Monday, June 21, 2010

Heller Blames Wrong Source for Nevada's Problems

Following the report that Nevada's unemployment rate increased to 14 percent in May, Rep. Dean Heller, R-NV, put out the following statement:
"I am deeply concerned with the most recent unemployment numbers which place Nevada with the highest unemployment rate in the nation. While our economy continues to struggle and Nevadans seek work, the U.S. House of Representatives just this week voted on measures to recognize that milk and bald eagles are good and to honor the Hollywood Walk of Fame. It is time for Nancy Pelosi and this Congress to focus on measures that will actually improve the economy."

"Since the passage of the stimulus, Nevada's economy has continued to decline. Despite assertions to the contrary, it does not appear that jobs are being saved or created under the current economic plan. I hope the most recent numbers serve as a wake-up call for the Speaker to finally put partisan politics aside and work towards real solutions that get Americans back to work."

Well duh, the stimulus won't necessarily help Nevada, given our economic choices.  It's not Obama's policies that caused our problems, nor is it Pelosi's.  Nevada's leadership is the sole owner of our economy and its woes.  Nevada's economy relies too heavily on 'tourism.' The focus of Las Vegas, our biggest population center, is almost exclusively on tourism. If the rest of the nation is in recession, that means they have less discretionary dollars to spend.  Thus, they're not going to fly to Nevada to spend and gamble away precious dollars that they would need to put food on the table or a roof over their heads.  Our over-reliance on tourism is the problem.  We need to diversify our economic base such that we don't rely so heavily on tourism.

For decades, Nevada has concentrated its efforts on cultivating two primary boom and bust industries, gambling and gold mining.  When a recession hits, or the price of gold plummets, our economy tanks, unemployment goes through the roof, housing values plummet and people start filing for bankruptcy.

Then in that same announcement, he went on to tout a bill he had introduced, HR 5453, the Protecting Against Indebting our Descendants through Fully Offset Relief (PAID FOR) temporary extension act.
"This legislation would extend unemployment benefits and COBRA premium assistance, prevents the impending cut for Medicare providers, and extends the National Flood Insurance and Small Business Loan Guarantee Program.  Unlike the legislation that passed the House, Heller’s bill is fully paid-for, utilizing unobligated stimulus funds to deliver assistance that Americans need right now."

Well Mr. Heller, you're wrong.  Unobligated or not, stimulus funds are borrowed monies and as such, that means that your bill is NOT 'fully funded.'  It's borrowed and thus adds to both the deficit and our national debt!  So, how is your proposed legislation any different than anything else?  If you want to claim something is fully funded, you need to identify a budgetary offset ... you know ... something in the actual budget that you won't fund so you can instead use those funds for your bill.  That's what we ordinary Americans have to do. We give up something for Peter to pay Paul.   Your proposed bill does absolutely nothing to reduce this nation's deficit spending.  Unobligated stimulus funds should be returned to China or Japan, whichever one we borrowed them from this time.

5 comments:

Desert Beacon said...

you nailed it

Chuck B said...

Your view that during a recession gold prices drop is not even close to true. I am sure if you look up gold prices you will see that they have been on a steady rise for the last 3 years. As an economics major I find your reasoning to be a little skewed. Your idiom regarding Peter and Paul historically reads...."We rob Peter to pay Paul" Truth be told, Americans today are being robbed of their future Social Security payouts. As this country borrows tremendous amounts of money the interest on these loans increases exponentially. In 15 years we as a nation debt or no debt will still be paying the interest on these loans. Heller wants to use unused stimulus money to fund the programs stated. The stimulus funds have already been put in this countries pockets. He is not advocating more loans from foreign sources. He is asking the administration to use the money already borrowed to help with services required by people unemployed or facing unemployment in the near future. You say "Nevada's leadership is the sole owner of our economy and its woes." I take it you are referring to Harry Reid as he is considered by many to be one of Nevadas leaders. I think based on your Peter/Paul statement you are advocating a Pay As You Go plan. Have you sent a letter to Mr. Reid telling him to send back the unused stimulus monies? I have in fact sent him letters asking for that. I get no reply, so I take it Reid is more for the continued robbing of Peter to pay Paul. Do us a favor and google that idiom and see what it's true meaning is before twisting it into a slanted piece of rhetoric.

RockSpot said...

1) I did not mean to imply that gold is always down during a recession. Gold prices have been up of late, but they are a boom and bust industry.
2) I believe the idiom of Peter/Paul is appropriately used in my post: If you rob Peter to pay Paul, you try to solve one problem, but create another in doing so, often through short-term planning. For example, when family planning gets really tight, they will typically not pay one bill to be able to pay another which only creates a greater problem in subsequent months. But, sometimes, that's the only way they can get by when they're massively affected by a recession such as this.
3) I not only believe in Pay as You Go, I believe in operating from a balanced budget and I believe in saving back a certain percentage of income for "rainy days."
4) Harry Reid is elected to a federal office and as such represents NV at the Federal level. He doesn't administer the state budget, nor does he make decisions at the state government level as to how state programs are implemented.
5) As to Social Security ... well, that's whole 'nother blog post I'll get around to one of these days.

RockSpot said...

Here's a link to an article that makes my point: http://voices.washingtonpost.com/ezra-klein/2010/06/unemployment_not_budget_practi.html?wprss=ezra-klein

Because Nevada's economy has such an over-reliance on tourism ... whenever a recession looms, unemployment rises, and our fiscal situation becomes problematic.

DEANBERRY said...

BARRICK GOLD ELKO, NEVADA, IS AIDING AND ABETTING TERRORISM. Why has Elko, Nevada completely dumped its loyalty to America? In patronizing Barrick Gold you’re enriching Adnan Khashoggi who was involved in the Iran/Contra affair and who is a major supporter of Al Qaida?*

Elko rednecks scream the loudest about avenging 9/11 yet prostrate yourselves to its main financier. Do you feel no shame? I’m calling for you all to be rounded up under the Detainee Security Act (that Dean Heller voted for) for aiding and abetting terrorism.

At the very least, why hasn't Barrick been confiscated by the U.S. government for complicity in terrorism?

http://tinyurl.com/BarrickGoldNevadaFinanced911

* Oh, G Wimp Bush, by the way, is on the board of Barrick. Do you see how inbred both the "left" and the "right" are? How much they actually have in common.