March 13, 2013 | 6 comments
What do tonight’s looming budget cuts hold in store for America? We polled our contributors for the answer.
(Page 2 of 2)
Republicans also should talk about the sequester in very measured tones, calmly putting it in the perspective it deserves:
- Actual cuts to spending this year will be a bit more than 1% of the federal budget
- Defense spending will still increase by over $100 billion over the coming decade
- Federal spending and the national debt still grow enormously in the next decade
- Claims that sequestration is a massive cut to government spending rely on a definition of the word “cut” that no rational person would accept
- To avoid this sort of thing in the future, it is time to get serious about entitlement reform
The end of the world is upon us. Soon the federal government will start to increase its spending more slowly than originally planned. The numbers are terrifying. Spending will rise about $44 billion less this year due to sequestration, with future “cuts” bringing the total to $85 billion.
It is very difficult to see how our $15 trillion economy will survive this retrenchment, forcing government programs to make due on a more than $3.5 trillion federal budget. If this dangerous trend continues, federal spending will increase by $2 trillion over the next decade instead of $2 trillion.
By now it should be obvious that I am being sarcastic. But the media outrage about the sequester is wildly disproportionate to the numbers that are actually involved. We cannot seriously address Washington’s unfunded liabilities if non-cuts of this magnitude cannot even be contemplated.
So the question becomes “Is the GOP up to the challenge?” Speaker Boehner does yeoman work, but he is not a natural front guy. His recent op-ed in the Wall Street Journal was too conflicted as to whether the coming cuts were good or bad (right answer: good!). Some have suggested he needs a permanent, public spokesman like Jay Carney at the White House to make news, send and stay on message. Moreover, we need to see more of Paul Ryan and a bullpen of attractive, articulate men and women from the respective caucuses working different aspects of the fiscal argument. Is there a War Room set up for messaging and quick response? You get the idea.
This is a moment of truth for the party of Lincoln. It has to make sequestration work even if it goes the way of the Whigs who, by the way, had a greater impact on the ultimate shape of American government and society than the Jacksonians.
Looking for a surefire weight-loss plan? I’ve got a plan that is guaranteed to reduce your weight by one pound. Now, you may think this isn’t much of weight-loss plan, but maybe it’s worth doing anyway; after all, it can’t be a particularly grueling regimen if you’re only losing a pound, right? Here’s the weight-loss plan: We cut off your hand.
Okay, that’s a pretty bad idea. Not only does it leave you crippled, you’re just as fat as you were before. This might be the dumbest weight-loss plan imaginable. And it has a lot in common with sequestration, which might be the dumbest deficit-reduction plan imaginable. Its cuts fall disproportionately on the Department of Defense, and the across-the-board nature of the cuts mean hacking away at the defense budget not by closing unnecessary bases or canceling misguided procurements, but by delaying refueling and maintenance on carrier strike groups that should be deployed.
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?
H/T to National Review Online