Most Americans are skeptical of the doom-and-gloom arguments against the sequester

You never know with Congress and the White House, but it seems to me there’s an excellent chance the sequestration cuts of $85 billion are going to happen on Friday. The president’s out there pitching against it, so is Rep. Rob Bishop. However, jaded Republicans, who were rolled last New Year’s with a deal that included several hundred billion-plus dollars in tax hikes, seem to be warming to the idea of the sequester. 

It’s pretty simple why so many Americans aren’t worked up over a reduction in deficit increase of $85 billion. They know our leaders spend way too much money (we have a debt of more than $16 trillion) and they figure if we can’t trim $85 billion a year from our budgets, then we might as well call it quits and tattoo the words “waiting to be like Greece” on our foreheads. Most of us realize that President Obama’s administration has created too much debt. We know that President Bush’s previous administration caused too much debt. It’s gotta stop. They look at a Congress and a White House that created the sequester deal and is now trying to weasel out of it.

Despite our pols’ dysfunctional behavior, we probably should ditch the sequestration. It’s a bad plan that was cynically hatched in order to be ditched later. Its emphasis on cuts to defense and “non-essential” spending are the wrong areas in which to trim the budget. Instead, Congress and the president should implement tax reform that closes loopholes and tax breaks, as well as begin serious entitlements reform. A good outline toward doing the latter is found here. Also, a column on the benefits of tax reform is here.

The doom-and-gloom, Chicken Little arguments from our pols need to stop. Only the biggest sycophants to either party are listening. Most Americans see the government being run into the ground by debt and they are through listening to pols who keep piling up deficits and debt.

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11 Responses to Most Americans are skeptical of the doom-and-gloom arguments against the sequester

  1. Steve says:

    I don’t know if the sequester doom-and-gloomers are right or if the sequester Pollyannas are. And I don’t care. I think most Americans are more like me: sick to death of the political brinksmanship that’s come to define Washington DC. I’m far less bothered by the debt than I am by the politicians. I do suspect if we could get the latter to behave like adults, then they could start doing something constructive about the former. However, I don’t believe there’s really any way to get today’s politicians to act like grown-ups.

    • Brent Glines says:

      Well, as far as behaving like adults is concerned, at least the House has passed multiple budgets that seek to address our fiscal woes. The Senate, controlled by Democrats, has failed to do so in spite of laws requiring them to do so. We do have adults in Congress, but apparently they do not belong to the Democratic Party.

      • Steve says:

        Oh, Brent. If you think House Republicans have acted like adults, you’ve got some serious growing-up to do.

        • Brent Glines says:

          Where is a budget proposed by Democrats? Anyone? Bueller?

          It’s all relative. You may not think House Republicans have acted like adults, but they make Senate Democrats look like toddlers. When the Senate can’t manage to produce a budget, as required by law, for over 4 years, that’s significant.

    • Doug Gibson says:

      What would scare pols is to see colleagues in previously safe seats lose re-election. Unfortunately, that’s not happening.

  2. D. Michael Martindale says:

    Let them happen!

  3. rls says:

    – it’ll never happen, but is the best possible tax reform solution — go to the website and read about it –

  4. ScottH says:

    Sequestration was indeed cynically designed to be distasteful enough that politicians would replace it. But it doesn’t look like that will happen. All of the plans that could logically replace it appear at this moment to be less politically feasible and/or palatable than accepting sequestration itself. Using a figurative meat cleaver to cut spending may be less desirable than using the scalpel method. But the former can happen while the latter probably can’t. And some cutting is better than none.

  5. Tom says:

    This “Sequestration” biz is nothing compared to what very well might happen to Utah’s economy during the next round of BRAC.

    The notion that HAFB is somehow immune to getting closed down is pollyannish to say the least. Having the test range close by seems to be what a lot of folks think will save the base, but it sure won’t have anything to do with saving the Depot Maintenance functions which employ the many thousands of civilians who make up the bulk of the work force there.

    Although BRAC is supposedly nonpolitical, I think that is foolish. Everything that has to do with government and spending is political – especially these days. The close calls Hill has survived in the past was due to the diligent and intelligent cooperative efforts of the statesmen we used to have represent us – primarily Congressman Hansen, Senators Bennett and Hatch back when he actually had a backbone and some influence with both parties.

    So here sits Utah with a congressional delegation that never misses a chance to slam the Democrats and especially the President. We have Sen Lee who seems to take some perverse pleasure in taking a totally obstructionist position on virtually every single thing the President proposes. Obstruction for obstructions sake. Then we have a State Legislature who spends a huge amount of their time coming up with more obstructionist BS and endless message bills – none of which really mean anything but “look at us thumbing our noses at Obama and the evil Democrats”.

    Well, the next BRAC round is going to happen under those evil Democrats rather any one likes it or not. Who from Utah is really going to have any juice to defend HAFB when that happens. Who is going to be the negotiators and compromisers when the base’s Depot Maintenance function is on the line and headed toward Tinker AFB or Werner Robbins AFB? Lee?, Jason?, the new guy Stewart? Bishop? or our own newly intimidated by the Tea Party Hatch? All never miss a beat in throwing obstacles in front of the government, and none of them have a lick of influence with the powers that be in DC who will make these decisions.

    My guess is that HAFB will lose the vast majority of its current jobs as a result of these fools in congress and the State Legislature. Tens of thousands of jobs and hundreds of millions of dollars lost to our economy Utah will be damaged economically in a very significant way for a very long time – thanks to these petty fools who are supposed to represent us – but instead only represent the lunatic fringe of the Tea Party.

    Yes indeed folks, this Sequestration biz is but a drop in the bucket to what could very well be just around the corner thanks to our great congressional delegation who only know how to say no…

  6. Dovie says:

    While not really too burned up over sequestration myself, it’s pretty obvious that is the very dumbest way to cut costs. So dumb that both sides assumed they could blackmail the other into doing something different.

    It is going to take time to bring down the deficit because it’s easy to run up bills and harder to pay them off.

    I am not opposed to the consumption tax idea but feel it’s impractical to think the existing tax structure will be swept away and replaced with FairTax at one wave of the hand. Also, when you make exceptions for food, housing and utilities, which is almost guaranteed (to help families), a consumption tax looks a lot like a luxury tax. The idea that we will do a FairTax that will be 15% is not even logical, especially for those burnt up about balancing the budget. It would be more like 40%.

    The base closure point is an excellent one.

    All the current laws promote young families and marriage. Men may not like to pay for some kid’s CHIP subsidy, but working women may not especially enjoy paying for his kids and his 2 for 1 social security deal, where his stay at home wife gets paid because she was married. I’m sure all the divorced women enjoy paying widow’s SS benefits, too, because we all recognize that the life insurance payout just isn’t enough. Life isn’t fair, but the typical Utahns that do the most complaining are already getting the best deal.

    All sequestration can possibly do is bring cuts home to Tea Party types who feel they deserve what they get and everyone else should be shot. Sequestration will kill the TP movement because this pseudo-libertarianism really is that small minded.

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