Earmarks not going away anytime soon

Freedom New Mexico During his hot-blooded adolescence, while grappling with the urgency of conversion and the pleasures of the flesh, St. Augustine, of the famous “Confessions,” is said to have prayed: “Lord, grant me chastity and self-control — but not just yet.” President Obama may have uttered something similar to himself last week, as he […]

Congress anxious to put pork back on its menu

Editorial Congressional Democrats did an admirable job of purging pork barrel projects — also called earmarks — from spending bills that were left unfinished when Republicans were ousted from power last fall. They had to do something, given all their campaign rhetoric about those fiscally feckless Republicans. But whether they can for long hold the […]

Bills slated for first 100 hours of House better left undone

By Freedom Newspapers Perhaps the worst aspect of new House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s promise to pass a passel of poll-tested bills during the first 100 hours of the 110th Congress is that the exercise will not be over after 100 hours as ordinary mortals count them. The countdown doesn’t begin, as Democrats calculate matters, until […]

Earmarking funding sure to end in scandal

Editorial If anyone still believes the changing of the guard in Congress will curtail the annual raids on ye ol’ pork barrel, or end the practice of earmarking special expenditures for the home district or state, they didn’t read last Sunday’s story in The New York Times, “As Power Shifts in New Congress, Pork May […]

Timid gestures won’t slow congressional spending

Editorial Just as it took the anti-Communist Richard Nixon to go to China, because anyone else would have been accused of cuddling up with the Reds, perhaps it will take congressional Democrats — a party never associated with fiscal discipline — to help put a halt to the abuse of pork-barrel earmarks. Or perhaps Speaker-in-waiting […]

Shaming Congress away from pork barrel won’t work

Editorial There’s a serious flaw in the thinking of reformers who believe congressional pork-barrel spending can be curbed by forcing members to attach their names to the pet projects (or “earmarks”) they slip into appropriations bills, in circumvention of the normal budget procedures. They hope bringing more transparency and accountability to the process will shame […]