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Rome Wasn't Burnt in a Day: The Real Deal on How Politicians, Bureaucrats, and Other Washington Barbarians Are Bankrupting America
     

Rome Wasn't Burnt in a Day: The Real Deal on How Politicians, Bureaucrats, and Other Washington Barbarians Are Bankrupting America

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by Joe Scarborough
 

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Who are the political barbarians bankrupting America — Democrats or Republicans? Where are taxpayers' dollars really going? Joe Scarborough gives you the inside scoop on how Washington really works and on the out-of-control deficit spending that takes place in our nation's capital each and every day.

Joe Scarborough, former Republican congressman and

Overview

Who are the political barbarians bankrupting America — Democrats or Republicans? Where are taxpayers' dollars really going? Joe Scarborough gives you the inside scoop on how Washington really works and on the out-of-control deficit spending that takes place in our nation's capital each and every day.

Joe Scarborough, former Republican congressman and current host of MSNBC's top-rated Scarborough Country, takes you behind the closed doors of Congress and wittily presents the reasons why Democrats and Republicans are alike when it comes to squandering taxpayer dollars.

As part of the Gingrich Republican Revolution, he witnessed the principles of fiscal responsibility get buried in the political swamp of Washington. Now Scarborough offers profound solutions on how excessive government spending by politicians of all stripes can be minimized, and how the Repub-lican Party can be called back to the principles that President Ronald Reagan made famous.

Editorial Reviews

Senator - John McCain
"Joe is a refreshingly independent thinker and straight talker."
Mario M. Cuomo
“A strong, independent voice...[a] hard-hitting collection of revelations.”
Senator John McCain
“Joe is a refreshingly independent thinker and straight talker.”
Daily News
“Scarborough pulls no punches.”

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780060749859
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
10/04/2005
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
208
Sales rank:
616,792
Product dimensions:
5.31(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.46(d)

Read an Excerpt

Rome Wasn't Burnt in a Day

The Real Deal on How Politicians, Bureaucrats, and Other Washington Barbarians Are Bankrupting America
By Joe Scarborough

HarperCollins Publishers, Inc.

Copyright © 2005 Joe Scarborough
All right reserved.

ISBN: 0060749857

Chapter One

The Raw Deal

Telling Americans the uncomfortable truth about their government has angered Democratic presidents, Republican Speakers, and party bosses of all stripes for as long as I can recall. But this truth-telling approach I've adopted was responsible for getting an unknown thirty-one-year-old elected to Congress in a Florida district that had not sent a Republican to the House of Representatives in more than a hundred years. And it was that same straight-talking style that got me re-elected in landslide elections three times. But my methods did little to endear me to party bosses or committee chairmen who preferred to pepper news outlets with press releases to keep the natives happy while operating quietly behind closed doors constantly consolidating power. As was the case in Congress, I still believe that sunlight is the best disinfectant to cure the ills of Washington. So political hacks of the world beware. It's time for Americans to tear down the gates of the Imperial Congress and let some sunlight illuminate the grim realities of congressional business. As I say on my cable news show, it's time for the "Real Deal."

My fellow Republicans, Congress, the president, and national party bosses have conspired with Democratic politicians, lawyers, and bureaucrats to indulge in the most reckless federal spending spree in U.S. history. How reckless, you ask? Well, in just three years since George W. Bush was elected president, your Republican-run Congress took a $155 billion surplus and turned it into a staggering $455 billion deficit. These self-described conservatives did it in part by passing a staggering array of pork-barrel bills, billion-dollar farm subsidies, and trillion-dollar entitlement programs that America cannot afford.

At the same time, Republican congressmen voted into power in 1994 under the platform of cutting wasteful Washington spending have worked with liberal Democrats to strap you and your unsuspecting fellow Americans over the course of the last decade with the largest annual budget deficit and federal debt in the history of the United States. Most get reelected with ease by telling the folks back home that they still support smaller government and balanced budgets. But when they return to Congress, these politicians meekly fall in line. That is why the U.S. National Debt Clock in New York City blinked wildly out of control as it streaked somewhere north of $7 trillion.

Seven Trillion Dollars! Dear God.

Jesus, Drugs, and Debt

$7,000,000,000,000+ is an impossible numerical concept for most Americans to grasp. Since I spent my undergraduate years at the University of Alabama, I adopted former football coach Bear Bryant's skeptical view of numbers. "It's kinda hard to rally a campus around some math class," the Bear opined. I agreed and avoided math like the plague in college, relying instead on the goodness and pity of others when it came time to comprehend basic mathematical concepts. Fortunately, back when I was in Congress, Michigan representative Nick Smith was kind enough to draw diagrams in crayons to help me understand just how hard it would be to pay off America's multitrillion-dollar debt.

