Tuesday, September 12, 2006


The Budget Battle of 1995

[The following poem, written August 6, 1995, shows that things haven't changed much in ten years.]

For forty years they were consigned
To talk, to watch, but not prevail.
The majority they oft maligned
And criticized, to no avail:

"Spending's high and taxes grow,
Increasing is the national debt.
If we were running things, we'd show
Fiscal responsibility. You bet!"

Then one day they came to power.
It was the election of 'ninety-four.
For Democrats, the day was sour
As Republicans won seats galore.

"We have a contract. Now, you'll see
Taxing, borrowing, and spending shrink,"
Sang the new Speaker, filled with glee,
"In seven years, no more red ink!"

The Speaker then picked chairmen bold
To organize, with new majorities
The Committees, that would hearings hold
To set our nation's new priorities.

"Our first priority is defense,"
The Chairman of one committee said.
"It is a problem most intense.
We must think clearly and keep our head."

"The Soviet Union is no more
Freedom has triumphed over might.
But there are new enemies galore
That we must be prepared to fight.

"We'll build our defense back up again.
(Those Dems have left it in such a state!)
We'll throw more money to the Pentagon men.
They'll spend it in our districts. That's great!"

Another Chairman then opined,
"We promised saner regulation.
The EPA must be made to mind
The wishes of a resentful nation."

"Environmentalists did not elect us.
Our friends in Business need relief.
If we don't deliver, they may reject us
And in the next election, we'll come to grief."

Another Chairman urged reform
Of welfare programs, made to serve
The needs of poor folk. He did storm,
"Those loafers get things they don't deserve!"

"'Tough love' is what we advocate:
Take children from those welfare mothers
Too young to vote, and thus create
A stern example for the others."

Another said, "We mustn't discourage
More enterprise among the wealthy.
A substantial tax cut would encourage
Their efforts to keep the economy healthy."

Meanwhile, our good President
A budget of his own submitted.
His supporters declared, "It's evident
That to responsible government he's committed."

But the Speaker said, "It will not pass.
We need more tax cuts and less spending.
(The hard-pressed rich and the business class
Are the ones our Party is defending.)"
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