To watch "The Talking Points Memo" in the Screening Room click here.
Hi, I'm Bill O'Reilly. Thanks for watching us tonight.
Is vote-buying hurting your family? That is the subject of this evening's Talking Points Memo. The recall of California Governor Gray Davis (search) is really all about vote-buying. The governor gathered his power, not by solving problems, but by wild spending targeted at groups who would vote for him.
For example, Davis increased state spending by nearly 40 percent over his five years in office. That includes a 38 percent rise in health and welfare spending, while the actual welfare roles were cut by 20 percent.
Davis also increased spending on state workers by 38 percent and doubled the money paid out to them via workman's comp, even though comp claims declined.
Even Barney the dinosaur could figure out that Davis was lining the pockets of his core supporters, while raising taxes on the working men and women of California.
Yet The New York Times and The Los Angeles Times oppose the recall of Gray Davis. So steeped in ideology are those two newspapers, that even though millions of Americans are getting hosed by an incompetent politician, they oppose his removal. Unbelievable.
President Bush is also doing his share of vote-buying, and it's got to stop. Americans cannot continue to fork over their hard-earned money so politicians can keep their power. Gray Davis turned a $10 billion surplus into a $40 billion deficit in just four years. President Bush is running a record federal deficit, although to be fair, the war on terror and Iraq are partly to blame.
The solution is this. Fire people like Davis, who are simply ridiculous and pass state laws requiring voters to approve any rise in state spending each year. Colorado does this, and it is one of the few states that is not killing its citizenry with taxes.
Enough is enough. Americans have a right to earn money and keep most of it. The government does not have the right to punish achievement and confiscate property via the estate tax in order to redistribute the money to selected blocks of voters. Our freedom of choice is being eroded because many working Americans simply do not have enough money to make choices. Our tax system has become punitive for just about everybody holding a decent job. There needs to be a tax revolt in this country. And the California recall is a good beginning. We need public servants who will solve problems, not buy votes. You are being conned and the elite media is providing cover for the con men and women. Get angry. This has got to stop.
And that's The Memo.
The Most Ridiculous Item of the Day
Time now for "The Most Ridiculous Item of the Day"...
American authorities are going through the belongings of the dearly departed Uday and Qusay Hussein (search). In Uday's briefcase, they found Viagra and a lone condom, according to Newsweek magazine.
What conclusions we can draw from this are limited, but we suspect Uday may have been having a little trouble getting dates prior to the shoot-out, although, obviously, safe sex was on his mind. Otherwise, it would have been ridiculous.