Over the weekend, the Senate passed the 1,600-plus page omnibus spending bill, which authorizes some $1.1 trillion in spending spanning myriad topics, including $63 billion in “emergency” war funding to the Pentagon.
The bill is drawing attention for Congressional efforts to cram anything and everything into the bill, from war funding to federal funding for municipal projects, and even surveillance. The ISIS war even gets $5 billion in direct funding, even though the war itself hasn’t been authorized by Congress.
On the surveillance front, the omnibus bill opened a lot of eyes by including what Rep. Justin Amash (R – MI) termed the “first statutory authority for the acquisition, retention, and dissemination of US persons’ private communications obtained without legal process such as a court order or subpoena.”
Elsewhere, the bill trampled on other legal principles, including giving the State Department the authority to bypass requirements that Egypt actually end military rule to get its military aid restored.
The scope of the individual abuses stuck in the omnibus bill are at times enormous but the sheer number and scope of them is overwhelming, which very much seems to be the point, avoiding fueling too much debate of any single abuse of power by cramming them all into the same bill at once, and giving enough Congressmen enough handouts along the way to ensure a majority vote.
The omnibus strategy seems to be working, too, as for all of the individual Congressmen complaining about individual problems with the bill, nowhere near enough found enough fault with the bill itself to vote against it.
5 thoughts on “The Omnibus Bill: War, Pork, and Bigger Government”
So the money is going to magically appear? I foresee tax hikes and confiscations.
Was Krugman having a wank lately about "the deficit is under control, I told you so?" (of course it was based on brazen liies as it is NOT under control, not by several hundred billion dollars per year).
Productivity — A product of morality not government force
This bill is the product of the 25% most intelligent minds in America, the 25% most wealthy, the rich ruling class who own three-fourths of all the wealth in the richest Empire the world has ever known.
For by intelligent design we are all given a different level of intelligence, so that society may function with decency and order, so that our economy may have the greatest productivity possible.
Now just because the purpose of this world is to reach the ultimate conclusion of greed, with most people created to be in love with greed, that does not in the slightest change the fact that we must always be in submission to all who are more intelligent or — suffer unbearable persecution.
Which begs the question, can’t we at least have a nationwide strike or two to instill some morality into the ruling class? But, that is socialism ruled by the middle-class with their middle-speed minds, which always gets infiltrated by faster thinkers and reverts back to capitalism.
But, what we the people can do is get caring instead of greedy, establish for ourselves a moral society and thereby teach our ruling class how to have the most productive economy the world has ever known.
From within the Roman Empire expired with a convulsion, but it took hundreds and I don’t think that global warming will allow us that luxury.
A better way, if we could organize but 5% of society to go for a nationwide strike and civil disobedience unlimited, it could be a catalyst that unites a majority against our Empire.
Claiming "We just don't have the funds" Congress cut billions of dollars from food stamps and other safety net programs during the past two years. Yet here they are spending, in a single year, several multiples of the amount "saved." Yes, 2.5 million homeless and hungry children in the US can comfort themselves with the thought that Syrian "rebels" – future ISIS recruits – won't suffer any shortages. Will the Republican majority in the 114th Congress decide tax cuts for the rich should be a top priority for 2015? I wouldn't bet against it, or against enough support from Democrats – who voted yes in large numbers on this omnibus bill – to pass such legislation.
Last two paragraphs of above are in error.
"…nowhere near enough found enough fault with the bill itself to vote against it."
Or were sufficiently threatened by Leadership to get them to take the knee. The next election should start with an effort to remind the American voters who voted for this monstrosity and why they should not be re-elected.
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