Thursday, February 10, 2011
Via Glenn Reynolds and Slate, two things are already crystal clear: (1) The GOP is not serious about reduced spending. (2) The GOP will attempt to use President Barack Obama as a foil in order to avoid actually moving towards limited government.
Reynolds links to a blog featuring a pie chart showing the parts of Obama's proposed $3.8 trillion budget: (1) to be paid for by taxation (i.e., money stolen from us now), (2) to be paid for by borrowing (i.e., money to be stolen from us later), and (3) proposed for cuts by the President. These are labeled "Obama's 2011 Budget," "Projected 2011 Budget Deficit," and "Obama's Proposed Cuts," respectively, and appear as blue, red, and green wedges of a pie chart. Needless to say, one must a zoom in closely see the green wedge of $775 million within the $3.8 trillion pie.
I immediately wondered what the proposed Republican cuts would look like on a similar chart, so I created one and have posted it at the right. (Click to enlarge.) At least one needn't zoom in to see that slice, but I find its yellow color strangely appropriate for reasons that will soon become apparent. (Without the cuts, the red portion of the graph representing debt becomes even larger.) For starters, the yellow slice is generous by more than a factor of two!
It is interesting to note where I obtained the $100 billion dollar figure for the GOP budget-shaving proposal: I learned from a short posting at Slate that Republicans in the House are already having problems agreeing even to this much!
House Republicans will unveil their plan to finance the government through Sept. 30 on Thursday, reports the New York Times. They hope to slash $40 billion from the budget by eliminating the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and AmeriCorps (among 58 other programs) and by making deep cuts in funding for the EPA, energy conservation programs, and high-speed rail investments. But at a closed-door meeting Wednesday night, some Republicans argued that the party needed to deliver on its promise to decrease the budget by $100 billion. "We said we would do it, and so we should," said Rep. Jeff Flake of Arizona. Not all Republicans were thrilled with the idea. [link omitted, bold in original]Americans concerned about government spending still have our work cut out for us, and we would even if the GOP did honor its election pledge. We cannot allow ourselves to be satisfied with a party that gloats over Obama's minuscule budget cuts -- and then proposes cuts that are "large" only by comparison.