Trump’s budget

Trump’s budget March 17, 2017

6629080867_016b010de5_zPresident Trump released his proposed budget.  It boosts defense spending, Veterans’ benefits, school choice, and homeland security.  But it dramatically slashes the State Department and the Environmental Protection Agency.

It cuts most agency’s appropriations and eliminates some of them completely.  See the list of agencies and programs that Trump’s budget would eliminate entirely.

Among the entities that would be zeroed out are the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

You can read the entire budget proposal here.

Congress, including its Republican members, are criticizing the “draconian” cuts.

Those Republicans have been talking for years about the need to cut the budget and to pare back all of the things our government has become involved with, at great expense.  And yet this is the first Republican budget I can recall that actually made those changes.

Let me comment on one sacred cow that is being sacrificed:  the National Endowment for the Arts.  Some are saying, if the NEA ceases to exist, the arts will be doomed!  But the arts thrived before the NBA got started under the Johnson administration.  In fact, the arts were surely more interesting and even more experimental and controversial back then–think of surrealism, abstract expressionism, pop art, and you name the movement–when artists were competing for audiences rather than federal grants.

From Dave Boyer, Donald Trump budget benefits border security, military, veterans – Washington Times:

President Trump’s first budget called Thursday for a dramatic shift from the “soft power” diplomacy of the Obama era to a “hard power” military buildup, cutting the State Department by 28 percent in a slashing of foreign aid, boosting Pentagon spending by 10 percent and budgeting more than $4 billion to start construction of a border wall with Mexico.

The spending blueprint that Mr. Trump submitted to Congress would provide more money for agencies responsible for national security and border enforcement, as well as veterans’ benefits and school choice programs.

Nearly everything else in the federal government, including the Environmental Protection Agency, the Department of Housing and Urban Development and the IRS, is targeted for cuts.

Federal funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, long a target of conservative ire, would be eliminated. The CPB received $445 million in taxpayer dollars in fiscal 2016.

Some of President Obama’s cherished programs, such as federal support for alternative energy and climate change initiatives, are on the chopping block. The EPA is slated for a cut of 31 percent.

Agencies slated for cuts include the Department of Health and Human Services, down 18 percent; Agriculture, down 21 percent; Labor, dropping 21 percent; Commerce, down 16 percent; and Education, down 14 percent. The Department of Veterans Affairs would see a 6-percent increase and the Homeland Security Department’s budget would rise 7 percent.

[Keep reading. . .] 

Illustration from, Flickr, Creative Commons License

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