DISCLAIMER: THE FOLLOWING "Cost of Freedom Recap" CONTAINS STRONG OPINIONS WHICH ARE NOT A REFLECTION OF THE OPINIONS OF FOX NEWS AND SHOULD NOT BE RELIED UPON AS INVESTMENT ADVICE WHEN MAKING PERSONAL INVESTMENT DECISIONS. IT IS FOX NEWS' POLICY THAT CONTRIBUTORS DISCLOSE POSITIONS THEY HOLD IN STOCKS THEY DISCUSS, THOUGH POSITIONS MAY CHANGE. READERS OF "Cost of Freedom Recap" MUST TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR THEIR OWN INVESTMENT DECISIONS.
REPORT: SCHUMER PUSHING FOR STIMULUS IN FISCAL CLIFF DEAL
CHARLES PAYNE: Spending, spending, and spending. For me it's like, let's just cut to the chase. What bothers me is that we keep talking about the rich, and then we say it's not rich people, its small businesses-it's already just a disaster. To have the nerve to come out and say-hey, let's stimulate again. Let's create a few temporary jobs, let's do deficit spending. It's what got us into this mess in the first place. It just boggles my mind.
BEN STEIN: It's absolutely impossible to say that an issue like fiscal policy won the election for Mr. Obama. That is just the most amazing nonsense I have ever heard in my life. But also, the whole point of the Fiscal Cliff is to reduce the deficit. Now you're going to say-okay we're going to add to the deficit. In that case, let's leave taxes low and let's keep spending high. I mean, the whole idea is-we've got to stop this out of control deficit and debt. What Senator Schumer is proposing is exactly the wrong idea.
DAGEN MCDOWELL: The main argument is-we need to simulate growth. But, you will hurt growth if you raise taxes. It gets back to what we've said all along-we will raise your taxes because we, the government and the lawmakers, can spend your money better than you can spend it yourself. It doesn't make any sense. It's just upside down. But, that's the way they think.
CHARLIE GASPARINO: What we should point out is when Mitt Romney had his bright and shining moment at that first debate. What he did best was showing President Obama's economic incoherency. And that's what this plan is about. Think about what they're doing. They're saying we're going to tax small businesses and people who make money and spend it so other people can make money. Then you know what we're going to do? We're going to do some stimulus stuff on the side. It's irrational. And I'll tell you, the markets hate this deal so far. Adam, if you're going to deny that, you maybe have a needle sticking out of your arm.
ADAM LASHINSKY: What I'm going to deny is a couple of points. First of all, President Obama has not called for new stimulus spending. He's not suggesting that. Okay, so you won't like this. But here are two different issues. Additional stimulus spending on the one end-the president hasn't called for it. Leave entitle spending alone again. This is not the central argument that the President has been making. He has already indicated that he is willing to look at entitlement spending and he is willing to compromise on that.
REPORT: FEMA LIKELY TO REQUEST BAILOUT AFTER SNADY STRAINS BUDGET
CHARLES PAYNE: Well, now they're talking about a bailout for FEMA. They already got a bailout for Katrina and never paid that back. Now, they're going to need another $16 billion. Now of course, they had to find places to stay but, it just doesn't feel right.
ADAM LASHINSKY: The FEMA worker did stay at the Hilton Garden Inn and I believe some Marriott residents. We're just piling on. FEMA of course has problems and needs to be improved.
BEN STEIN: If George Bush had been President when this happened and people in New York were still without power more than two weeks after the disaster, they would be screaming to lynch him. The media has just totally bailed on this and they are totally favoring President Obama. Clearly, FEMA didn't do their job right. It's okay if they stay at $300 a night hotels. I mean, it's just pennies compared with what we spend all together. If they need more money - they need more money. Clearly they were not up for the job. They had quite a bit a warning about this, they didn't stock pile supplies, and they didn't stock pile food. There's something drastically wrong with FEMA.
CHARLIE GASPARINO: Why are they staying in Manhattan? By the way, there's a place called Queens and there's another one called the Bronx that you might be able to stay in. I guarantee there are hotels there. This is why it just reeks. For all I know, they checked every hotel in the Bronx, in Yonkers, in the surrounding areas and they found they were sold out-I doubt that.
DAGEN MCDOWELL: This is about the financial mismanagement of a government agency. It is about financial mismanagement of the national flood insurance program where people in this country get to buy insurance at below market rates that is subsidized by the American taxpayer. When a storm hits, they have to go to the treasury department and they're going to run out of the borrowing limit after this storm. But again, we as a nation let this go on and on and on. Even people within the government know the flood insurance program is completely mismanaged.
HOSTESS GOING OUT OF BUSINESS AFTER STANDOFF WITH UNIONS
CHARLIE GASPARINO: Well, I'm not a big fan of Twinkies. I think its legalized poison. I don't want the people who lost their jobs to get offended, but it is a cautionary tale. If you push too hard on a company, you'll end up like the automakers unless you get bailed out. Twinkies is not going to be bailed out. This is a cautionary tale of what happens. What's great about it is that it's a private sector union. That's why they felt the pain. If it was government, they wouldn't feel the pain.
CHARLES PAYNE: Listen, there was a time obviously when unions did some amazing things. They made the workplace better. But now, they put their interest ahead of customers and shareholders.
DAGEN MCDOWELL: Even the teamsters were upset.
BEN STEIN: There're still plenty of rich sugary foods out there and I have to say I'm not as thin or fit as Charlie but I happen to love them and I love sugar all together. The unions are just too aggressive in cases like this. What can their possible rationality be for putting their own member out of a job? How do you explain to a man or woman who can't feed his or her family-hey I put you out of the job to demand more money for a job you don't have anymore. How can you explain that?
ADAM LASHINSKY: This is a gross oversimplification of a complicated issue. There were other problems with Hostess other than not being able to reach an agreement with their unions. For the very reason we're talking about it, I mean, I finally remember Ding-Dongs from my childhood and I haven't eaten one in a very long time. And I wouldn't feed one to my daughter. That's the problem here.
STOCKS ON SALE
CHARLES PAYNE: I like Nike. Earlier this week, Footlocker and Dicks reported great numbers. It's cheap enough here to buy.
ADAM LASHINSKY: I love Nike, even though I'm an Asics shoe runner. I just don't think it's that cheap. I do like the company Charles.
ADAM LASHINSKY: The tech giant Cisco. This stock is super cheap. They have less than twelve times trailing earnings and a 3 percent dividend. Not a great business but it's going to be a good value.
BEN STEIN: There's hardly any better company in the world of Cisco. I think he's right on the money but, what he knows and what the market doesn't know is a bit of a mystery to me.
VANGUARD TOTAL STOCK (VTI)
BEN STEIN: VTI. I am very happy if I can keep up with the market.