Wintery Knight

…integrating Christian faith and knowledge in the public square

Obama administration to release hundreds of illegal immigrants detained by ICE

I don’t mean regular illegal immigrants, I mean real criminals that were being held by Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Fox News reports.

Excerpt:

The Department of Homeland Security has started releasing hundreds of illegal immigrants held in local jails in anticipation of automatic budget cuts, in a move one Arizona sheriff called politically motivated — and dangerous.

Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu said Tuesday that Immigration and Customs Enforcement released more than 500 detainees in his county alone over the weekend. A spokesman for Babeu told FoxNews.com that ICE officials have said they plan to release a total of nearly 10,000 illegal immigrants.

The numbers, though, are in dispute. ICE officials said that it’s unclear how many ultimately might be released and that only 303 have been released from four Arizona facilities so far, though all those are in Pinal County. According to ICE, 2,280 detainees are still in custody in those facilities.

Babeu described the move as a “mass budget pardon” and suggested the administration was going to unnecessary lengths to demonstrate the impact of the so-called sequester.

“President Obama would never release 500 criminal illegals to the streets of his hometown, yet he has no problem with releasing them in Arizona. The safety of the public is threatened and the rule of law discarded as a political tactic in this sequester battle,” he said.

An ICE spokeswoman confirmed the plans without specifying how many illegal immigrants might be released.

[...]In Arizona, Babeu slammed the move, painting his community as a victim of gridlock in Washington.

“Clearly, serious criminals are being released to the streets of our local communities by this mass budget pardon. These are illegals that even President Obama wants to deport. This is insane that public safety is sacrificed when it should be the budget priority that’s safeguarded,” he said.

This is Obama’s little tantrum. All the time in the last 5 years he has been mocking Republicans for being unreasonable about balancing spending cuts with job-killing tax increases on entrepreneurs and their employees. But the truth is that he would rather release criminals than cut one dime of federal spending. This is the real Obama. Wastrel, thief and spendthrift. I’m not surprised that he would resort to putting the citizens of Arizona at the mercy of criminals just to get revenge for being forced to cut a couple percent from his bloated spending. After all, this is the same administration that oversees the trafficking of assault weapons to Mexican drug cartels. He doesn’t care if law-abiding citizens gets murdered by  criminals.

Filed under: News, , , , , ,

GAO report finds that Obama’s massive spending is not sustainable

The Government Accountability Office is a federal government agency that audits the finances of the federal government. They report to Obama and they are part of his administration. So what do they think about his plans to fix the economy?

Take a look at this article from Breitbart.

Excerpt:

The Government Accountability Office (GAO)—the personal auditor of President Obama and the federal government—released its assessment of the federal government on January 17, 2013. The report’s findings illuminate just how dire America’s spending problem is and, therefore, how little the current cuts debated by Congress do to fix it.

The findings of the paper include these excerpts (emphasis added):

  • “The projections in this Report indicate that current policy is not sustainable… Preventing the debt-to-GDP ratio from rising over the next 75 years is estimated to require some combination of spending reductions and revenue increases that amount to 2.7 percent of GDP over the period.”
  • “It is estimated that running primary surpluses that average 1.0 percent of GDP over the next 75 years would result in the 2087 debt-to-GDP ratio equaling its level in fiscal year 2012, which compares with primary deficits that average 1.7 percent of GDP under current policies.”
  • “It is noteworthy that preventing the debt-to-GDP ratio from rising over the next 75 years requires that primary surpluses be substantially positive on average. This is true because projected GDP growth is on average smaller than the projected government borrowing rate over the next 75 years.”
  • “If the primary surplus was precisely zero in every year, then debt would grow at the rate of interest in every year, which would be faster than GDP growth.”
  • “The differences between the primary surplus boost starting in 2023 and 2033 (3.2 and 4.1 percent of GDP, respectively) and the primary surplus boost starting in 2012 (2.7 percent of GDP) is a measure of the additional burden policy delay would impose on future generations. Future generations are harmed by a policy delay of this sort, because the higher the primary surplus is during their lifetimes the greater the difference is between the taxes they pay and the programmatic spending from which they benefit.”

[...]This is the reality: when President Obama’s personal auditor says the federal government has a spending problem, it indeed has a spending problem—and one that is growing rapidly.

Something to think about during the debate on sequestration. We can’t stay on the course that we’re on. Things will not be OK.

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A primer on the fiscal cliff facing us in January 2013: tax hikes and Obamacare

This is a medium-length article from the Tax Foundation. I found it fascinating to read, because I am busy making plans myself to deal with the next four years under Barack Obama.

Excerpt:

On December 31, 2012, a large swath of the federal income tax code is scheduled to expire, an event which has come to be known as the “fiscal cliff.” Among the expiring provisions are the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts enacted under President Bush, a compromise on the estate tax, a “patch” in the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) reducing its impact, the temporary 2 percent payroll tax holiday, increased business expensing, and the “extenders” package of miscellaneous tax deductions. On January 1, 2013, five taxes enacted as part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA)—popularly referred to as Obamacare—also take effect, along with sequester spending reductions of $109 billion due to the failure of the “Supercommittee” to reach consensus on budget reductions.

In late February, the U.S. government will hit the debt ceiling, exhausting its ability to borrow to finance ongoing spending without an increase by Congress. Finally, the federal government’s continuing resolution appropriating spending expires on March 27, 2013.

