Streetwise Professor

July 27, 2010

If Only He Were So Passionate About OUR Money

Filed under: Politics — The Professor @ 7:19 pm

Barney Frank threw a fit when he was refused a senior discount.  For $1.  Yes.  A meltdown over O-N-E dollar:

Massachusetts Congressman Barney Frank caused a scene when he demanded a $1 senior discount on his ferry fare to Fire Island . . . . Frank was turned down by ticket clerks at the dock in Sayville because he didn’t have the required Suffolk County Senior Citizens ID. A witness reports, “Frank made such a drama over the senior rate that I contemplated offering him the dollar to cool down the situation.”

So here we have a guy who is notoriously liberal with other people’s money having a hissy over a buck.  An alleged man of the people giving a poor clerk a hard time because he can’t follow the rules.

Would it be too much to ask Frank to show the same miserly attitude about other people’s money as he apparently does with his own?

We all know the answer to that, don’t we?

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  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Craig pirrong, Craig pirrong. Craig pirrong said: Updated my SWP blog post: If Only He Were So Passionate About OUR Money ( ) […]

    Pingback by Tweets that mention Streetwise Professor » If Only He Were So Passionate About OUR Money -- — July 27, 2010 @ 7:28 pm

  2. In my youth during the Cold War, I too thought that Democrats were too loose with taxpayers money and republicans – frugal. But then the Soviet Union crumbled, the arms race was over, the “peace dividend” was supposed to kick in… and it didn’t. The American military spending went up again. And to convince the taxpayers to continue to waste our money on the military lobby, the US politicians have been busily provoking Russia into a new Cold War for the last 15 years, starting with NATO’s Drang Nach Osten in mid-1990s and continuing with the rape of Yugoslavia and the establishment of die Neue Weltordnung.

    USA is now spending more on various military “needs” than the rest of the World combined. That’s right: when USA will wage a war on the entire World, we shall win! But do we need to? Do we need to waste $700 billion per year in hard-earned taxpayers’ money on warmongering, when $200 billion would be more than enough? Wouldn’t it be cheaper for us, taxpayers, just to pay out, say, a ransom of $100 billion to the various military-industrial complex shareholders and lobbyists and deposit another $50 billion into the re-election and personal accounts of our congressmen who are on the payroll of the military-industrial lobby, and keep the difference? Just as it would have been cheaper to pay out, say, $30 billion in ransom to the Big Oil instead of invading Iraq for their sake.

    Yes, Democrats may be “wasting” tens of billions on dollars on various “welfare” projects for the poor, but the Republicans are wasting hundreds of billions on the welfare for the rich. Wall Street bailout, of course, is a “welfare for the filthy rich” project that both Republicans and Democrats finally agree on.

    When everything else fails with your electrical gadgets, read the instructions. When everything else fails with your elected politicians, maybe you may consider electing libertarians?

    Comment by Ostap Bender — July 28, 2010 @ 5:48 am

  3. Ostap-

    Your understanding of our military budget seems to be seriously lacking. The $200 billion you propose for our defense needs would not even come close to maintaining our military capabilities. What you fail to recognize if that the U.S. military is not only a highly professional force, it is a also highly paid force. The U.S. spends far more on salaries, housing, benefits, health care and retirement benefits than it does on weapons procurement (approx 60% of the base budget goes for personnel expenses and benefits). Your proposed $200 billion defense budget wouldn’t even pay salaries and current benefits. The 2011 defense budget allocates and additional $122 billion just for veterans benefits (this is above and beyond the cost of active duty personnel).

    One of the reasons the U.S. military doesn’t suffer from many of the problems The Professor points out is that a well paid, professional military, while expensive to maintain, acts like a well paid, professional military.

    Hence, before we “consider electing libertarians” we might first want to stop listening to those libertarians who lack a basic understanding of some of the fundamental elements of our government, our society and our national budget.

    Comment by Charles — July 28, 2010 @ 8:30 am

  4. Charles,

    Does the US really need 12 aircraft carrier groups?

    Comment by So? — July 29, 2010 @ 7:46 pm

  5. The funny thing with military overstretch is that either you curtail it voluntarily or reality eventually does it for you.

    The US can’t afford its current military budget. Simple as.

    Comment by Sublime Oblivion — July 31, 2010 @ 3:58 am

  6. Charles,

    What you don’t understand is that I favor deep cuts in the military personnel as well. We are virtually an “island nation” in the sense that we have only 2 land neighbors and neither has any desire to attack us. So, why do we need a large army? To fight wars of aggression all over the world? I am against that.

    How about troops abroad? Well, I suppose we should have troops in places like South Korea to defend it against you-know-whom. But in other places, like, say, Europe? What for? Who threatens to invade Europe? And why can’t the powerful European Union defend itself? England alone spends more on defense than even Russia. So does France.

    Why does USA have to act as a self-proclaimed world policeman? Maybe instead of wasting money on weapons of death, we could give it back to the taxpayers, or if Washington can’t tolerate tax cuts, spend it on education and on teachers? Or better yet, reduce the budget deficit and the debt.

    Comment by Ostap Bender — July 31, 2010 @ 4:00 pm

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