Monday, March 02, 2009

Obama's big-government agenda

President Obama's budget tells us more than his speeches about how intends (or hopes) to govern, and it ain't "from the center" as so many pundits and prognosticators have figured (some with relief, some with impatience) based on his early appointments and his soothing rheotric and cool, easy-going manner. As this Register editorial notes, he really plans the kind of statist transformation he alluded to from time to time during the campaign (if somewhat vaguely). You can't say he was dishonest, exactly, though he wasn't all that specific. Money quote:

"We can add millions of people to government-paid health care while finding savings that reduce overall health expenditures? Not exactly. This budget projects additional spending in health care of some $634 billion over 10 years as a "down payment" on health care "reform."
The extra spending can be paid for by winding down the Iraq war and raising taxes on those earning more than $250,000, with everyone else not paying a dime more in taxes? Well the Iraq and Afghan wars cost about $190 billion in 2008, and this budget calls for spending $140 billion this year and $130 billion next year."

Fantasyland, folks.

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