September 18, 2014
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My Take On The News
Langevin alone has courage to question Obama’s budget
Lonnie Barham

DEBT ON ARRIVAL: Congressional Republicans aptly named President Obama’s 2013 budget proposal “Debt on Arrival.” Republicans rightly consider it little more than a campaign document meant to show Obama intends to satisfy his core constituents by spending himself into a second term – and increasing our national debt even more. Three years ago Obama promised America that he would cut the U.S. deficit in half by the end of his first term. Another promise broken! Obama missed his mark by over a trillion dollars. Rather than reducing the deficit, he has increased it. Although his budget proposal increases taxes by $1.5 trillion and cuts defense spending tremendously, he still can’t come close to fulfilling his promise. Why? Because the budget also includes so much new spending! He is truly living up to his description as a tax and spend liberal. With his budget proposal putting us so much further in debt, his “Debt on Arrival” budget should truly become “dead on arrival” in Congress.

LANGEVIN COURAGE: Of Rhode Island’s four-member congressional delegation, only Congressman James Langevin had the courage to speak the truth about President Obama’s proposed 2013 budget. Langevin alone took the position that Obama’s budget does not sufficiently address the burgeoning cost of our massive entitlement programs, Social Security and Medicare. Messrs Reed, Whitehouse and Cicilline all took the politically expedient, Democrat position that our country should continue its descent into bankruptcy – especially the bankruptcy of our children and grandchildren who will pay the price for our cowardly refusal to address the unfunded $45 trillion projected cost of these entitlement programs. Thank you, Congressman Langevin, for being the only member of our delegation with the courage to speak the truth!

KUDOS TO UNITED WAY: Doing exactly as our nation’s history and culture has always promoted, United Way has stepped up to the plate and released $1 million to its “Weathering the Storm Fund,” a fund that provides financially troubled Rhode Islanders with basic-needs assistance. This non-government, donations-based assistance reflects the “neighbor helping neighbor” philosophy our country was built on, and the philosophy on which our country will depend if it hopes to eventually return to financial and moral solvency. Instead of people depending on government handouts for survival, it’s neighbors providing a helping hand that will lead us to prosperity and self-reliance. Thanks, United Way, for setting the example and showing us the way.

OUR BUSTED IMMIGRATION SYSTEM: A Muslim man was arrested in Washington, D.C. after plotting to blow up the U.S. Capitol Building. The man’s visitor’s visa had expired in 1999, yet he did not come to law enforcement’s attention until his landlord reported suspicious behavior to the FBI in 2010. How screwed up is our immigration tracking system when a “visitor” from an Islamic country can remain in our country illegally for a dozen years without immigration authorities taking any action? If we can’t track and deport those we know for certain are in the U.S. illegally, how in the world can we ever hope to do anything about unknown, illegal immigration? If a U.S. citizen’s key documents expire – driver’s license, car registration, etc., the government knows and can take immediate action. Yet we can’t track expiring visas? Something’s badly wrong here!

POLITI-TRUTH: In its Sunday PolitiFact article, the Providence Journal says Rep. Nicholas Kettle, who recently introduced a bill giving right to work status to teachers, was “mostly false” in his statement that, “If you look at states that are right to work, they constantly do not have budget deficits and they have very good business climates.” Most states have had budget deficits at some point, regardless of their right to work status. But, the article failed to recognize the importance of its own statistics – namely, that as of Jan. 9, 2012, 21.5 percent of states without right to work laws had current year deficits, while less than one-half percent of those states with right to work laws had deficits. And for the 2013 budget year, 75 percent of states without right to work privileges project deficits, while only 42 percent of states with right to work laws will face deficits. The article also disputes Kettle’s contention that states with right to work statutes have better business climates by saying, “We could not find any studies to prove Kettle’s claim that right to work laws lead directly to better business climate.” That’s not what Kettle said! Kettle did not attribute the better business climate directly to right to work laws. He said a right to work law would help Rhode Island tremendously “…along with other legislation that needs to occur to help out the business community.” Let’s face it, ProJo’s PolitiFact writers are so pro-union and anti-worker that their bias is reflected in their product, regardless of the objective statistics they uncover.

STOLEN VALOR ACT: Which is more important? Protecting the valor of millions of men and women who were decorated for military heroism and service, or protecting the freedoms guaranteed by our Constitution? President Obama is defending the Stolen Valor Act that makes it a federal crime to lie about one’s military service and awards received. Ironically, some veterans’ groups also support the Act even though they are the ones who fought to defend our constitutional freedoms – to include freedom of speech. Lying about military service and awards is a despicable act of cowardice; however, stopping it does not justify weakening freedom of speech. Millions of Americans went to war to protect the rights of such groups as the Westboro Baptist Church to spew venomous remarks near military funerals; they also were at war to protect the right of disturbed individuals to issue verbal falsehoods about their military service. As distasteful as it is to hear someone lie about his military service (ala RI Rep. Daniel Gordon), if we continue to weaken the freedoms outlined in the Constitution, there will be nothing left for our brave military to fight for.


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