Legendary economist Milton Friedman outlined the four different ways to spend money: You can spend your own money on yourself. You can spend your own money on someone else. You can spend somebody else’s money on yourself. You can spend somebody else’s money on somebody else. For decades, as former President Calvin Coolidge contended, politicians have committed legalized larceny. Like a 419 scammer from Nigeria, they have taken out credit cards in taxpayers’ names and maxed them out to shower others in promises of prosperity.
President Joe Biden has not taken long to adopt Friedman’s fourth tactic of governing, venturing beyond the deficit-financed $1.9 trillion coronavirus stimulus and relief bill. Paying fees and reversing cuts are exacerbating America’s $50,000-per-second hemorrhaging – and he is just getting started.
WHO Pays for What?
Last spring, then-President Donald Trump withheld millions of dollars in funding to the World Health Organization (WHO), accusing the body of being under the control of China since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Soon after, the White House announced it would be removing the United States from the WHO, citing the group’s “mismanaging and covering up the spread of the coronavirus.”
Effective July 6, 2021, the U.S. would have no longer been a member of the WHO. But now that is off the table, according to the new administration.
President Biden reversed the decision, and it cost American taxpayers $200 million in membership fees. Secretary of State Antony Blinken stated that the money is what the country owes to the WHO, adding that Biden’s decision would reaffirm the administration’s dedication to global health. Blinken told the United Nations Security Council during a videoconference:
“This is a key step forward in fulfilling our financial obligations as a WHO member and it reflects our renewed commitment to ensuring the WHO has the support it needs to lead the global response to the pandemic even as we work to reform it for the future.
The United States will work with our partners across the globe to expand manufacturing and distribution capacity and to increase access, including marginalized populations.”
Let’s hope the WHO is not wasting taxpayer contributions on outlandish traveling. Oh, wait.
The Cupboard Is Bare
The federal budget is homing in on $5 trillion, an all-time high for a government that is facing a deficit of around $1 trillion per year for the next decade. With a ledger that enormous, the average American would think there is some room for a modicum of trimmings. Not so, says President Biden.
He told Congress last month that he has cancelled a last-minute move by his predecessor to cut $27.4 billion in funding for multiple federal agencies. In a letter to lawmakers, Biden confirmed that “I am withdrawing 73 proposed rescissions previously transmitted to the Congress.”
Trump had stated he would support December’s $900 billion coronavirus relief package on the condition that he would insert rescissions to the legislation.
“I will sign the Omnibus and Covid package with a strong message that makes clear to Congress that wasteful items need to be removed,” the former president said after signing the bill.
It turns out that the U.S. government desperately needs to keep the $27 billion, even when Uncle Sam is spending trillions of dollars each year.
We’ll Always Have Paris
One of President Biden’s first acts was to rejoin the Paris Climate Accord, an agreement of 195 signatories to take action on climate change. Trump had ditched the treaty soon after taking office, leading to doom-and-gloom prognostications from Democrats and the establishment press. Despite taking the first plane out of Paris, the U.S. recorded better emissions results than all the nations that stayed put, thanks to innovation within the energy industry.
Biden disagreed, signing an executive order that places the U.S. back in the globalist movement. It also means that taxpayers would be on the hook for $3 billion as part of the Green Climate Fund – about $500 million had already been deposited during former President Barack Obama’s administration.
The president is now scheduled to host a climate powwow of world leaders on Earth Day (April 22) where he will outline America’s objectives for slashing carbon emissions over the next nine years.
Bipartisan Abuse of the Public Purse
With Biden residing in the Oval Office, all the latest egregious outlays fall directly on his lap. But exploding debts and deficits have been a bipartisan effort for decades, with Republicans only pretending to be fiscal conservatives when they were the sitting opposition. Since the government maintains a monopoly on power over the public, Americans are coercively gouged for subpar goods and services. The $400 billion for “the most expensive weapon system in history, the F-35 Lightning II Stealth fighter,” is a good example of this. Without government competition, taxpayers cannot be fleeced by another White House or Congress at a lower price.
Read more from Andrew Moran.