Discriminating Against the Indiscriminate
There’s a lot of discrimination in the air this week … but strangely it’s against indiscriminat-ion-ism-osity. In fact, the only thing that Republicans and Democrats seem to agree on is that whatever happens on March 1 the cuts forced by the sequestration should not be indiscriminate. Mitch McConnell:
“I would be happy to give the president more flexibility and rely on the agency heads”
So what does everyone have against indiscriminate spending cuts? I for one am very comfortable letting spending cuts be across the board.
For one, Federal Budgets are increased every year indiscriminately. That’s how budgeting works. What did you get last year? add inflation? here’s your new budget. And remember that’s what we’re talking about here budget increases and not actual cuts. Here’s a good summary of why it’s called “sequestration”.
Second, Congress does plenty of discriminating already … it’s called discretionary spending and it’s part of the reason we’re in this mess.
Third, and most important, is that indiscriminate cutting is probably the only way we can cut. “Targeted cuts” is code for never gonna happen. The minute a committee is set up to debate what should be cut lines will be drawn, interests will be entrenched, and the cuts will cross that barrier from political reality to political fantasy.