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February 07, 2013

Let it Burn: The Sequester Is The Only Thing In DC Actually Cutting Spending

I think @benk84 linked this this morning. I need a post, so I'll link it again.

Fear not. As always in Washington when there is talk of cutting spending, most of the hysteria is baseless. The nearby table from the House Budget Committee shows that programs are hardly starved for money. In Mr. Obama's first two years, while private businesses and households were spending less and deleveraging, federal domestic discretionary spending soared by 84% with some agencies doubling and tripling their budgets.

Spending growth has slowed since Republicans took the House in 2011. Still, from 2008-2013 federal discretionary spending has climbed to $1.062 trillion from $933 billion—an increase of 13.9%. Domestic programs grew by 16.6%, much faster than the 11.6% for national security.

Transportation funding alone climbed to $69.5 billion in 2010 with the stimulus from $10.7 billion in 2008, and in 2013 the budget is still $17.9 billion, or about 67% higher. Education spending more than doubled in Mr. Obama's first two years and is up 18.6% to $68.1 billion from 2008-2013.

But wait—this doesn't include the recent Hurricane Sandy relief bill. Less than half of that $59 billion is going to storm victims while the rest is a spending end-run around the normal appropriations process. Add that money to the tab, and total discretionary domestic spending is up closer to 30% from 2008-2013. The sequester would claw that back by all of about 5%.

More troublesome are the cuts in defense, but for security not economic reasons. The sequester cuts the Pentagon budget by 7%. This fits Mr. Obama's evident plan to raid the military to pay for social programs like ObamaCare.

...

The most disingenuous White House claim is that the sequester will hurt the economy. Reality check: The cuts amount to about 0.5% of GDP. The theory that any and all government spending is "stimulus" has been put to the test over the last five years, and the result has been the weakest recovery in 75 years and trillion-dollar annual deficits.

I don't care, Obama's my dad. Chris Rock says so.


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posted by Ace at 05:42 PM

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