February 23, 2013

As the Sequester Dominates the Weekend Political Talk.....

Marc Comtois

....keep this in mind.

1) There are no cuts as regular people define them. Just a reduction in the planned for "regular" growth that Washington, D.C. cooks into the budget pie year after year.

2) The sequester was President Obama's idea in the first place. Bob Woodward:

My extensive reporting for my book “The Price of Politics” shows that the automatic spending cuts were initiated by the White House and were the brainchild of Lew and White House congressional relations chief Rob Nabors — probably the foremost experts on budget issues in the senior ranks of the federal government.

Obama personally approved of the plan for Lew and Nabors to propose the sequester to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.). They did so at 2:30 p.m. July 27, 2011, according to interviews with two senior White House aides who were directly involved.

Nabors has told others that they checked with the president before going to see Reid. A mandatory sequester was the only action-forcing mechanism they could devise. Nabors has said, “We didn’t actually think it would be that hard to convince them” — Reid and the Republicans — to adopt the sequester. “It really was the only thing we had. There was not a lot of other options left on the table.”

A majority of Republicans did vote for the Budget Control Act that summer, which included the sequester. Key Republican staffers said they didn’t even initially know what a sequester was — because the concept stemmed from the budget wars of the 1980s, when they were not in government.

Comments, although monitored, are not necessarily representative of the views Anchor Rising's contributors or approved by them. We reserve the right to delete or modify comments for any reason.

The best retort to Pres. Obama that I have heard came from Herman Cain -- yes, that Herman Cain -- who pointed out recently that in January we all took a 2% hit when the payroll tax went up. Why, Mr. Cain asked, can't the government absorb the sequester when we've all had to do the same (not to mention increased fuel prices)?

Posted by: brassband at February 23, 2013 9:07 AM

Even though it would negatively impact me and my area, I'm 100% in favor of the sequester cuts. I don't see any other practical way to meaningfully rein in federal spending. Military spending is easily 2 to 4 times what it should be, and it's growing all the time in a way that is not at all proportional to the actual threats to our nation. My distinct impression from 1-2 hours on the metro listening to Pentagon employees is that most of those thousands of people earning healthy six figures don't do anything useful at all.

The sequester is an intellectually painful solution because everyone in government knows who the deadweight employees are and where the money is being wasted (particularly on unnecessary contractors), but federal labor laws and bureaucratic mandates prevent anyone from doing anything about it. The solution therefore has to be something "bigger" than all of us.

Posted by: Dan at February 23, 2013 9:26 AM

@brassband... the sad part is the gov't cut isn't even 2% cut, it's much closer to 1%.

Posted by: jgardner at February 23, 2013 10:12 AM

The arrogant Hussein, Dems and a lot of Repubs want ALL of our money. They will find a way to take it. The elitisit govt. is bankrupting the country under the guise of "helping us" while in reality they are helping themselves like ants at a picnic. An increase is a "cut" in elitist parlance. This from the same people who exempt themselves from laws they enact and vote themselves a pay raise. America...we hardly knew ya.

Posted by: ANTHONY at February 23, 2013 11:39 AM

You rayzist, anti-science, women-hating xenophobes are too dumb to understand that a 2.5% cut that's not really a cut is going to be THE END OF THE WORLD as the carbon heated seas rise 60 feet and drown us all!!!!!

Posted by: Tommy Cranston at February 23, 2013 12:01 PM

I do not see why it cannot be handled thusly. The Secretary is ordered to cut by a specific amount. He/she then determines where the cuts can be most easily obtained. Orders are then cut and filter down to appropriate department heads to cut by a specified amount. Further decisions are made as to efficiency and the orders are then passed down. I am sure a lot of department heads have deadwood they would like to cut. All I hear is an upgrade of "we will have to let police and firemen go".

I am reminded of passing through the Norfolk County Registry of Deeds some years ago. I walked passed a door reading "Comparing Room". Taken by the term, I looked in to see two women. One was reading a photocopy to the other who was "comparing" it to the original. Perhaps necessary when "copies" were hand written, but this was the 1980's. I long ago learned, if I suspected alteration, to place one copy over the other and then hold it to the light.

Posted by: Warrington Faust at February 23, 2013 1:22 PM

" There are no cuts as regular people define them."

So why does the President say that, immediately upon the sequestration taking place, police and firefighters and teachers will get laid off and we're all going to die (paraphrasing) from rotten meat b/c the inspectors all had to be laid off???

"You rayzist, anti-science, women-hating xenophobes are too dumb to understand that a 2.5% cut that's not really a cut is going to be THE END OF THE WORLD as the carbon heated seas rise 60 feet and drown us all!!!!!"

Heh. Only one step removed from the sort of hysterical, non sequitur argument that one hears too often from some on the left.

Posted by: Monique at February 23, 2013 6:33 PM

I'm with Dan. I will take a hit...but it is needed and only a first step. What I and many object to is the lack of prioritization. This "peanut butter spread" is the cowards way out. We need leaders to fund what is needed vice what isn't. However, courage is a rare commodity in DC. .

Posted by: Mike678 at February 25, 2013 12:26 PM
Post a comment

Remember personal info?

Important note: The text "http:" cannot appear anywhere in your comment.