Bush’s inauguration illustrates Dems’ selective memory

If I needed any further proof that Democrat politicians are petulant children, I need look no further than their carping over two recent events: President George W. Bush’s inauguration and Gov. Kenny Guinn’s last State of the State address.

Rep. Anthony Weiner, D-NY, summoned up his party’s position over the Bush inauguration when he suggested that the estimated $40 million for the Bush inauguration was “extravagant” in light of Iraq. He said that the Bush inaugural parties should be scaled back, citing as an example Democratic President Franklin Roosevelt’s inauguration during World War II.

“President Roosevelt held his 1945 inaugural at the White House, making a short speech and serving guests cold chicken salad and plain pound cake,” Weiner said.

Of course, nowhere does the normally astute media point out that there was no formal celebration or parade in 1945 because of FDR’s poor health—he died on April 12, 1945, less than 90 days after being sworn in.

The Associated Press ran a story that asked what folks would buy with $40 million. The answer, according to the wire service: “200 armored Humvees … vaccinations and preventive health care for 22 million children … and a down payment on the nation’s deficit.” The news outlet would have you believe this is clear proof that the Bush administration has its priorities out of whack.

For the moment, hold in the back of your mind the fact that the inauguration was paid for by private donations. While you are considering that, consider this: Bush’s inauguration cost less than Clinton’s second inauguration, which cost about $42 million.

When the cost is adjusted for inflation, Clinton’s second-term celebration exceeded Bush’s by about 25 percent. According to the Consumer Price Index, $42 million in 1997 is the equivalent of $49.5 in 2005, as reported by the Washington Times.

Where were Democrats in 1997? Oh yeah, attending Bill Clinton’s record 12 gala balls.

Nevada Democrats are prone to similar myopia.

In Gov. Guinn’s State of the State address, he proposed 2 percent annual raises for teachers and state employees over the next two years. What was the Democratic response?

Assemblywoman Chris Giunchigliani, D-Las Vegas, said, “The raises wouldn’t even keep pace with inflation.”

Yet she failed to mention (or didn’t realize) that between 2000 and 2003, the average annual rate of inflation was 1.57 percent.

Predictably, the state employees union is pushing for a 5 percent increase. Presumably, it is better to spend the surplus before Republicans do something crazy, like give it back to the people it was taken from.

In that spirit, Guinn echoed his well-publicized promise to return the $300 million budget surplus to taxpayers by rebating vehicle registration fees. Under the proposal, residents would receive a maximum of $300 for each vehicle they registered in 2004.

Analysts predicted that 80 percent of the state’s vehicle registrations last year would be completely refunded, and the remaining 20 percent would receive the $300 maximum.

State Democrats cried foul. Senate Minority Leader Dina Titus, D-Las Vegas, said, “The person with a Hummer and a sailboat gets the most money ($300), but the poor family driving an old car and sending their kids to college gets $50.”

Fairness would seem to dictate that the ones who paid the most should get the most back. But the reality is that Democrats don’t believe in “fairness;” they believe in wealth re-distribution by the government. Hence, tax the productive; everyone else gets a free ride.

President Ronald Reagan once spoke of this mentality: "If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And, if it stops moving, subsidize it."