This $410 billion 2009 omnibus spending bill which passed the House and is up for vote this week in the Senate is emblematic of the Democrat leadership character of being irresponsible and imprudent on economic matters and terrible stewards of American taxpayers' money. With the country running alarming deficits and in a recession bordering on a depression this omnibus spending bill should have increased spending around 3.85 % over 2008 spending the inflation rate or if the Democrat leadership wanted to act in a manner to demonstrate that they were really making an outstanding effort to remedy social spending failures of the federal government increase spending 125% of inflation to around 5 % but not 8 % or 200% of inflation which the omnibus bill does. Being fiscally responsible means when you don't have the money you rein in spending, you tighten your spending, this is what ordinary American's do. This omnibus spending bill is clearly a product of the liberal Democrat leadership it is not indicative of the character and values of many of the rank and file Democrats in Congress who are mainstream America who hold fiscally responsible values like mainstream America. For the good of their party they should force some changes on this bill because the swing and independent voters which put their party into power don't support the values behind this bill and this bill will end up being a nail in the Democrat Party's coffin. The Democrat spokespeople on this omnibus bill defend this bill by saying that the country is in a recession so this high rate of spending is warranted fundamental economics teaches such spending principles. Ordinary Americans thought that this is what the Economic Stimulus bill enacted in February was all about. In any event, if the Democrat leadership wants to pass a $410 bill omnibus spending bill give them a $410 omnibus spending bill but don't increase baseline spending 200% of the inflation rate like they want. Since the economic stimulus bill passed which has largely been labeled as a disappointment by the business community the Stock Markets have tanked, a slew of corporations have and are planning to announce a dramatic cut in their stock dividend, layoffs continue at a terrible rate, etc., the lesson here is if the Congress in this Omnibus spending bill can throw the economy some meaningful help Democrat members could turn this indefensible bill into a defensible bill. One of the biggest wailings of pain over the "forced through at any cost" stimulus bill that Congress produced was from the real estate, home construction and related industries, they were really looking forward like you couldn't believe to that $15,000 tax credit for home purchases in the bill; that would have really moved a lot of the excess supply of homes for sale which is really a big big problem for this vital sector of the economy. Why don't moderate Democrats and Republicans acting good like you did before in the stimulus legislating insert a provision in the omnibus bill extending the $8,000.00 tax credit for home purchases from not only first-time home buyers but to all buyers, design it like you've designed it for the tax credit for hybrid cars linked to individual automakers in the past, by this I mean, the Congress should say in the bill that it will allot $4 billion dollars for this home purchase credit (so that the government expenditure here is known, limited and controlled) distributed according to some fair formula amongst all the states. This initiative will really juice the real estate market and also do so quickly as home buyers rush out to buy a home before all the tax credits for their state are used up; $ 4 billion spent here would be enough for 500,000 home purchases that type of sales figure help is significant - it would be more than the projected number of new homes to be constructed this year. If because this Omnibus Spending bill is a spending bill Congress can't add a tax credit provision set up the program as a reimbursement or voucher program run out of the Treasury Department where there is a form the citizen fills out saying he or she purchased such and such property for such and such price and has it notarized and has another form which the recorder of deeds fills out confirming the purchase and the paperwork is sent to the Treasury and the Treasury sends the person a check for $8,000.00 or ten percent of the home purchase price whichever is greater. Next, the challenge to scour the omnibus bill to find the $4 billion, readily doable for a fiscally responsible person. Savings could be made in the following areas. Increase the State and Local Law Enforcement and Crime Prevention Grant budget by 5% not 18% saving $360 million dollars - paying for local police is not the Federal Governments mission especially in light of the fact that the federal government eventually shuts off the funding anyhow when the choice of funding is between an earmark or a grant to law enforcement guess who wins? Increase the FBI budget by 7.7 % (200% of the inflation rate) not 11.8 % saving $226 million dollars. Increase the Global Climate Change Research budget by 5% not 15.1% saving $175 million -didn't the nation spend a lot of money on this topic in the stimulus bill. Increase the National Science Foundation budget by 3.85%(the inflation rate) not 5.9% saving $127 million dollars - the nation spent a lot of money in this area in the stimulus bill. Increase the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration budget by 5% not 11.9 % saving $272 million dollars. Increase the Department of Energy budget by 5% not 10.2% saving $1.275 billion dollars - it would be nice to dramatically increase funding in this area because this area holds the potential for long-term significant job growth but the higher priority is staying