay.

    how about you just one?
    Ummm...huh?
    Last edited by Lerxst; 03-12-09 at 07:01 PM.
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    Re: Obama backs pet projects and signs spending bill

    Quote Originally Posted by Lerxst View Post
    I agree. But at this moment in time, that's how it works. I don't like it. Why don't you and I come up with a plan to fix it and see how far we get?
    It's not like it's that complex. Just have these things voted on separately. We've done it that way for decades and the world didn't end.

    Well I never said they did. But the earmark process is the mechanism for obtaining the needed funds. The COPS Technology Program is funded almost entirely by the earmark process.
    If it's that great, it should be funded either way.

    So what do you and I do RNYC?
    Say that this is bull****? Vote for people who won't do this? Hold people to promises not to do this? Oppose it uniformly, rather than supporting it when it's something that each of us individually might think is cool?
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    Re: Obama backs pet projects and signs spending bill

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC View Post
    It's not like it's that complex. Just have these things voted on separately. We've done it that way for decades and the world didn't end.
    Do you know how many votes that would take? It's not feasible. That's why we have huge spending bills with little pork projects hidden in them in the first place. If you cut the number of home state earmarks to a quarter of what it is that would mean Congress would have to vote on 2,000 separate projects, on top of EVERYTHING else they have to vote on. Couldn't be done in a year and still have government function. Not unless they work twelve hour days and don't take vacations. I'd rather they work on fixing things that constitue more than 1 to 2% of the burden to the budget...like Social Security, Medicare, Defense, and Immigration.

    If it's that great, it should be funded either way.
    I think you're right, it should be.


    Say that this is bull****? Vote for people who won't do this? Hold people to promises not to do this? Oppose it uniformly, rather than supporting it when it's something that each of us individually might think is cool?
    Okay so where do we start? I thought we did this at the polls but I'm game for any other ideas that are out there.
    Last edited by Lerxst; 03-12-09 at 11:34 PM.
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  10. #30
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    Re: Obama backs pet projects and signs spending bill

    Quote Originally Posted by Lerxst View Post
    Do you know how many votes that would take? It's not feasible. That's why we have huge spending bills with little pork projects hidden in them in the first place. If you cut the number of home state earmarks to a quarter of what it is that would mean Congress would have to vote on 2,000 separate projects, on top of EVERYTHING else they have to vote on. Couldn't be done in a year and still have government function. Not unless they work twelve hour days and don't take vacations. I'd rather they work on fixing things that constitue more than 1 to 2% of the burden to the budget...like Social Security, Medicare, Defense, and Immigration.
    How on earth could we ever function without so many earmarks?



    I don't remember Congress working 12 hour days back in 96, and yet they had less than 10% of the number of earmarks we have now. There's absolutely no practical reason why we can't get back to those numbers, at a minimum.


    Okay so where do we start? I thought we did this at the polls but I'm game for any other ideas that are out there.
    Step 1: Display your displeasure in a slightly more angry tone than this:

    Quote Originally Posted by lerxt
    I'm glad he signed it. Some very good national security and state and local public safety projects are going to get done. I'm just tickled!
    To someone who isn't aware of your burning desire to fix this problem, that could almost be seen as saying that you're happy with the process.
    People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.

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