It looked like Congress was close to an agreement on funding the government and avoiding default on Thursday, but negotiations fell apart yesterday. And as Republicans abandoned their insistence on defunding Obamacare, Democrats made demands of their own, insisting that Republicans agree to end the sequester, the across-the-board cuts from last time we were about to go over the fiscal cliff that have actually worked to curb government spending. [Read more…]
Due to a stalemate between Congress and the Obama administration, automatic spending cuts went into effect to the tune of $85 billion. This so-called “sequester” of funds was predicted to have dire effects, curbing important government services such as air traffic control and devastating our military. Actually, hardly any of those dire predictions came to pass. The Washington Post has an interesting story about how agencies moved money around and cut nonessential spending to keep the worst from happening. The story includes a specific list of the 46 predictions and what happened with them. [Read more…]
Charles Krauthammer is another candidate for best sequester commentary:
“The worst-case scenario for us,” a leading anti-budget-cuts lobbyist told The Post, “is the sequester hits and nothing bad really happens.”
Think about that. Worst case? That a government drowning in debt should cut back by 2.2 percent — and the country survives. That a government now borrowing 35 cents of every dollar it spends reduces that borrowing by two cents “and nothing bad really happens.” Oh, the humanity!
A normal citizen might think this a good thing. For reactionary liberalism, however, whatever sum our ever-inflating government happens to spend today (now double what Bill Clinton spent in his last year) is the Platonic ideal — the reduction of which, however minuscule, is a national calamity.
Or damn well should be. Otherwise, people might get the idea that we can shrink government and live on. [Read more…]
From Peter Wehner:
In the Great Sequestration Debate, here’s what we know: (a) The president has paternity of an idea he now characterizes as a brutal and senseless assault on America. (b) The president and his then-chief of staff, Jack Lew, misled the public about their role in giving birth to the sequester idea. (c) House Republicans have twice passed legislation to avoid the sequester cuts with carefully targeted ones, but Senate Democrats refused to act. (d) Mr. Obama has brushed off a Republican plan to give him flexibility to allocate the $85 billion in spending cuts, which makes no sense if the president wants to replace reckless cuts with responsible ones. [Read more…]