Cleanup of Sandy expected to add billions to the national debt

Thursday, November 01, 2012 by: J. D. Heyes
Tags: superstorm Sandy, national debt, cleanup

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(NaturalNews) Well, it didn't take long after Hurricane Sandy passed into history as the largest storm of its kind in several generations for someone in Washington to call for billions in new federal spending to compensate for its damage - billions that will, of course, be added to the trillions of dollars in debt the nation already owes.

Rep. Chaka Fatah, D-Pa., says he will introduce a bill to provide $12 billion in new funding to the Federal Emergency Management Agency, to help it deal with Sandy's aftermath, so he says.

Congress never seems to miss an opportunity to spend money the government simply doesn't have. Fatah even went so far as to say that the additional spending shouldn't have to be offset by budget cuts elsewhere or new revenue because, you know, the country has deficit-spent for disasters before (of course, what he fails to mention is that the country wasn't $16-plus trillion in debt then).

"The American people deserve, and insist on, the kind of first-rate recovery response that FEMA can provide," Fatah said, pretending to speak for We the People. "But we cannot do it on the cheap. Congress must step up and provide the federal resources this emergency requires."

Congress, mind you, has done nothing "on the cheap" in recent years. In fact, the true deficit far surpasses the $16 trillion "official" mark.

Little federal disaster 'relief' prior to FDR

"The true present value of future obligations is $222 trillion," says writes Laurence Kotlikoff, professor of economics at Boston University. "This is $700,000 per person. This is $1.9 million per household. This is what you currently owe. Do you feel better?"

Fatah's position is that the American people now - and our children and grandchildren for generations to come - should be enslaved by the level of debt additional spending on Sandy will worsen.

Moreover, the congressman's assertion that the government has always provided such disaster relief is off the mark. Prior to the 1930s and FDR, federal responses to disasters were minimal, to say the least.

Socialist policies established under FDR at the time led to the creation of the Reconstruction Finance Corporation, which issued loans for disaster relief, as the Bureau of Public Road was given authority to provide money for highways and bridges damaged by natural disasters.

Three decades later, in 1974, Congress passed the Disaster Relief Act, which established the process of presidential disaster declarations and additional federal intervention.

"The federal effort was further enlarged and centralized under President Jimmy Carter after he issued an executive order in 1979 creating the Federal Emergency Management Agency, or FEMA," InfoWars said.

Just borrow it

The site went on to point out that most of FEMA's funding actually goes to black ops. "A 1992 study by the Cox Newspapers Group found that during 1982-1992 FEMA's budgets included only $243 million for disaster relief but $2.9 billion for black ops," the website reported.

Either way - whether Fatah knows this or not - what he is advocating is that the federal government simply print another $12 billion, or borrow it from governments like China, to throw down the black hole of another federal agency that some say should receive more oversight scrutiny, especially if it gets additional money related to Sandy.

Not only that, as CNSNews pointed out, any new spending would violate budgetary caps put in place by Congress in the Budget Control Act (BCA) of 2011, though there are provisions in that legislation that allow for spending on natural disasters.

"If the funding is approved without offsets, it would almost certainly have to be borrowed because the government currently runs a large cash deficit, meaning that the $12 billion Fattah proposes would have to be added to the national debt of $16 trillion," CNSNews reported.


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