Earmarks can have a good use, but most of them are just institutionalized corruption, bribes to get votes on bills. Good riddance.
I wrote a few days ago that advocates of smaller government have won a very significant victory over the past five years, as measured by the fact that there’s been zero growth in overall federal spending.
And because the private economy has grown while the federal budget has been flat, this means that the burden of government spending – measured as a share of GDP – has declined.
This doesn’t mean our fiscal problems are solved. Indeed, the long-run numbers are still horrible and we desperately need genuine entitlement reform to avoid becoming a failed European-style welfare state.
But a long journey begins with a first step and the spending freeze over the past five years is worth celebrating.
And let’s also celebrate the fact that members of Congress no longer have carte blanche, generally using “appropriations” legislation, to specifically allocate spending for campaign contributors and other favored constituencies. Such…
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