Posted by: SWL | April 7, 2011

Hurt More By Shutdown or Spending Cuts?

Two hours ago President Obama held a briefing following a budget meeting with Vice-President Biden, Democrat Senate Majority Leader Reid and Republican Speaker of the House Boehner. The president said they made “some progress” and the issues separating the two parties “had narrowed”. It is difficult to believe they are still quibbling over such small details.

President Obama lamented all the people who would be hurt during a government shutdown. I have to agree that people would be hurt. In fact, more people would probably be directly affected by a shutdown than would be inconvenienced by the funding cuts in the riders in the House-passed bill:
* “non-essential” federal workers
* concessionaires in the National Parks
* soldiers and sailors
* citizens of Washington, D.C. who would have to live without services such as trash pickup
*those who need their tax refund right away

On the other hand, if the Republican spending cuts get the president‘s signature, the average American would not see financial loss or reduced access to services:
* Keeping the natural compound carbon dioxide off the EPA pollutant list would save American industries money, probably saving jobs. (Limiting industrial emissions of CO2 has not been proven to have any effect on global warming.)
* Women would still have access to abortions; Planned Parenthood will just make less profit without federal funds (see previous post).
* Green energy generating plants could still be built, but will need to find regular financing instead of government guaranteed loans.
* The poor would still have access to health care through Medicaid.
* National Public Radio could continue to broadcast, but would have to find sponsors for their programming besides the government.

The American people want responsible financial reform. Cutting a few billion dollars in a budget of trillions is not responsible, nor is it reform. The Democrats are blaming the Republicans for including specific programs to cut. To have a smaller budget you must cut something. The Democrats have not come up with a detailed plan of their own. The Republican controlled House has passed three specific continuing resolutions in the past 6 weeks and the current legislation to fund government through the fiscal year.

Each time the Republicans agree to restore funding for an item in response to Democrats’ demands, Americans lose. But we win with every dollar cut.

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