Previous post:

Next post:

White House Contradicts Pelosi, Then Itself

by Keith Koffler on February 11, 2013, 6:40 pm

Well this was refreshing. At first. And then I felt less refreshed. Actually, a little icky.

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney today directly contradicted House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, who made a fantastic voyage to Mars over the weekend and came back with the conclusion that while the United States has a deficit problem, “It is almost a false argument to say we have a spending problem.”

Asked about this notion, which Pelosi later acknowledged was “called to my attention by my imaginary friend Kelpy Spinkledots,” Carney minced no words, and even sounded a bit derisive.

Of course, the President believes that we have a spending problem that is specifically driven by — and I think every economist worth this — whose insights into this area are worth the paper on which his or her Ph.D. is printed, would tell you that the principal driver when it comes to spending of our deficits and debt is health care spending.  And that’s just a fact.

But almost immediately, Carney began emitting irrelevant statements that made it sound like OBAMA MIGHT NOT DO ANY MORE THAN PELOSI about spending.

What is also a fact is that we have reduced non-defense discretionary spending to its lowest level as a percentage of our economy since Dwight Eisenhower was President.

Oh no, not that one again. Actually, it’s only a “fact” by the very loooooooosest definition of the word “fact.”

Obama is indeed reducing non-defense discretionary to historically low levels. And our hero is doing it with no more than a a fountain pen!

That is, he crossed off tens of billions of dollars in surface transportation spending that had been labeled as “discretionary” spending and wrote it into the “mandatory” spending account, putting it alongside Social Security and Mediare. Ditto several billion more in Pell Grants, which also became “mandatory” spending.

And voila, Obama actually is cutting discretionary spending! It’s magical.

If Bush did this, BTW, the press would be raging about his funny bookkeeping.

And then, omigosh, oh no no no no no. This:

The President has put forward entitlement reforms that would further reduce our health care costs.

What he doesn’t believe is that we need to simply shift our health care costs onto seniors — basically say we’ve got a problem that is now yours, Mr. 75-year-old American, or Mrs. 75-year-old American.  He believes that we ought to reduce these costs and not shift them onto seniors.

So we’re going to tackle entitlements without making anyone any less entitled! Just somehow get doctors to charge less for MRIs. Or to start using a Magic Eight Ball as a diagnostic tool instead.

Wonderful. Pelosiesque. It appears Kelpy Spinkledots is not just Nancy Pelosi’s imaginary friend, he’s running OMB.

{ 12 comments }

srdem65 February 11, 2013 at 7:03 pm

Goodness, I agree with MrCarney; healthcare costs are not going to be shifted on to seniors, but onto the backs and out of the wallets of the young.
The shifting (or shafting) happened to seniors when the Dems raided Mecicare to balance the books on Obamacare, but now it’s all up to the young, college educated, middle class to carry the load.

Star February 12, 2013 at 2:43 pm

And of course many of them take time off from bounding up and down mountains and paragliding to suggest that old people quit their oos and ahs of pain and incessant demands for tests and hospitalizations. Oh–and don’t eat that cake, fatso. Eyeroll.

Susan February 11, 2013 at 9:03 pm

This just goes to show that Washington, D.C. has an addiction problem. The first step is admitting to themselves that they have a problem. No budget for four years is like hiding a bottle of whiskey in the clothes hamper. Little do they know, we the people have found their hiding place. They keep sneaking into the laundry room to take a secret nip, but we caught them chugging on the bottle. They aren’t fooling anybody but the useful idiots. We see what their addiction to spending is doing to our children and the future of this country. Time for some tough love. Either keep to the sequestration plan that both sides of this big spending leviathan agreed to, or be prepared to be turned out on the street by your bosses – we the people.

WNY_ROC February 12, 2013 at 12:42 am

Interesting – “we don’t want to shift our healthcare costs on to seniors” even though they consume the most heathcare.

I read an interesting column by Walter Williams (http://www.lewrockwell.com/williams-w/w-williams46.1.html) that in part said:
========
“According to the Census, around 80 percent of Americans 65 and older own their own homes compared to 43 percent under 35. Twenty-three million households, or 37 percent of all homeowners, own their homes free and clear, and most of these are seniors aged 65 and older. According to the Federal Reserve Board’s 2007 “Survey of Consumer Finances,” the median net worth of people 65 and over is $232,000, those under 35 years have a net worth of $12,000 and for those 35—44, it’s $87,000.

For good reason, older people have accumulated more wealth than younger people; the primary reason is that they’ve had more time to do it. There is no logical case that can be made for using the tax system to force Americans with less wealth to subsidize those with more wealth. But it’s not clear who is subsidizing whom. Consider an elderly widow, say 70-years-old, with a modest retirement income of $18,000 living in a $300,000 house that’s fully paid for. She might receive local property tax forgiveness, medical and prescription drug subsidies and other federal, state and local subsidies based upon her age and income.

When subsidies are provided for this lady, whom are we truly benefiting? It’s not the lady but her heirs. Conceivably, the lady could make a deal with a financial institution to pay her property taxes, allow her to live in the house for the rest of her life and give her a lump sum cash settlement so that she can live without the handouts. Upon her death, the house becomes the property of the financial institution, not her heirs. Giving the widow handouts allows her to bequeath to her heirs her assets, a $300,000 house. If her children want to inherit the house, they, rather than taxpayers, ought to take care of their mother.”
=========
OK – I’m back . . . and I’m so tired of the use of the term “fixed income” when referring to senior income. My company hasn’t given out COLA or raises in 5 years, but SS goes up each year (except once). My job could be eliminated tomorrow, but SS recipients will get paid every month. How do we get Dr. Williams and Dr. Carter inserted into the Washington process?

Guillermo Grande February 12, 2013 at 7:27 am

Nice work. Now back to work 41.

Star February 12, 2013 at 2:47 pm

Those “handouts” to the widow–those would be Medicare and SS? There are so many offhand, specious, and lame statements in that, I have no idea where to begin. Most adult children DO take care of their parents!

Jeff1000 February 12, 2013 at 4:14 am

What about the oil subsidy lie that Pelosi kept repeating over and over and Chris Wallace let her get away with it? There are no oil subsidies, just deductions available to any business.

These bald-faced lies are allowed to be perpetuated on the public unchecked, and that’s a major reason we’re stuck enduring four more years of of this lunacy and corruption from the left.

A “deficit problem”! You gotta be kidding me. This is a tactic that a teenaged daughter might use on her daddy to keep buying more shoes, to be able to keep spending, like Pelosi and the left.

The media has done a grave injustice to the American people by allowing a political hack like Nancy Pelosi to get away with her lies.

AFVet February 12, 2013 at 12:33 pm

I agree with you, and Wallace let her get away with it.
Also, she stated that we don’t have a spending problem, we have a deficit problem,…..huh ?
Wallace is a puss, he’s afraid of her.
FOX is beginning to suck more and more.

Jeff1000 February 12, 2013 at 3:16 pm

Wallace is a Harvard grad. Need I say more?

Just2old February 12, 2013 at 6:16 am

Pelosi’s dementia is a result of Botoxitis….she needs to cut back and sag like the rest of us.

cincycinco February 12, 2013 at 8:28 am

I don’t know if Pelosi uses Botox at all. Her venom is more toxic than any botulism strain that ever existed, so I don’t know if it would work on her.

She keeps the “sag” down by sucking the life out of America into herself. THAT”S why she’s so relentless…

Jeff1000 February 12, 2013 at 8:36 am

Yeah, once she gets removed from the public feeding trough she’ll melt away like the Wicked Witch of the West (Left).