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Reimagineamerica Radio Hour – January 21: Continuing Resolutions are not Governing!

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Listener “Robin” called-in to talk about the Government Shutdown and the lack of a US Budget. It was a spirited 10 minute conversation you will want to listen to!

But First:

It is crystal clear this morning that we shouldn’t be paying Congress or the President because they are not getting the most basic job done – i.e. keeping the government open.

Article 1 of the Constitution enumerates the most important function of Congress – to create and fund a budget to keep the country safe and secure.

  • The two Houses of Congress were intended to do the immediate business of the people (House)
  • And to consider and plan the immediate into the longer-term future of the nation (Senate)

Article 2 – similarly – reminds us that the President’s job is to direct the work of the government (funded by Congress) toward the same ends.

Over the two and a half centuries since the Constitution was written the role of the President has evolved with the growth of the country. But the basics have not changed.

  • The President proposes policy and a budget to implement it and the Congress disposes – passes laws and appropriates money to implement them.
  • Even if the President vetoes a piece of legislation – Congress can override that veto and make law.

The increasing level of partisanship in Washington has led to a situation in which it has become common place for Congress to fail to do its most basic job. This didn’t start with President Trump or with President Obama

  • The first government shutdown occurred in 1981 under Ronald Reagan
  • I was shocked to find while researching this morning’s program that the shutdown that began at 12:01 AM yesterday is the 10th government shutdown since 1981!
    • The longest (16 days) during the Obama Administration over the funding of Obamacare!

Still worse, since 2001 Congress has passed continuing resolutions to get around their failure to pass a budget not once or twice or three times (if you’ve been following the crazy talking heads over the weekend) – nope, we’ve had 62 continuing resolutions and only three (3) budgets (under George W. Bush) –

  • A republican Congress
  • An MBA in the White

George W. Bush understood the two things that make debating and passing a budget and ALL of the appropriation bills that are required to implement that budget –

First, a budget is a PLAN — a PLAN is the roadmap to accomplish a stated goal – if you want to learn more about planning and government go to and do a search on Planning.

The hierarchy – an agreed to Vision (a goal for the nation) – campaign –

  • and then to develop a Plan to accomplish that Vision – the work of the President and Congress –
  • and next to appropriate the money to do the tasks that accomplish the plan – that’s the work of Congress in consultation with the President.
  • Executive branch then executes the plan with oversight from Congress
  • Then, we the citizens (voters), get to measure the effectiveness of the plan
  • And, lastly, without a PLAN – how do we know how many workers America needs
    • The reason for immigration policy!

The Second Thing that George W. Bush knew was the growing federal debt was not sustainable. We needed a PLAN (think budget) that would begin to pare that down –

  • We don’t need to re-live the Bush Presidency here today.
  • Let’s just agree that he failed to accomplish that second goal
  • But, still, the National Debt was less than $10 Trillion in 2001 and is not set to sail past $21 T very soon –

And therein lies the problem –

MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN is a nice slogan – but it hasn’t been turned into an achievable goal.

Lacking a goal, there is no Plan – no budget.

And therein lies the problem –

MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN is a nice slogan – but it hasn’t been turned into an achievable goal.

Lacking a goal, there is no Plan – no budget.

But, first, a couple of brief news items:

So far – there is no deal on DACA – because as President Obama once mused – a crisis is a terrible thing to waste.

  • 57 percent of those polled in a CNN poll on Friday DO NOT APPROVE of shutting down the government over DACA
  • While still professing support for a solution to the DACA issue —

Apple announcement that it is going to pay $38 Billion in back taxes is good news for US but it is equally good for Apple!

  • At 35% they would have paid $83B
  • Brings cash home where they can do more with it – development etc..
  • Building another USA facility is good business
    • Building in Reno right now
    • I would vote for Appalachia



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