The Horse Sense Blog compares the nonsense in today's news with good ol' fashioned horse sense

“…I shall speak forth my sentiments freely and without reserve.… It is only in this way that we can hope to arrive at truth, and fulfill the great responsibility which we hold to God and our country. Should I keep back my opinions at such a time, through fear of giving offense, I should consider myself as guilty of treason towards my country, and of an act of disloyalty toward the Majesty of Heaven, which I revere above all earthly kings.” - Patrick Henry, March 23, 1775

"The further a society drifts from truth the more it will hate those who speak it." - George Orwell

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Monday, February 25, 2013

Ignore Sequestration, It Isn't The Real Problem

Here's the Nonsense:  The sequester must be dealt with immediately or America is going to suffer damage like we cannot imagine.  The President is right that our politicians must get together and solve this crisis by the end of the week before it's too late.

Here's the Horse Sense:  The sequester is not the big issue that people make it out to be.  The bigger issue is the Continuing Resolution coming up before the end of March, and bigger yet, is the budgeting process altogether.  That is the only way to fix our economic problems once and for all.

While everyone's talking about sequestration, the real issue is far bigger and lurking right around the corner.  The politicians in Washington will have to deal with a government shutdown by the end of March that is a much bigger issue.  While the sequestration will cause some minor cuts in the increases in spending, the Continuing Resolution needed by the end of March will have much bigger implications and impact. 

The GOP thinks this could be a benefit for them but we have to remember that these are the people who think they get a good deal from Obama when they give him what he wants.  

First, let's understand that the Continuing Resolution that they will have to pass will only carry through September, so it's not like this is any kind of long term solution to our spending problems.  Second, just like sequestration, this will only be about cutting the rate of growth in spending, not about cutting actual spending.  I'm sure it will do NOTHING to cut spending.

While there has been pressure on Republicans to leave sequestration alone and then for them to demand cuts on spending in the Continuing Resolution, the real issue is if they can stand up to the games the president plays.  

Right now President Obama has successfully painted a picture of the Republicans as being at fault for all that is wrong in America economically.  Does anyone think that Americans will see through his smoke screen and recognize him for what he is?  Does anyone think that the Republicans are actually capable of being able to turn a light on his phony claims and actions and get the American public to see the truth?  And remember, the mainstream media is busy carrying the water for the Democrats so it's not like they're going to help get the message out there.  

Many Republicans are hoping that Friday will come and the sequester will kick in and when not much really happens that they'll be able to point to it as an example of how the president cries wolf.  But unlike the little boy who cried wolf and wasn't believed, this president is believed and not even questioned.  The media, and by extension the American people, don't seem to care whether what he says is true or not. They want someone to blame for their economic ills and the Democrats and their media (that's the mainstream media) have screamed louder and longer than the Republicans can resist and thereby won the argument by default.

The Democrats will continue ridiculous arguments like that reported by about Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood talking to Candy Crowley on CNN last week:  "Air travel will go haywire if the sequester cuts take place, LaHood warns, but Crowley notes that (a) even with the sequester, the FAA will have more money in this year’s budget than last year’s, (b) the cuts bring the FAA back to their 2008 funding level in real dollars, and (c) the level of domestic flights has dropped by 27% since 9/11."   

The fact is that the media buy the administration's stories and unquestioningly support and repeat them as fact.  No one questions them, or only when (as Rush Limbaugh correctly says) someone commits a random act of journalism.  

America's economic problems will never be fixed until we all learn to question what we're told, demand answers and accountability, and elect leaders who will serve the American citizens and replace our baseline budgeting system with a zero based budgeting system.  

For those unfamiliar with zero based budgeting, the term simply means that each year when you do a new budget every item must be justified. No item
is exempt and no item is automatically accepted as being funded under the new budget. This is the way that you make sure you are spending your money wisely. 

Congress does not do this. They use a system called baseline budgeting that was put into effect through the Congressional Budget Act of 1974 and amended in 1987 when Congress changed the baseline to automatically keep pace with inflation. In using baseline budgeting Congress automatically assumes that every item in the federal budget will be an expenditure again the subsequent year. And ironically, they also assume that every item will get an increase in expense, so their decision isn’t whether or not the expense should continue. In fact, it’s not even whether or not the expense should be increased. They assume it will be an expense and that it will be increased. Their decision each year is how much to increase it. When they talk about spending cuts, they are really talking about how much less they will increase the expense than they had planned, not about actually reducing the amount of current spending.

Our elected political leaders know nothing about cutting spending.  The politicians in Washington who support the baseline budgetary process (which is most of them) and don't demand that a zero-based budgeting process be implemented should be fired by the voters and replaced with true leaders.  Until and unless we do we will continue to see the demise of America's economy which will ultimately result in the collapse of the United States… and it's not too far away.