The front of Monday’s New York Times featured socialist-spouting economics reporter Peter Goodman using Prescot, a struggling town in northwest England, as a cudgel for Margaret Thatcher bashing worthy of a Marxist professor: "After Years of Fiscal Belt-Tightening, England is Feeling the Pinch – Prolonged Budget Cuts Reshape British Life.” Goodman started hot and didn’t let up: "A walk through this modest town in the northwest of England amounts to a tour of the casualties of Britain’s age of austerity."
UPDATE, May 27: A writer at the BreakingDefense.com website estimates that Mainland China's defense spending on a Purchasing Power Parity basis is $434.5 billion, and that its spending plus Russia's PPP spending of $157.6 billion is only about 2 percent below the USA's $606 billion.
On Friday's The Five on Fox, Juan Williams sharply criticized President Donald Trump's speech that morning at the Naval Academy's graduation ceremony. Williams condemned Trump's speech as "wrapped in patriotism ... the flag, and ... the military," and claimed that his appearance was really about co-opting the military's "high approval ratings among the American people to transfer to him." Williams's attack, though predictable, was accompanied by a significant distortion of U.S. military spending compared to the rest of the world which the remaining show panelists did not challenge.
In its April 2018 Monthly Treasury Statement, the federal government reported that it ran an all-time single-month record $214 billion surplus, primarily because it took in a record $510 billion in receipts. The Associated Press's Josh Boak ignored the collections record, even though the AP noted the previous record when it occurred in 2015. Instead, Boak presented a different and far smaller out-of-context collections figure, and falsely claimed that the Republican Congress's tax cuts are responsible for the increase in fiscal 2018's seven-month budget deficit compared to last year. This negligence irresponsibly enables leftist pundits to continue to scream that the tax cuts aren't working, despite growing evidence that they really are.
On Wednesday's CBS Evening News, in a report on Louisiana's budget battle which the piece suggested could "kill people" with cuts to Medicaid, correspondent David Begnaud seemed to think it was only important to identify the party affiliation of the Republican state legislators involved, even though the governor whom he also spoke with, John Bel Edwards, is a Democrat.
The press has mostly gone off the rails in covering President Trump's proposal to rescind $15 billion in unspent funds, insisting on characterizing the move as "cuts." The competition for the worst coverage is fierce, but Andrew Taylor's story at the Associated Press, as carried at the Washington Post, probably wins the prize for the most incoherent headline: "Administration proposes cutting $15 billion in unused funds."
“Budget Hawk” Mick Mulvaney is the latest conservative in the crosshairs of the New York Times. The front of Wednesday’s edition featured a very long, quite hostile profile by Glenn Thrush and Alan Rappeport of Mulvaney, Trump’s budget director and current head of the Obama-era agency, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau: “Budget Hawk Hones Claws at Consumer Bureau.” When he wasn't a ravenous hawk, he was an excitable dog: "...he sprung to life like a Jack Russell terrier off leash."
When President Bill Clinton signed the welfare reform act in 1996, which he negotiated with then-Speaker Newt Gingrich, the left claimed people would starve. They didn't. According to the nonpartisan Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, between 1996 and 2000, the employment rate for single mothers increased from 63 percent to 76 percent.
In a bipartisan vote on Thursday, the House passed a truly massive omnibus spending bill spanning 2,232 pages and some $1.3 TRILLION. The spending increases that the bill called for would help to jack up our already out of control $21 TRILLION national debt. But for both ABC’s World News Tonight and CBS Evening News, the bigger concern was that there was no solution for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Meanwhile, NBC Nightly News didn’t mention the spending bill at all.
The media rarely complain about deficit spending when liberals are at the helm, doling out taxpayer dollars like candy from a parade float. But once Republicans are in control, journalists can’t wait to complain.
The panel of MSNBC Live With Stephanie Ruhle took a brief time-out on Wednesday from speculating about White House Chief of Staff John Kelly to take a few lazy swings at the President’s new budget proposal for the SNAP food assistance program. The proposed policy would function similarly to services like Blue Apron, with beneficiaries receiving packages of pre-selected nutritious food items. It would also reduce the current program’s budget by 30%.
A tale of two speeches: On Thursday, the New York Times Sheryl Gay Stolberg celebrated House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi’s marathon speech, “8 Hours, 7 Minutes and 1 Pelosi Soliloquy.” While not wholly laudatory, Stolberg fawned over Pelosi’s "heart-rending" defense of the so-called Dreamers. Sen. Rand Paul also delivered a delaying tactic of a speech, but Rand isn't nearly so highly regarded at the Times, accused of "bemoaning" and "sloganeering."
Some people have called for a balanced budget amendment to our Constitution as a means of reining in a big-spending Congress. That's a misguided vision, for the simple reason that in any real economic sense, as opposed to an accounting sense, the federal budget is always balanced. The value of what we produced in 2017 -- our gross domestic product -- totaled about $19 trillion.