The following is an excellent article from the January 1-15, 2014 issue of The Progressive Populist from page 22 titled “Dispatches: GOP Puts Sweetheart Deals In Must-Pass Spending Bill” and I quote:
“GOP PUTS SWEETHEART DEALS IN MUST-PASS SPENDING BILL.” As Congress neared a deadline to pass a $1 tln spending bill to keep the government open for nine months, some Democrats were balking at measures demanded by Republicans that, among other things, would let banks use federally insured deposits to trade in highly speculative derivatives (one of the factors that led to the 2008 economic crash). Another provision would allow wealthy individuals to give $324,000 to national party committees — 10 times more than the current limit of $32,400.
The 1,600-page bill, which was released late the night of 12/9 for action 12/11, funds most of the government through September 2015, but only funds the Department of Homeland Security through February. Republicans hope to restrict Obama’s immigration order when the party controls both the House and Senate.
The bill also cuts $60 mln from the budget of the EPA, which has lost $2.2 bln (21%) since fiscal 2010; it cuts $345.6 mln from the IRS and bans the tax agency from targeting organizations seeking tax-exempt status based on their ideological beliefs; it allows benefits from multi-employer pensions to be cut for as many as 1.5 mln retirees in an effort to save some of the nation’s most distressed pension plans; it cuts $93 mln from the Women, Infants and Children program; it reduces funding for the Pell Grant program for low-income college students by $303 mln to make up a shortfall in the money budgeted for companies that collect student loan debts on the government’s behalf. The bill bans the D.C. government from implementing the marijuana legalization that 69% of D.C. voters approved 11/4. The bill also orders the US Postal Service to continue six-day mail delivery, so there’s that.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) called on House Democrats to use their leverage to reject the bill until the measure that would roll back a piece of the Dodd-Frank financial reform law is removed. [The House passed the bill Dec. 11.]
“Who does Congress work for?” Warren said in a Senate speech (12/10). “Does it work for the millionaires, the billionaires, the giant companies with their armies of lobbyists and lawyers, or does it work for all the people? … Now, the House of Representatives is about to show us the worst of government for the rich and powerful. The House is about to vote on a budget deal, a deal negotiated behind closed doors that slips in a provision that would let derivatives traders on Wall Street gamble with taxpayer money and get bailed out by the government when their risky bets threaten to blow up our financial system.”
(THE PLUTOCRATS , WHO ARE RUNNING THIS COUNTRY AND THE WORLD, BEING BILLIONAIRES, ARE CREATING CLASS WARS THAT ARE SO BAD THAT THEY ARE STARTING CIVIL WARS. THE $1.1 TRILLION SPENDING BILL IS SO BAD, GIVING THEM 10 TIMES MORE MONEY TO SPEND ON CAMPAIGNS, IS JUST EXACTLY WHAT IS WRONG IN THIS COUNTRY AND AROUND THE WORLD. WHY OUR GOVERNMENT LET JAMIE DIMON, CEO OF JPMORGAN CHASE, VIRTUALLY LOBBY AND THEN BUY OFF ENOUGH PEOPLE IN CONGRESS TO GET THIS THROUGH IS VIRTUALLY FRIGHTENING. OUR MAJOR MEDIA, AFTER YEARS OF THE GROWING, UNREGULATED, TOXIC DERIVATIVE MARKET, NOT TO BE CHALLENGED IS TOTALLY RIDICULOUS. DERIVATIVES ARE DEFINITELY NOT AN ASSET, LIKE MANY OF THE ASSETS GROWN OR MINED ON ANY AMERICAN FAMILY-RUN FARM AND THAT, TOO, IS GETTING OUT OF CONTROL BECAUSE OF THE SIZE AND THE PROPAGANDA THE PLUTOCRATS ARE PROMOTING THAT THE “BIG IS BETTER” THEORY IS THE WAY TO GO. OUR POLITICIANS IN WASHINGTON ARE BEING LED AROUND BY THE NOSE BY OUR BIG INVESTMENT BANKERS, JUST AS BADLY AS DICK CHENEY LED AROUND GEORGE W BUSH WHEN HE TALKED HIM INTO INVADING IRAQ. IT SHOULDN’T HAVE TAKEN US YEARS AND YEARS OF WAR TO FIND OUT THAT THE MAJORITY OF THE ARAB PEOPLE ARE NOT WAR-LIKE PEOPLE. AND THE PEOPLE IN SYRIA, WHO THEY SEEM TO BE ZEROING IN ON AS THE BAD GUYS COULD BE JUST A CIVIL WAR TOO. WE’RE NOT EVEN SURE WHICH SIDE WE SHOULD HELP. THAT’S WHY IT’S CRITICAL THAT WE PICK OUT THE RIGHT PRESIDENT IN 2016 SO WE DON’T KEEP MAKING SO MANY MISTAKES. THE NEXT ARTICLE FOR TOMORROW IS TITLED “CITIZENS SHOULDN’T HAVE TO FORCE GOVERNMENT TO ENFORCE LAW” BY JIM GOODMAN ON PAGE 14 IN THE SAME ISSUE.
LaVern Isely, Overtaxed Independent Middle Class Taxpayer and Public Citizen and AARP Members