Friday, August 13, 2010

Up in smoke

The Democratic National Committee sent out a press release this morning, criticizing the U.S. Senate candidate Dino Rossi for his condemnation of Michael Morgan, a pyschology professor at WSU Vancouver, who received a $148,438 federal grant of "stimulus" money, in order to "study the interaction of opioids and cannabinoids to see if it could produce more effective pain relief."

The email, headlined "FAIL" uses a jarring set of logic to prove that the money spent on the project, which was originally condemned by anti-pork Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., actually is meant to stimulate the economy:
Morgan said he is "dumbfounded" that he is being attacked for a $150,000 study aimed at making progress in the management of pain, which one study estimates costs U.S. employers $80 billion a year in sick days and lost productivity.

"There are millions of Americans suffering from chronic pain," Morgan said. "Is Rossi arguing that we should not do research to find better ways to reduce this suffering?"
Sure Mr. Morgan. That's exactly what Rossi means. You know, in the same way that a police man would prefer you don't stop a thief by shooting him in the back (taking the law into your own hands). In other words, you, Mr. Morgan, have made a classic "ends justify the means" argument.

First of all, the stimulus is built on an entirely flawed foundation, namely, that the government is capable of "priming the pump" of the economy by essentially "cheating" and also propping up players who lose because of their own ignorance and expecting them to suddenly start winning once they have been rescued.

In addition, not only is this particular project, and many like it, so far out from even the main (flawed) objective of the stimulus, they also grievously violate, in true "New Deal" style, all the restrictions placed by the constitution on the power of the purse.

What people should understand is that, ultimately, these kind of projects are granted through those who make a career of lobbying. Remember, the Whatcom Transportation Authority, recently cut a paid lobbyist in Washington D.C. from their payroll, a move the DNC would undoubtedly consider foolish. Why cut such an expenditure if his whole point is to raid the federal coffers on your behalf?

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