within a responsible spending level and that means staying in the realm of the inflation rate. Increase the Office of Science budget by 5% not 18.67% saving $553 million dollars - it would be nice to make the planned increase but what can the nation afford. Increase the Social Security Administration budget by 3.85% not 7.24% saving $332 million dollars - it is wrong that there is such a long wait for rightful disability claimants to get the monetary benefits they are entitled to but the first course that needs to be taken from what appears from a review of media reports is that a lot of people need to lose their job that work in that system, if the system was fill with people that did their jobs well the system would be dramatically dramatically better. Increase the Federal Transit Administration budget by 5% instead of 8.3% saving $307 million - How can I say this nicely? Congress had the chance to make historic advances in this area in the stimulus bill but chose not to to the heartbreak of countless leaders leaders throughout the nation; the nation in this bill is bound to spending responsible on the various line items in the bill. Increase the budget for Improving Services for Taxpayers by 3.85% the inflation rate not 6.6 % saving $60 million dollars and likewise increase the budget for IRS enforcement by the inflation rate not 7.1% saving $154 million dollars; in these dark economic times for the nation it is not justifiable to increase the budget of the government's tax collection department above the inflation rate. Increase the budget for Repairs and Restoration in the National Archives and Records Administration by 5% not 77% saving $21 million dollars. Increase the budget for the Diplomatic and Consular Program in the State Department by 5% not 12.4 % saving $275 million dollars; the U.S. government's focus should be on creating jobs within the U.S. not outside the U.S.. Increase the USAID operation budget by 5% not 28% saving $146 million; what is the plan here to send the new 300 foreign service officers hired with the proposed increase in funding to areas of the U.S. where the unemployment rate is over 15% where they can develop the skill set to deal with people that are really hurting and see things as practically hopeless. The future in this country looks so rough ahead economically the country could really use the Congress acting boldly in this omnibus bill if it can swing it and lower for one year the tax rate to 5.25% from 35% on profits from foreign subsidiaries brought back into the country by U.S. corporations like it was done a few years ago. Experts differ on whether it costs the government money or makes the government money but one thing is for certain it would bring hundreds of billions of dollars back into this country, release some of that pressure on cutting stock dividends by U.S. companies and it would help change the dark mood within the business community about the economy. One item that alone should cause members of Congress to be up in arms in regard to this Omnibus bill is the provision ending the school voucher program in Washington D.C.. This is wrong because the District of Columbia has numerous schools that are not good schools so the families of these 1700 students in this voucher program when the program ends are going to be forced to send their children to bad DC schools. The only sure strategy that reliably brings about improvement in public schools is competition in public school systems that is if public schools know that if they don't do their job their existence will be in question they improve and a voucher program provides that needed competition. The cost of this voucher program is only around 19 % year in year out of the Federal Government subsidy to the DC school district, $18 million dollars, it isn't fair to those families in this program that wish to send their children to private schools to end this program, the Federal Government spends hundreds of millions ($216 million in this bill) of dollars every year on grants to charter schools across the nation there isn't this vitriolic opposition to charter schools, candor calls for the conclusion that some leaders in government oppose taxpayer monies going to private schools because their often not unionized and their often religious which is just plain wrong because the issue should solely be how do we best get children an excellent education. If this voucher program is killed, the families of the District of Columbia will be the losers and the nation will be the loser for taking steps backward on the nations work to create a good educational system in our country. Another "step backward for the Country" provision in this omnibus bill is the bill's provision terminating the pilot project allowing Mexican truckers to drive their trucks past the border areas when they are transporting cargo from Mexico as opposed to having to transfer it to U.S. truckers in the border area. This "eliminate trucking transfer" initiative would lower cost on producers producing goods in Mexico and likely lower cost on american consumers of those goods. Not only would this initiatve help the country of Mexico in this crisis time with their war with the Drug cartels but also it would bring bilateral commerce between the U.S. and our only southern border neighbor, Mexico, into the modern age. By all means implement this initiative in a slow manner like over ten years so that the number of U.S. truckers losing their job over this initiative is small. To end this initiative like the Omnibus bill does is bad public policy and demonstrates clearly that the present White House and leaders of the Democratic caucuses in Congress are biased toward unions and the bias has risen to the level where it causes them to fail to fulfill their duty to the American people.