RUSH: Would you all stand up, please? Stand up, please. Thank you. I have entered the room. When I enter the room, everybody stands up. Live from the office of America’s Anchorman, I am Rush Limbaugh, and this is the Excellence in Broadcasting Network, and today I give you my plans for the future of the country. Except there’s a big difference between myself and the President-
For the second day in a row, President-Select Obama starts a press conference right as this program begins. I don’t think, ladies and gentlemen, that there’s — sit down, please. Yes. As soon as I begin, of course, that’s the signal to sit down. When I appear, you stand, you rise; and as soon as I have assumed the position behind the microphone, you then sit down with due respect, listen to my BS and then ask me meaningless questions designed to make me look like I have a handle on everything going on when I really don’t know beans. I’m just farming it out to the team, giving them assignments to come up with things to do, and sound confident about it all. So that’s the procedure from now on here at the office, America’s Anchorage man. Again the telephone number, 800-282-2882 if you’d like to be on the program. E-mail address, ElRushbo@eibnet.com.
Somali pirates, aced out of their chance to buy into Citibank, have instead hijacked another vessel, a Yemeni cargo ship in the Gulf of Aden. ‘Andrew Mwangura, coordinator of the Kenya-based East African Seafarers’ Assistance Programme, identified the Yemeni vessel as the MV Amani. Few other details were immediately available.’ Who are these guys? The Somali pirates are just racking up score after score after score. I guess they’re burned up. I guess they’re angry here, obviously. They made a play for Citibank and they got aced out by the US government bailing it out. How about Robert Rubin? Why is Robert Rubin not fired? You know, for every one of us — well, I want to say every one of you, but I actually don’t mean you. I’m talking about the people in the country who are fed up with all these CEOs and these execs at say the Big Three or Big Oil or wherever they are. I mean, there are so many people in this country who have genuine hatred for corporations now, thanks to the Democrat Party and their class envy
How in the world do you justify having Robert Rubin around? The New York Post and the New York Times — the New York Times used to be Rubin’s personal PR machine. The New York Times today with a story on Rubin and how much money he’s made for doing nothing except screwing things up. It makes him cabinet material in the Obama administration, there’s no question about it. The halo is finally coming off. Robert Rubin is being caught out by the New York Times for having earned $107 million in fees for part-time work leading Citibank into this current morass that required this hundreds of billions of dollars in bailout money. He was the architect of this, and he was brought in there to save — his expertise, this is the guy that was so wonderful for the US economy and so forth. The New York Post today has a good expose. Robert Rubin, Citigroup special advisor, sat on the board at Citigroup from 1999 until this past August. He has a special contract with Citigroup that paid him more than $107 million, and he’s right there as a consultant and as an advisor, as Citigroup hits the skids with the stock price. Last I looked, it was hovering just below five dollars.
Why is nobody shouting for his head? Because he’s loved and adored inside the Beltway. He’s a DC Beltway hero to all of the media and leftist elites in that town. But, I mean, if you’re going to get mad at the auto CEOs and if you’re going to get mad at the Big Oil CEOs then by all means, ladies and gentlemen, feel free to let loose on some of these financial CEOs that are actually doing for their businesses what some of these other CEOs that everybody is outraged about have been doing for theirs. Now, listen to this. This is a fascinating story in the midst of all that’s going on, and as more people start paying attention to all of these bailout dollars — and that $7.4 trillion bailout number that I used yesterday, the debt that we’re going to have is now starting to circulate. It was a Bloomberg News story yesterday. It’s now starting to circulate. People are saying, ‘What? Where is this going to come from, $7.4 trillion?’ We’re talking a percentage of the national debt here, the federal budget deficit next year. Well, this fiscal year, 1.3 to $1.5 trillion. We’ve not been through anything like this since 1945.
So listen to this. It’s an AP-Obama story, but I don’t think the Obama division of AP actually proved this. Headline: ‘$846 Million of Katrina Aid is Unclaimed and Rents in New Orleans Have Risen Despite Federal Programs to Help Landlords — The four-unit shotgun house that Sandra Marshall bought after decades of double shifts has sat untouched since the flooding of Hurricane Katrina, while nearly $850 million in federal aid for her and thousands of other mom-and-pop landlords sits on a bureaucratic shelf.’ Congress just gave themselves $700 billion how many times now? I just watched Obama at the beginning of this press conference. He said he’s going to go through the budget line by line. That, by the way, is going to be very difficult to do. There are hundreds of thousands of lines in the budget, but he’s going to go through it line by line, and he’s going to strike out anything that is wasteful money. Whatever he finds that’s wasteful he’s just going to eliminate it. He’s just going to whack it.