Here are some of the things to look out for, which are all described in detail in the article:

  • 2001 and 2003 Tax Cuts Expiration
  • Estate Tax Increase
  • Alternative Minimum Tax
  • Payroll Tax Increase
  • Business Depreciation Expense
  • Taxes in PPACA (Obamacare)
  • Debt Ceiling
  • Sequestration

I am most concerned about income tax increase, the capital gains tax increase, the dividend tax increase and the payroll tax increase. These are all going to clobber me. I will have less money for charity and savings, and will have to retire later – and have less time for my Christian activities as a result of having to work longer. The voters in the last election have decided that I must sacrifice more of my earnings so that Obama can hand it all out to his constituents in exchange for their votes.

It helps to know exactly what will be changing in the future, because I have to know how to respond to this. Some adjustments that I might make cannot be done at the drop of a hat. Some take months to plan and execute. It’s best to think about things in advance. We have two deadlines: December 31st and March 27th. It will be interesting to see  what Washington decides to do.

UPDATE: James Pethokoukis of AEI explains the significance of the tax increases for capital gains and dividends. Other countries have lower rates on these taxes, so expect the capital that funds businesses and creates jobs to leave the country. Obama likes to rail against outsourcing, but he actually causes it – because of his ignorance.

Filed under: News, , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Obama administration warns contractors to delay layoffs to after election

This is currently the top story at Fox News.

Excerpt:

The Obama administration has doubled down on its plea to defense contractors not to warn employees about possible layoffs due to looming budget cuts —  going so far as to offer to cover legal fees in compensation challenges.

The move drew a stern rebuke Friday from South Dakota Republican Sen. John Thune, since federal law requires employers to give notice if mass layoffs are likely.

“For the second time, the Obama administration has now encouraged government contractors to ignore the WARN Act and hold off on warning employees about possible layoffs due to the looming sequestration cuts,” Thune, lead author of the Sequestration Transparency Act, said Friday.

The offer to pay the legal fees was included in a memorandum issued by the administration Friday that also restated the Labor Department’s position from July that contractors should not issue written notices to employees because of the “uncertainty” over the across-the-board cuts to the defense budget and other federal spending that will occur Jan. 2 unless Congress reaches a new deal.

The notices are required under the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act and generally require employers with more than 100 employees to provide 60-day notices of “mass layoffs if they are reasonably foreseeable.”

[...]Rep. John Kline, chairman of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, suggested last week that the Labor Department is trying to conceal the full impact of the cuts.

“The Labor Department is trying to hide the consequences of sequestration from workers,” Kline, R-Minn., said in a letter to Labor Secretary Hilda Solis.

So the administration is more concerned about being re-elected than with the cuts to an already weakened defense industry.  The focus is always on rhetoric and perception with these Democrats, never on substance and doing what’s right.

Filed under: News, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Congressman Allen West gives the Republican weekly radio address

It’s about time that Allen West be allowed to give the official GOP weekly radio address. His topic is the automatic spending cuts to the defense budget that are scheduled to occur soon.

Description:

In this week’s address, Congressman Allen West, a Retired U.S. Army Lieutenant Colonel, discusses the deadline for the sequester, and the White House’s devastating inaction on what was originally their idea. The Republican-led House has proposed responsible replacements to the sequester’s historically crippling across-the-board cuts to our nation’s military. The recent vicious attacks on embassies in the Middle East underscore the need to preserve our military strength. The president and Senate Democrats must put aside partisan politics to work with us to preserve our military and replace the sequester.

For those who can’t see the video, here is a report from the radically leftist CNN:

Rep. Allen West of Florida cited his military experience on Saturday in the Republican weekly address, where he called for action from the Senate and White House on the sequester set to begin in January.

“I spent 22 years in active duty in the United States Army and served in several combat zones,” the retired lieutenant colonel said. “I can not understate the amount of damage these cuts would do to our military. They would essentially hollow out our armed forces.”

“Mr. President, for you, the Commander in Chief of our armed forces, to sit idle and do nothing while this dark cloud hangs over our military – it is shameful, it is irresponsible, and it is wrong,” he said.

Included in the cuts – which would reduce the federal deficit by approximately $1 trillion over the next decade – are reductions in defense spending, as well as nearly every other area. On Friday, a White House report found the cuts “would have a devastating impact on important defense and nondefense programs.”

While House Republicans have acted to find alternatives to these cuts, the Democrat-controlled Senate and White House have not, he said.

“The president himself has opposed or disregarded every attempt we’ve made to work with him on a solution,” West said. “Dodging his responsibility is how the ‘sequester’ came about, so it is no surprise the president is doing the exact same thing now.”

West called to mind violence in the Arab world this week – including that which led to the death of four Americans at a U.S. consulate in Libya – as a sign of “how critical it is that the United States projects strength,” including military strength.

“It is because of these threats that America must continue to fund its military and support its armed forces to the fullest extent,” West said. “The lives of all Americans depend on it, as do the memories of Ambassador Chris Stevens and the public servants who perished with him.”

West says this in his address: “Mr. President: for you — the Commander-in-Chief of our Armed Forces — to sit idle and do nothing while this dark cloud hangs over our military, it is shameful, it is irresponsible, and it is wrong. It is dead wrong.”

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