To believe the President is to believe that a 2.4% reduction in the rate of spending growth for defense and non-discretionary spending will hurl the US and the world into financial calamity. And apparently, conservatives across the board, from politicians to media, believe this to be true. All I hear is how deep the cuts are and how significant their impact will be. Not only from the President and his minions, but from supposed conservatives too. Maybe it’s too much to expect an independent thought, but it would be great to hear someone argue the following points. First, the “cuts” amount to 2.4% of the annual Federal budget. It illustrates nearly total economic illiteracy to believe that “cuts” of that size will cripple the US economy. Yet that’s what we’re hearing from all sides. Second, they’re not really “cuts.” The sequester implements a reduction in the rate of growth. Federal government spending will still increase under sequester, just at a lower rate. Third, the Federal government doesn’t pay for most first responders. Policemen, firemen, first aid, etc. are paid by our local governments. Maybe politicians and media folks should have paid closer attention in civics class. Fourth, it’s ridiculous to argue that the Federal government does not need to be reduced by a paltry 2.4%. In the real world, where most of us live and work, changes in economic conditions (like a recession) require us to change. Businesses must cut expenses to survive. And sometimes that means people will be fired. Our Federal government is bloated, and could do with across-the-board cuts, to every expense. 2.4% is nothing. Finally, this was the President’s idea. Make him own it and live with the consequences.
I wish a Conservative leader or newscaster would make the case for the sequester. While the President wants to scare everyone into believing the sky is falling, if March 1 comes and the sequester is implemented, life will go on without noticeable change. It’s time for Republican leaders to hold steady and not blink. The short and long-term repercusions will be negligable or non-existent. This is one worth fighting for.