This just in from Lindsey Graham:
Graham Named ‘Fiscal Hero’ For Work To Address National Debt
WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) was named a ‘Fiscal Hero’ by the Campaign to Fix the Debt for his work during the 114th Congress to improve the nation’s fiscal future and address the core drivers of the national debt.
“Senator Graham has worked through a variety of channels to draw attention and find solutions to the nation’s fiscal challenges,” said Maya MacGuineas, Head of the Campaign to Fix the Debt. “While many lawmakers have chosen to bury their heads when it comes to these issues, Senator Graham has shown courage and leadership and has been willing to stand up for what is right for the country – even when it’s not easy to do so.”
“The longer we wait, the more severe and difficult the choices will be to fix the debt,” MacGuineas continued. “Yet very few Members of Congress take this problem seriously. Those who do, like Senator Graham, deserve our thanks and praise.”
Honorees included 26 members of the House and 21 Senators from both parties, covering a range of political views.
To be named a Fiscal Hero, lawmakers distinguished themselves by casting fiscally responsible votes; pushing their party leaders to make addressing the debt a priority; leading bipartisan policy efforts; and engaging and educating constituents.
The Campaign to Fix the Debt is a nonpartisan movement to put America on a better fiscal and economic path. More information on the group can be found on its website:http://www.fixthedebt.org/
The nice thing about this organization is that, unlike too many other groups these days, it is transparent about who is behind it.
Here’s the steering committee of Fix the Debt. Starting with Erskine Bowles and Alan Simpson themselves, the list includes such luminaries as Ed Rendell, Michael Bloomberg, Pete Domenici and Sam Nunn. I see a list like that and I think, I may not automatically agree with everything these guys come up with, but I’m certainly going to give it a respectful listen.
But these are just the kinds of folks that the great populist mass is rising up against these days, isn’t it?
So Lindsey Graham should be proud to have the praise of such a group, but it’s not going to do much to heal the divisions between him and the restive members of his base…
Also from among today’s releases, Graham has the president’s back on this:
I have to say, I’m also in favor of selling the Vietnamese more arms. The biggest objection to this is from China. Given how aggressive and unfriendly China has been in naval matters (specifically in the South China Sea) I’m fine to tell China to go take a walk, while we sell arms to the Vietnamese.
Maybe if China was playing a little more nicely, I might be inclined to give their objection some weight, but when they act like they’re acting, then I don’t mind waving off their objections.
I would also like it noted for the record that in this instance I’m supporting a foreign policy move of the Obama Administration.
How much would Vietnam have to spend on arms to make them capable of defending themselves against China? Current spending is $5B per year. China spends $161 billion.
Why don’t we just rent them our military? We have plenty of excess capacity.
Actually, we don’t have excess capacity….
Yeah, Vietnam would have to spend a lot to get on par with China. I’m not sure what you point is, though.
My point is that China’s objection doesn’t really carry much water with me since they’re giving us all sorts of grief in the South China Sea.
I don’t think renting military hardware is a great idea. I mean, after it’s been in a battle, the military hardware ain’t exactly in tip-top shape.
Can you imagine if you went to a rental car company and told them: “Yeah, I need a Honda Civic. It will be some light driving from here to Atlanta. I may stop off and engage in some small arms fire against the local militia groups though. We may take some hits from their close air support, but I’m hoping to avoid that. Where’s my damage waiver?” 🙂
Not rent the hardware, rent the service. We can be the Uber of missiles and aircraft carriers.
Vietnam feels threatened? Fire up the MERICA app and select the level of response required. In case we are fighting other wars on multiple fronts, surge pricing will be in effect. No cash on hand? We’ll accept knock off Louis Vuitton bags made by 11 year olds.
“I understand Vietnam’s human rights record is well short of international standards and know there is more that they must do on this front.”
But I am apparently unwilling to tie the sale of weapons to specific actions that would save lives and protect children from slave labor. But I’ll feel REALLY bad about it right up until General Dynamics drops the bag of money on my back porch.
… and if you download and activate the MERICA app any time between this summer and November, we’ll throw in a free case of America beer.
Salary U.S. Senator: $174,000 per year.
Contributions from Defense Contractors to Lindsey Graham’s Campaign Committee and Leadership PAC
General Contractors $195,706
Defense Aerospace $186,793
General Contractors $208,206
Defense Aerospace $187,293
When the boss asks you to do something, you do it.
The “boss” is the guy who pays you money that you can buy beer with on the way home, and pay for your premium cable package on which you watch ball games while drinking the beer, all in the privacy of your home, the mortgage of which is also paid with that money.
People who give you money with which to pay political consultants and buy TV air time are not the boss. They’re just necessary evils you have to call on the phone in order to stay in office so you can collect that $174,000 from your real bosses….
Two more points:
— This one is critical… Do you think Lindsey would not have been for this anyway? I see every indication that he would be. And yeah, contributors tend to give to people they agree with. That’s kind of the way it’s supposed to work.
— Is it clear to you that all the contributors in those categories would benefit from this trade with Vietnam? Probably some would, but are we going to be selling them “aerospace” products? I don’t know… Maybe.
If he’s already on their side, why do they need to give him money? Seems like it would be a better investment to politicians who are on the fence.
Quid pro quo. Latin for “get rich or die trying”.
We should just sell them old Hueys, if we can find some that still fly. THAT would freak them out…
“but are we going to be selling them “aerospace” products? I don’t know… Maybe.”
I bet they would love to buy some helicopters from us. A few dozen Apaches, some Seahawks (for ASW), Blackhawks, some Cobras, and you’d be good to go.
By the way, to link this thread up with the other one, I bet the Native Americans think it’s pretty bad-ass that when the US Army was looking for a name for one of the most feared attack helicopters ever, they went with Apache. Here’s a good piece about the history of the naming.
Apparently the Fiscal Hero award is the equivalent of the participation trophy in youth sports. You don’t have to actually accomplish anything. Just show up, run around, and you get a trophy.
What would you call someone who actually did something about the debt?
I’m making growing hair in 2016 a priority. I’m going to talk about it. I’m going to be a champion for it. I hope to see a full head of hair by January.
I spent two days last week in Los Angeles teaching at a university. My two primary contacts were Vietnamese boat people who escaped as teenagers in the late 70’s on small boats that landed in Malaysia, leaving their parents behind. The story of their escape was incredible – six days with 50+ people on a small boat. But it was their attitude that was even more amazing – both guys said that even though it was a horrific experience it taught them that they could persevere regardless of the circumstances. One of them entered high school at age 16 with zero English skills and graduated two years later. I guess he was just “lucky”.
No, he was a guy with the grit and determination to come to America, despite all the odds, and build a new life for himself.
You know, like a lot of those Mexicans and Central Americans who risk their lives and yes, even break the immigration laws, to come here and work hard at opportunities they don’t have at home…
You lost me at breaking the law. There’s a big difference. Because breaking the immigration laws is just first of many for them.
And there was no “press 3 for Vietnamese” expectation. If you’ve been in the U.S. for more than five years, you should speak English.
The difference is in the attitude. It was clear to me.
They must be billionaires.