"God forbid we should ever be twenty years without such a rebellion.
The people cannot be all, and always, well informed. The part which is
wrong will be discontented, in proportion to the importance of the facts
they misconceive. If they remain quiet under such misconceptions,
it is lethargy, the forerunner of death to the public liberty. ...
And what country can preserve its liberties, if its rulers are not
warned from time to time, that this people preserve the spirit of
resistance? Let them take arms. The remedy is to set them right as
to the facts, pardon and pacify them. What signify a few lives lost
in a century or two? The tree of liberty must be refreshed from
time to time, with the blood of patriots and tyrants.
It is its natural manure." - Thomas Jefferson
Yesterday, I mentioned how the more power we cede to the government, the more corrupt that government becomes.
Today, I have a prime example of it with one of the latest government power grabs, known colloquially as ObamaCare. Contained in ObamaCare is a $5 billion slush fund (thanks, taxpayers !) known as the Early Retirement Reissuance Program (EERP), which is supposed to help companies pay the costs of health care for their early retirees. The Obama administration has already spent $1.7 billion of the money, and the recipients read like a list of Obama's biggest supporters and top campaign donors, with labor unions and deep-pocketed favored companies like General Electric and General Motors getting the money. The money isn't going to companies with a financial need, it's going to cronies. In other words, it's another giant taxpayer ripoff, coming to you courtesy of the Democrats. Six of the top ten recipients were labor unions.
Recipients of ERRP funding include the United Auto Workers union, which secured $206,798,086 in taxpayer money, AT&T, which took in $140,022,949, and General Electric (GE), which raked in $36,607,818. GE has made headlines recently for not paying any U.S. taxes last year. IBM got $12,989,690 in taxpayer money.
Verizon pulled $91,702,538 in taxpayer cash, too, and General Motors received $19,002,669. More than $6 million went to different Teamsters groups nationwide, and millions more went to the United Mine Workers, United Food and Commercial Workers, the AFL-CIO and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME).
Let's look a little closer at some of these ObamaCare ERRP recipients.
The most money, nearly $207 million, went to the United Auto Workers, who already got a $3.4 billion sweetheart deal from Obama's General Motors bailout. GM itself, which was previously bailed out by the taxpayers to the tune of $50 billion, just got $19 million more from the taxpayers via ERRP. GM recently announced a 2010 profit of $4.7 billion, but somehow they still needed the taxpayers to cover that $19 million for ERRP. Thanks, Obama. In related news, the sales of Obama's favorite car, the GM Chevy Volt, stink (what a shocker), and GM is looking for yet another government handout to assist with that in addition to the government handout they already got for the Volt, a $7,500 tax credit per vehicle.
That struggling small business startup company known as AT&T was the second biggest ERRP recipient, raking in a little over $140 million for it's $15.4 million in lobbying efforts in 2010. I'm sure AT&T needed that money from the taxpayers, seeing as how AT&T only made a little over $19.8 billion in net profits in 2010, and only around $55.5 billion over the last four years. You may not know it, but AT&T is the biggest political campaign donor since 1990. They work hard for their taxpayer cash.
President Obama's buddies at General Electric got over $36 million in ERRP funding from the taxpayers. As I mentioned yesterday, GE made $14 billion in profit in 2010 and paid no income taxes on that money. GE was a top Obama campaign donor during the 2008 election, coughing up nearly $500 million in campaign cash for our ethical President with the change you can believe in. Clearly, that was money well spent by GE. You may remember that the government (that's the taxpayers again) guaranteed $340 billion of the debt of GE's financial services arm a couple years ago.
Verizon was the third largest ERRP recipient, getting a little over $91 million in taxpayer cash. Verizon spent $16.75 million lobbying our politicians in Washington D.C. in 2010. Verizon clearly needed it's $91 million in taxpayer ERRP cash, because Verizon's $106.6 billion in 2010 revenues only generated net cash just north of $33 billion.
See how this works ? Government takes over a segment of our society, in this case health care, and then government gives preferential treatment to it's friends at taxpayer expense. That's how it's supposed to work, right ? The government is supposed to be for sale to the highest bidder, right ? Isn't that how every banana republic operates ? The government is supposed to treat the taxpayers like it's personal ATM, and hand out taxpayer cash like candy to it's rich cronies, right ? And we're supposed to bend over and take it up the tailpipe every time we turn around, right ? We're even supposed to listen to one political party tell us that the resultant $14 trillion in debt and $1.6 trillion in annual deficit is no big deal, as they keep right on bending us over and extracting more cash from us and our children, because it will help the bottom line of Obama's jobs advisor Jeff Immelt, who heads up GE.
No, I don't think so. This is so sick and twisted, and it has to stop, by any...means...necessary. The government's corruption is right out in the open for all to see. Thomas Jefferson is starting to make a whole lot of sense to me right now.
Oh, and guess what else. That $5 billion slush fund that Obama and company are handing out like candy to their rich friends was supposed to last until 2014, but at the current rate of expenditures, it will run out in 2012. Then the Obamas will no doubt come back for more. Bend over, America ! Here it comes again ! Feel the CHANGE !!! That didn't hurt too awful much, did it ? Quit cryin', ya baby ! Who's your daddy now ??? Let me hear you say it...O-bam-a, O-bam-a, O-bam-a....
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