Now, he’s going to have interesting times in Congress getting this done because here’s the one he cited he found this morning. He found that the federal government is paying farmers $49 billion in aggregate to not grow crops, you know, crop subsidy payments and so forth and so on. And he found out that some of these people getting the subsidy make two-and-a-half million dollars already, that they are not qualified. He’s going to wipe it out. Okay, now, that means that Obama is going to try to take a huge chunk out of the farm bill. Now, I want to see that play out in Washington. We have heard this before. Every time people start looking at crop subsidies and so forth, incoming administration, ‘Ah, we’re going to target that; we’re going to get rid of that,’ and then you get into Congress, where the people that are elected from these states, they see farmers and conglomerates have something to say about it.
But, at any rate, the point here is that if you’re looking for waste, and if you’re looking for evidence that government bailouts don’t work, you don’t have to go back in history very far, although you can and you can find example after example after example. All you have to do to see it is go to Hurricane Katrina. There’s $850 million in federal aid for mom-and-pop landlords who got really harmed by Hurricane Katrina, sits on a bureaucratic shelf, the landlords cannot get it and yet Congress just authorized themselves $700 billion for their crony buddies wherever their crony buddies happen to be. Sandra Marshall is 56. She says, ‘I have old tenants calling me all the time asking when I’m going to get the place back up and running. I wish I knew.’
‘She has applied for a repair loan from the nearly forgotten Louisiana Small Rental Property Program, created in the aftermath of Katrina to provide financial help to as many as 13,000 live-in owners of the shotgun and cottage conversions that kept rents cheap here for generations. So far, it has put money in the hands of only 352 landlords. The hurdles have been its flawed implementation, limited financial resources among applicants, and lately, the national credit crunch. Now, the state is seeking to overhaul the program and divert the funds.’ Divert ’em to what? Or to who? There’s $850 million that was designated — whether it makes sense or not is not the point now — $850 million designated for landlords and they’re not getting it, the hurdles for them to get it are insurmountable. ‘Housing advocates say the program’s failure–‘ this is a federal government program failure ‘–has contributed to a 40-percent spike in rents citywide,’ just like federal money raised the cost of college. Everything the government touches, the price goes up, and it’s now being evidenced in New Orleans.
Now, all of this has ‘forced the federal government to pour even more Band-Aid relief into the recovery, including a $28-million-a-month Disaster Housing Assistance Program that helps 31,000 families pay the inflated rents.’ So a program that was designed to help landlords get up and running and lower rents during the recovery after Katrina has done just the opposite. The money has not gone to the landlords. Rents have skyrocketed. So there’s now a federal program to help renters pay the higher rents. This was compassion. We’re gonna throw all this money at the Hurricane Katrina area survivors because we’re gonna help ’em out. ‘The failure of the small rental program is one reason why, three years after Katrina, many blue-collar New Orleans residents find themselves no longer able to afford life in their beloved hometown. It also illustrates how the billions of taxpayer dollars thrown at the hurricane recovery effort have yielded limited progress.’
Duh! Money thrown at anything yields limited progress. If you throw money at your kid you are going to see limited progress. You throw money away and you create the impression that more is going to be thrown your way, and you are going to yield limited progress. ‘The rental program was launched under former Gov. Kathleen Blanco as a companion to the $10.3 billion Road Home program, which has issued 120,000 rebuilding grants–‘ Look at all the garbage that people that live down there have to go through in order to try to rebuild the city. Every road takes you to a government building of some kind and then multiple rooms and doors inside the government building. Banks lack confidence in this program. Well, really? I wonder why. Now we all lack confidence in the banks. Where was their lack of confidence when they were giving mortgages to people who couldn’t pay? If they were giving mortgages to people who couldn’t pay, why are they worried now about helping people that can’t pay? Folks, this is absurd. This is just flat-out ridiculous, and here’s the evidence. All these bailouts — and this story goes on for another two pages. We will link to it at RushLimbaugh.com.
