Chris Edwards

Obama's Spending Freeze

President Obama is apparently planning to freeze a portion of federal spending for three years. The portion to be frozen is discretionary spending less spending on defense, homeland security, and veteran’s affairs. That portion of spending–about 13 percent of the overall budget–would be held to $447 billion between FY2010 and FY2012.

2,000 Federal Subsidy Programs

January 22, 2010 is a day that should live in infamy, at least among believers in limited government. On that day, the federal government added its 2,000th subsidy program for individuals, businesses, or state and local governments.

Federal Salaries Explode

That’s the title of a USA Today analysis, which reveals an outrageous increase in salaries at the top levels of the federal workforce. I’ve been complaining about excessive federal pay for some time based on one set of data, and now Dennis Cauchon provides strong support for my thesis using a different set of data.

Cost Overruns: It's the Same in Britain

The Taxpayers’ Alliance has published a new study examining a sample of 240 government capital projects in Britain, including weapons systems, highway projects, computer upgrades, health care spending, and other items. The results mirror the serious cost overrun problems we have in the U.S. federal government.

Government of Continual Failure

The Washington Post is full of so many stories about government failure these days, it’s hard to keep up.

Today, on page A19 we learn about a Small Business Administration subsidy program that has a 60-percent default rate. On the same page, we learn that the U.S. Postal Service will lose $7 billion this year.

Federal Pay Freeze...in Britain

With the government running huge deficits and average family incomes stagnating in the recession, it is unseemly that federal worker pay continues to soar. I’ve called for an immediate freeze to federal worker pay, at least until the economy recovers and private worker pay starts catching up.

Families vs. Milk Farmers

Regulation and taxes are like two blades on a pair of scissors cutting holes in the family budget. With dairy products, a federal regulatory cartel acts to keep the prices of milk, cheese, and related products artificially high.

Congress Helps Itself

”Congress is on the verge of giving itself a bump in its annual budget — even as local governments, families and businesses across the country are tightening their belts in the worst recession in decades,” Politico reports.

ACORN Scandal Should Spur Broader Cuts

Republicans are all over the ACORN scandal and calling for an end to federal subsidies for the group. That would be a good step, but it’s not exactly going out on a limb and pushing for major budget reforms.

Congressional Conflict of Interest

It looks like farm subsidy reform is unlikely for another few years. Senator Blanche Lincoln has been selected the new head of the Senate Agriculture Committee. Dow Jones notes: “Lincoln is a two-term moderate Democrat who described herself Wednesday as a ‘farmer’s daughter.’”

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