United States government

Deficit shrank in August, but …

Deficit shrank in August, but …

The top takeaway of the Congressional Budget Office Monthly Budget Review for August 2020 is that the deficit for the month is smaller than last August. But there are details. Sometimes it pays to read the fine print. Otherwise, you may receive a false impression. Here is the monthly budget review for August 2020, which is the eleventh month of fiscal year 2020: The federal budget deficit in August 2020 was $198 billion, CBO estimates, $3 billion less than the deficit in August of last year. However, that comparison is distorted by shifts in the timing of certain payments in…
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Border wall procedures criticized

Border wall procedures criticized

A government watchdog says the procedures for acquiring the southern border wall are inadequate, and the ability to maintain complete operational control is diminished. A report by the Office of Inspector General of the Department of Homeland Security finds that U.S. Customs and Border Protection found the procedures for procuring the southern border wall inadequate for the task. Specifically, the IG found that CBP did not attempt to identify "the most effective, appropriate, and affordable solutions to obtain operational control of the southern border as directed." Instead, the IG described the methods as "outdated." The report found other deficiencies and…
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Federal revenue and outlays

Federal revenue and outlays

An interactive visualization of federal government revenue and spending from 1962 to the present. This data comes from the Congressional Budget Office Budget and Economic Data page. While CBO often makes projections of the future and those projections may be controversial, the data in this visualization is historical. CBO presents this data in current dollars and as a percent of gross domestic product, or GDP. When current dollars are adjusted to account for inflation, the result is "real dollars." In this visualization, I have used the CPI to convert current dollars to the value of dollars in 2019. CBO also…
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Relations with North Korea

Relations with North Korea

The Congressional Research Service has produced a summary and timeline of recent events pertaining to the United States and North Korea relationship. In May the Congressional Research Service published a timeline of events relating to the relationship between the United States and North Korea. The document is available here: North Korea: A Chronology of Events from 2016 to 2020. Here is a portion of the report's introduction, with footnote references removed: Since Kim and President Trump’s first summit in Singapore in June 2018, however, little progress has been made on denuclearization, despite two more Kim-Trump meetings (a February 2019 summit…
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Electoral College math

Electoral College math

In the Electoral College, residents of different states have widely varying influence. When thinking about the desirability of the Electoral College for electing a president, the arithmetic should be considered. I have performed a few calculations, gathering state populations and the number of Electoral College votes. Here are the two extremes: In Wyoming, there are 192,579 people for each Electoral College vote (577,737 / 3). In Texas, the number is 755,312. That's a difference of 3.92, which is a lot, I would say. For Kansas, the number is 485,251. The average value for a state (weighting all states equally) is…
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Federal budget summary for 2019

Federal budget summary for 2019

Federal revenues for 2019 were up, but spending increased by a larger amount, resulting in a higher deficit. The Congressional Budget Office has released its summary for fiscal year 2019, which ended on September 30, 2019. The headline numbers are these: In fiscal year 2019, which ended on September 30, the federal budget deficit totaled $984 billion -- $205 billion more than the shortfall recorded in 2018. The deficit increased to 4.6 percent of the nation’s gross domestic product (GDP) in 2019, up from 3.8 percent in 2018 and 3.5 percent in 2017. As a result, federal debt held by…
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WichitaLiberty.TV: United States Representative Ron Estes

WichitaLiberty.TV: United States Representative Ron Estes

In this episode of WichitaLiberty.TV: Republican candidate for Congress Representative Ron Estes explains why he should continue to be our representative in the United States House of Representatives. View below, or click here to view at YouTube. Episode 214, broadcast October 21, 2018. Shownotes Campaign website: estesforcongress.com Representative Ron Estes Congressional Office: estes.house.gov Map of Kansas district 4 from U.S.Census Bureau
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WichitaLiberty.TV: Candidate for Congress James Thompson

WichitaLiberty.TV: Candidate for Congress James Thompson

In this episode of WichitaLiberty.TV: Democratic Party candidate for Congress James Thompson explains why he should be our next representative in the United States House of Representatives. View below, or click here to view at YouTube. Episode 213, broadcast October 14, 2018. Shownotes Campaign website: www.votejamesthompson.com Map of Kansas district 4 from U.S. Census Bureau
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From Pachyderm: Congressman Mike Pompeo

From Pachyderm: Congressman Mike Pompeo

From the Wichita Pachyderm Club: Congressman Mike Pompeo delivered an update on the issues of the day and answered questions. Over 100 Pachyderm Club members and guests attended. This audio presentation was recorded on October 21, 2016.
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WichitaLiberty.TV: James Rosebush, author of ‘True Reagan’

WichitaLiberty.TV: James Rosebush, author of ‘True Reagan’

James S. Rosebush worked in the White House as assistant to President Ronald Reagan. He's written a book about Reagan titled True Reagan: What Made Ronald Reagan Great and Why It Matters. During his visit to Wichita, he stopped by the WichitaLiberty.TV studios. View our discussion below, or click here to view at YouTube. Episode 123, broadcast June 26, 2016. Shownotes The book True Reagan: What Made Ronald Reagan Great and Why It Matters by James Rosebush at Amazon James Rosebush at LinkedIn James Rosebush at Business Insider
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Should the U.S. implement austerity measures?