Hurricane Katrina is just one example of the absolute nightmare that’s created by this, and it is done by design. This is called maximizing crisis opportunity. When the feds get involved maximizing crisis opportunity, they build layer upon layer upon layer of bureaucracy, it becomes so complicated that you can’t dismantle it, it doesn’t work, and so the cycle repeats. Members of Congress say, ‘Well, we need more money. We’re underfunded here.’ Now, go to audio sound bite number five quickly before we go to the break here. Last night on Hardball, we had Mike Barnicle sitting in there, he’s a talking to Jim Moran, the genius member of Congress from Virginia. Barnicle said, ‘Jim, I’m a taxpayer, I’m scared. I can’t stand looking at headlines every day. Tell me why all these billions in bailouts is a good thing and tell me that my money given to you, the federal government, will work the way you think it will work.’
MORAN: I think it’s very hard to justify it, until the economy comes back, but I think we have to justify this and what troubles me the most is that we’re never going to pay this money back if these equities and liabilities don’t improve in value, we’re doing this all on our kids’ credit card and of course the holder, the servicer of that credit card is China, Inc., and other foreign nations. You know, we’re in a precarious position here, and I just hope that it works out.
RUSH: Well, that’s really inspiring, isn’t it, Congressman. A big liberal who believes in all this kind of stuff crosses his fingers and says, ‘I hope it works out.’ You contrast that with the president-select, Barack Obama, who comes across as confident and certain and sure that everything is going to be just fine, although it’s going to be hurtful, it’s going to be fraught with pain for a couple years. But that’s by design, too. Pardon me for being cynical. But if you’re sitting there as Barack Obama, and you know you’ve got a troubled economy heading your way and you’re going to be running it, you give yourself two years and you turn it around, you want it to start turning around two years from now, not now. Two years from now is when you start your reelection effort. The economy is a back pocket issue, it matters a lot on reelections, more elections, period. So you make sure that this economy sort of chugs along showing some signs, but then, wammo, there’s the next day, just like I said yesterday. And then all of a sudden you do what you can to goose it, starting in 2010. You might suffer some losses in the House and Senate in the midterm elections, but you figure the Republicans, they got nobody out there that can run that wants to run that can win so you say to hell with that. You say I’ll start getting the economy in gear here in 2010 so we’re showing a little bit of an uptick and growth as we head into my reelection. It’s called the Rahm Emanuel School of Expert Crisis Exploitation.
RUSH: Look at this, folks. Associated Press-Obama: ‘The potential cost for the government’s efforts to contain the financial crisis–‘ In my estimation, that’s not the the financial crisis. The financial crisis is what is being done to fix it. Six trillion dollars! This according to AP-Obama. According to Bloomberg yesterday it was $7.4 trillion. Folks, the potential cost for the government’s efforts to contain the ‘financial crisis’ now tops $6 trillion. That means, the way I interpret this, we have pumped six trillion into somewhere, and it hasn’t mattered, has it? Unemployment goes up. It’s not as bad — Thomas Sowell has a great piece on this today — it’s not as bad as everybody is making it out to be. It’s not the Great Depression, it’s nowhere close to it, but they got everybody thinking it is, and in politics perception is reality. So we gotta deal with the fact that most Americans think that we’ve already gone to hell, and all they’ve got is the handbasket that took us there, and of course Obama is the savior that’s going to bring us out of hell. But I tell you, $6 trillion, that’s the financial crisis itself, because we don’t have this money and we’re allocating it as though we’ve got it in some bank. ‘Oh, yeah, we’ll spend it there.’ Here, Dick Armey. Barnicle asked him last night, said, ‘Mr. Armey, you’re a Ph.D. in economics. Why should I not be scared over all this?’
ARMEY: Well, I don’t know, it’s all very confusing to me. I want to remind you I have a Ph.D. in economics, and I have to tell you: We used to say that inflation is caused by too many dollars chasing too few goods. Right now we’ve got this unbelievable flood of bad money chasing worthless product and nothing new, nothing is being produced out of it. It’s like we’re putting the whole family in hock to pay the bail and pay the fines and pay off the bad debts of our irresponsible relatives but it is creating nothing of value in the economy and preserving a lot of trash off on the corner.
RUSH: And it’s keeping some people in their Hamptons homes rather than having to sell and move to Yonkers.