Friday, March 01, 2013

The Armageddon that isn't

So now the terrible doom that Obama has been jetting around the country to warn against is upon us. And we're already seeing a lot of Armageddon fatigue around the country as even reporters are skeptical that the sequester cuts aren't as doomtastic as Obama has been claiming.

Perhaps people will realize that the Republicans aren't the ones to blame for this current end-of-the world budgetary catastrophe. As Charles Krauthammer writes today the Democrats could clearly have avoided the doom that Obama has been warning us about.
After all, the sequester is just one-half of 1 percent of GDP. It amounts to 1.4 cents on the dollar of nondefense spending, 2 cents overall.

Because of this year’s payroll tax increase, millions of American workers have had to tighten their belts by precisely 2 percent. They found a way. Washington, spending $3.8 trillion, cannot? If so, we might as well declare bankruptcy now and save the attorneys’ fees.

The problem with sequestration, of course, is that the cuts are across the board and do not allow money to move between accounts. It’s dumb because it doesn’t discriminate.

Fine. Then change the law. That’s why we have a Congress. Discriminate. Prioritize. That’s why we have budgets. Except that the Democratic Senate hasn’t passed one in four years. And the White House, which proposed the sequester in the first place, had 18 months to establish rational priorities among accounts — and did nothing.

When the GOP House passed an alternative that cut where the real money is — entitlement spending — President Obama threatened a veto. Meaning, he would have insisted that the sequester go into effect — the very same sequester he now tells us will bring on Armageddon.

Good grief. The entire sequester would have reduced last year’s deficit from $1.33 trillion to $1.24 trillion. A fraction of a fraction. Nonetheless, insists Obama, such a cut is intolerable. It has to be “balanced” — i.e., largely replaced — by yet more taxes.
The Wall Street Journal points out how ridiculous the President's position is as he rejects being given the authority to fine-tune the required budget cuts.
But in any case House Republicans are offering to give Mr. Obama even more flexibility, yet the President won't take yes for an answer.

Mull that one over: The President wants to deny himself and his executive branch the authority to do less harm. Don't stop me before I kill again.
Why wouldn't he want that authority? It can only be because he refuses to have any budget cuts whatsoever in case the public realizes that there is plenty of fat to cut from the budget. Or if the public realizes that the real problem is with the mandatory spending part of the budget, not discretionary half. And Obama maintains his real goal - to raise taxes without any responsible adjustment of the budget at all.