LJWorld.com weblogs Science Becoming Religion
The Children in the White House and Congress
President Barack Obama's approach to the spending cut issue is like a child who suggests that if his family needs to reduce expenses it should stop buying fruits and vegetables while continuing to purchase cookies and potato chips. Obama and his playmates in Congress have responded to the issue of cutting spending by proposing elimination of essential spending such as meat inspectors instead of nonessential spending such as grants to local governments for purely local matters.
Instead of trying to work with Congress to arrange some type of compromise, Obama is running around like a chicken with its head cut off squawking for somebody to do something. Obama needs to be taking care of business in Washington instead of outside of Washington giving speeches.
Both Obama and Congressional Republicans are ignoring the nature of the budget problem. They remind me of a beer commercial except instead of crying "great taste" or "less filling" they are crying "more spending" and "less taxes".
The solution to the budget deficit will require a combination of spending cuts and tax increases. At the very least congress should suspend all tax credit programs and all non-education or highway construction grants to state and local governments. Tax credit programs are of dubious constitutionality because they allow individuals to spend what is essential federal tax revenue without congressional approval of specific spending decisions.
Most grants to state and local programs are of limited economic value. Intercity highway construction provides significant economic benefits as does education spending.
Layoffs in agencies such as meat inspectors and air security would hurt the economy and reduce federal tax revenue which would make the deficit worse. However, layoffs in regulatory agencies such as the EPA wouldn't hurt the economy. Layoffs at EPA might benefit the economy considering the EPA's continuing efforts to eliminate jobs in the coal industry.
Congress should eliminate funding for climate research. The people claim that carbon dioxide causes global warming insist that climate science is settled. If that is so then there is no need to spend money on further research. Congress should only fund research to learn new things. The only justifiable reason to fund climate research is to find
Congress cannot cut enough money from the budget to eliminate the deficit without adversely affecting the economy. Tax increases will also be needed. The easiest way to increase taxes would be to have the payroll tax apply to all income received from an employer up to and including the million plus salaries of corporate CEO's and professional athletes and entertainers.
Republicans claim that the rich would use excess income to create jobs. However, only business owners would use their money in that way. Increasing taxes on corporate employees won't affect job creation because employees don't use their incomes to create jobs.
Our system of government depends upon the President to provide leadership. Unfortunately, President Dunseld seems incapable of providing the leadership necessary to deal with the budget crisis. To use and expression from the sixties: "Obama is part of the problem rather than part of the solution. [NOTE: "Dunseld" is a term used at Starfleet Academy to describe a part with no useful function.]