President Obama is playing you again (and defiling his office as he does so).
President Obama told America yesterday morning that if the sequester goes through on March 1,
It will eviscerate job-creating investments in education and energy and medical research…. Emergency responders like the ones who are here today — their ability to help communities respond to and recover from disasters will be degraded. Border Patrol agents will see their hours reduced. FBI agents will be furloughed. Federal prosecutors will have to close cases and let criminals go. Air traffic controllers and airport security will see cutbacks, which means more delays at airports across the country. Thousands of teachers and educators will be laid off. Tens of thousands of parents will have to scramble to find childcare for their kids. Hundreds of thousands of Americans will lose access to primary care and preventive care like flu vaccinations and cancer screenings…. So these cuts are not smart. They are not fair. They will hurt our economy. They will add hundreds of thousands of Americans to the unemployment rolls. This is not an abstraction — people will lose their jobs. The unemployment rate might tick up again.”
This language is so far from reality that it defiled the White House like it has never been defiled before.
President Obama’s federal government is slated to spend $3.6 trillion this year. That is $3,600,000,000,000. The supposedly draconian sequester will reportedly cut that by $85 billion, which is just 2%. In fact, as Mark Levin pointed out last night, the actual cuts for this year from that level are $44 billion, which is 1% of the budget.
That won’t eviscerate anything. It won’t stop emergency responders from saving victims of disasters, won’t shut down the border patrol, won’t mean longer delays at airports without security or air traffic control, won’t lay off FBI agents, won’t stop criminal prosecutions, won’t terminate thousands of teachers, won’t leave hundreds of thousands of Americans without health care, won’t “add hundreds of thousands of Americans to the unemployment rolls.”
All that is paid for with just 2% of federal spending? Even after the fearsome sequester, federal discretionary spending will still be $60 billion more than in 2008. The government’s own Government Accountability Office (GAO) has identified $125 billion in government waste that can be cut without hurting anybody. Just as I said above about the effects of such tiny cuts.
What all the weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth means is that Obama and the Democrats think even cutting federal spending by 1% to 2% is the end of the world. But after the sequester goes through, only a few hundred Americans out of 300 million will even notice any effects at all.
And the sequester will help the economy, not hurt it. The sequester means the federal government will not drain another $1.2 trillion over the next 10 years out of the market economy, but leave it in the market to contribute to higher production. How does the federal government borrowing or taxing that money out of production in the private sector and using it to hire more bureaucrats, or to spend on more welfare for people who are not working and not producing, contribute to more jobs, more hiring, more economic growth, and more prosperity? It doesn’t, which is why Keynesian economics never works.
Obama’s retrograde, last century thinking is why the economy still hasn’t recovered from the last recession, almost 4 years after the recession was actually declared over. What we have is the worst recovery from a recession since the Great Depression, and maybe before. The other ten Presidents who suffered a recession during their terms since the Great Depression saw the economy roaring back within a year or two after the recession. But that was before Obama transformed our formerly world leading, sole superpower country into just another banana republic.
Too bad the sequester is not six times as large, which is the amount of spending cuts Paul Ryan will propose in his budget next month to zero out the deficit and balance the budget entirely in 10 years. Obama came back from his weekend golfing with his buddy Tiger Woods to complain yesterday that Congress hasn’t done its job. But what about Obama doing his job? He was required by law to produce this year’s budget proposal weeks ago. Where is it? Ya think he could have stayed home last weekend and made sure his work was done?
But Obama showed up yesterday complaining about what others haven’t done, saying we were facing that awful sequester because “Unfortunately, Congress didn’t compromise. They haven’t come together and done their jobs, and so as a consequence, we’ve got these automatic, brutal spending cuts that are poised to happen next Friday.”
The Republicans, however, have done their job. The House passed a bill designating $1.2 trillion in rationalized cuts over 10 years to replace the more arbitrary sequester cuts weeks ago. If President Obama and the Democrats disagreed with the Republican cuts, it was their job to pass what they wanted instead through the Senate. Then the two bills would have gone to a Conference Committee, which would have ironed out a compromise between the two bills.
But we got no action at all from the Democrats. Just as the Senate has not produced a budget in several years, it didn’t act on the Republican House bill on the sequester at all. That reflected the failure of leadership by President Obama, who did nothing to specify his own proposals, and push them through the Democrat majority Senate.
But Obama did produce a lot of talk, and badly confused and dishonest rhetoric. Obama said yesterday:
[S]o far at least the ideas that the Republicans have proposed ask nothing of the wealthiest Americans or biggest corporations, so the burden is all on first responders or seniors or middle-class families. [Or the $125 billion in identified government waste.] They double down, in fact, on the harsh, harmful cuts that I’ve outlined. They slash Medicare and investments that create good, middle-class jobs. And so far at least what they’ve expressed is a preference where they’d rather have these cuts go into effect than close a single tax loophole for the wealthiest Americans. Not one.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?