Should the U.S. implement austerity measures?

From Michael Smith, Chair of Department of Social Sciences at Emporia State University: "Video is now available for the debated hosted by Murad Gündüz Jalilov on behalf of Up to Us and the Public Administration Club: Should the U.S. implement austerity measures due to the size of the national debt? Featuring Dr. Max Skidmore of UMKC and Mr. Bob Weeks of wichitaliberty.org." View below, or click here to view at YouTube. The video was recorded in a challenging acoustical environment. An audio recording that I captured and processed for clarity is available at Debate: The National Debt.
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David Bobb: Free speech and its importance

David Bobb: Free speech and its importance

David Bobb, President of The Bill of Rights Institute, explains freedom of speech and its importance. View below, or click here to view at YouTube. Wichita, Kansas, February 18, 2016. Notes Bill of Rights Institute website Bill of Rights Institute on Facebook Bill of Rights Institute on Twitter: @BRInstitute
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WichitaLiberty.TV: David Bobb, President of Bill of Rights Institute

WichitaLiberty.TV: David Bobb, President of Bill of Rights Institute

In this episode of WichitaLiberty.TV: David Bobb, President of The Bill of Rights Institute, talks about civic education and the importance of humility. View below, or click here to view at YouTube. Episode 110, broadcast February 21, 2016. Shownotes Bill of Rights Institute website Bill of Rights Institute on Facebook Bill of Rights Institute on Twitter: @BRInstitute
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Debate: The National Debt

Debate: The National Debt

This is an audio recording of a debate on the theme “Should the U.S. implement austerity measures due to the national debt?” The event was sponsored by Up To Us, a nationwide campus competition in which students create thought-provoking, fun campaigns to raise awareness about a critical issue affecting their future — the long-term national debt. This event took place at Emporia State University on February 15, 2016. Participants were Bob Weeks of Voice for Liberty at wichitaliberty.org and Professor Max Skidmore of University of Missouri, Kansas City. Michael Smith of ESU was the faculty coordinator, and Rob Catlett of…
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WichitaLiberty.TV: Journalist, novelist, and blogger Bud Norman on presidential politics

WichitaLiberty.TV: Journalist, novelist, and blogger Bud Norman on presidential politics

In this episode of WichitaLiberty.TV: Journalist, novelist, and blogger Bud Norman joins host Bob Weeks to discuss presidential election politics. View below, or click here to view at YouTube. Episode 108, broadcast February 7, 2016. Shownotes The Central Standard Times The Things That Are Caesars: A Comic Tale of Politics, Religion, and Other Impolite Topics This Town Is Nowhere
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Abengoa, Kansas ethanol plant operator, may seek bankruptcy

Abengoa, Kansas ethanol plant operator, may seek bankruptcy

A company that has a taxpayer-guaranteed loan may be entering bankruptcy. Will taxpayers have to pay? (Updated November 30) Spanish energy giant Abengoa has taken preliminary steps that could lead to bankruptcy filing. Of relevance to Kansas -- and the country at large -- is the Abengoa cellulosic ethanol plant near Hugoton. That plant received a $132.4 million loan guarantee from the United States government under the same program that benefited Solyndra. That company cost taxpayers over $500 million when it defaulted on its taxpayer-guaranteed loan. Does a bankruptcy filing by Abengoa place U.S. taxpayers on the hook for the…
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WichitaLiberty.TV: Congressman Mike Pompeo

WichitaLiberty.TV: Congressman Mike Pompeo

In this episode of WichitaLiberty.TV: Congressman Mike Pompeo talks about the Middle East, politics in Washington, and domestic issues. View below, or click here to view in high definition at YouTube. Episode 101, broadcast November 29, 2015. Shownotes Mike Pompeo Congressional office Recent talk at Wichita Pachyderm Club
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FBI and counterterrorism

FBI and counterterrorism

John Sullivan, who is Supervisory Special Agent for the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in Wichita, spoke to members and guests of the Wichita Pachyderm Club on the topic "Counterterrorism." This is an audio presentation recorded on October 23, 2015.
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WichitaLiberty.TV: Lack of information sharing by government, community improvement districts, and the last episode of “Love Gov”

WichitaLiberty.TV: Lack of information sharing by government, community improvement districts, and the last episode of “Love Gov”

In this episode of WichitaLiberty.TV: Do our governmental agencies really want to share data and documents with us? Community Improvement Districts and homeowners compared. And, the last episode of “Love Gov” from the Independent Institute. View below, or click here to view in high definition at YouTube. Episode 95, broadcast September 20, 2015.
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