Nick told me back then, as I tucked my abacus safely into my office drawer, that if I had earned $1 million every single day from the moment Jesus Christ was born until the year 2000, I would still not have earned enough money to pay off America's debt. And that ominous calculation was drawn up four years before Congress went on one of the wildest spending sprees in U.S. history.

Even with the federal deficit and national debt spiraling out of control in recent years, Democrats and Republicans both began pushing for the passage of a national drug benefit for America's ever-expanding senior population. Politicians on both sides of the aisle spent most of the Medicare drug debate acting like burnt-out '70s rock stars. Armed with an endless supply of your cash, these public prima donnas continued paying for their drug fix even after the accountants and lawyers gave them the grim news that their budget surplus had disappeared into a sea of red ink. But in Washington, the band always plays on. There are no Willie Nelsons, no Mick Fleetwoods, no MC Hammers, no repossessed hot tubs. That's because when Washington politicians run out of money, they just print more! Do I hear someone shouting, "Can't touch this"?

Voting for what America's comptroller general David Walker called an $8 billion boondoggle was indefensible for Nick Smith. As the Medicare drug package approached the House floor, Smith says party leaders came to him with an offer too good to refuse: Support our drug deal and we will funnel $100,000 into your son's congressional campaign. But Smith just said no to drugs, voted against adding $8 billion to America's debt, and caused an ethics investigation to be launched into the alleged bribe.

Even mathematically challenged stooges like myself are able to figure out that Washington politicians are mortgaging our economic future and forcing this generation and the next to ultimately pay a painful financial price.

Forget for a minute the economic apocalypse our country will endure when baby boomers push Social Security, Medicare, and retirement programs to the brink of bankruptcy. Instead, focus on what your congressman and senator are costing you and your family today.

Most Americans work half the year paying off taxes, fees, and regulations thrust on them by big-spending politicians at all levels of government. But these days your congressman's culpability is not limited to tax day. You now pay for their carelessness every time you pay your monthly credit card bill, student loan, car lease, or home mortgage. Just as economists have been predicting for years, Washington's runaway deficits are now causing interest rates to move back up. As investment guru Steven Rattner recently told the New York Times, "The question is not whether interest rates will continue to go up. But rather how far and how fast."

Continues...


Excerpted from Rome Wasn't Burnt in a Day by Joe Scarborough Copyright © 2005 by Joe Scarborough. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

What People are Saying About This

John McCain
“Joe is a refreshingly independent thinker and straight talker.”
Mario M. Cuomo
“A strong, independent voice...[a] hard-hitting collection of revelations.”

Meet the Author

Joe Scarborough can be seen nightly as the host of Scarborough Country on MSNBC. He served as a member of Congress from 1994 to 2001 and currently resides in Pensacola, Florida,with his wife and three children.

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Rome Wasn't Burnt in a Day: The Real Deal on How Politicians, Bureaucrats, and Other Washington Barbarians Are Bankrupting America 3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book takes a good, hard, look at how the Republican party of today differs from the Republican party of the 1980s Ronald Reagan Era. Although there has been an expensive War on Terror the past couple of years--due in large part to the 1990s Clinton era gutting of the U.S. military--other big, costly, government programs seem to be all the rage under the current President Bush and many of today's Republican leaders. What is ironic is that the Republican party--long known for less government intervention in individual's lives--today spends more money with Republicans controlling the House, Senate, and White House than it spent during the 1990s Clinton Big Government years. It is rather sad, but obvious, that the young Republican mavericks who were elected during the 1994 Newt Gingrich Contract With America (also patterned very much after President Reagan's ideals) never really received the credit that they were due for showing fiscal responsibility. Although, as author Scarborough points out, many of the young 1994 Republicans have since voluntarily left Washington D.C. due to their own self-imposed term limits, many members of the Freshman Republican Class of 1994 had more to do with balancing the budget during the 1990s than Clinton or the old-time Dems and Republicans who have served in Washington for decades and are still there today.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
They were a young, naïve, ambitious, idealistic group of freshman legislators that descended on Washington in the early 1990s determined to block run-away spending by a free-wheeling congress and president. They were instrumental in aiding Newt Gingrich in passing his ¿Contract with America.¿ That was just the glitter of gold they saw at the beginning. It later turned out to be ¿Fool¿s Gold¿ rather than ¿The Real Deal,¿ the name of the author¿s former national cable television program. The author takes aim at both Democrats and Republicans alike, and describes, in detail, episodes of bartering and political maneuvering to pass pet legislation which was often unnecessary, wasteful spending of the taxpayers¿ dollars. You will learn how party leaders use funding of these projects to herd the legislators into following their directives. Scarborough will give you real world examples of how lobbyists throw money before a legislator votes to try to insure that these legislators vote ¿the right way.¿ If you had pre-conceived ideas of how Congress works, this book should erase them.