Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Obituaries

Former New Hampshire senator Warren B. Rudman, 82, died last night.

He was a little bit too neolib for my tastes regarding the federal budget, but there were and are much worse senators out there.

Throughout his Senate career, Rudman was cited for his work on the Defense Appropriations subcommittee, where he supported a strong national defense but opposed expensive, high-tech weaponry.

The Gramm-Rudman-Hollings Act was approved in 1985. It was designed to end federal deficits by 1991 and required automatic spending cuts if annual deficit targets were missed.

Congress rolled back the timetable each year, and the 1991 budget that was supposed to be balanced carried the second-highest deficit in history. In 1995, 10 years after the law went on the books, Rudman lamented what could have been.

"Had we stuck to that plan, had the Congress not failed to follow it through - in fact, had presidents not failed to follow through - we would not be where we are today," Rudman said.

Of course federal governments can't go broke anyway by definition, so it was a bunch of nonsense. Balancing budgets aren't that big a deal.

We also know that without a single Republican vote, Bill Clinton put in some tax increases and then--voila!!--the budget was balanced by the time he left office.
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Billy Scott, R&B singer, 70, has died from pancreatic and liver cancer.
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