Saturday, September 24, 2011

Cut spending . . .But where, and How Much?

The Republicans, since taking power in the House of Representatives, have become the poster-party for internecine faction-fighting (also in the growing Republican minority in the Senate).

To close widening expenditure gaps in the federal budget, either the government must spend less or tax more.

"Tax more" is out of the question for Republicans, all the more so because they have cast any attempt to cut wasteful and immoral subsidies as a tax increase.

"Spend less" will mean cutting the budget to the bone, and then further. Only huge Republican majorities in both Houses of Congress with a like-minded President will ever hope of accomplishing such a task. Even if the Republicans swept the national elections, there is scant evidence that the GOP would abandon its tax-cut and spend ways, as it did in 2000 and 2005-2007.

Senator Tom Coburn, who is not afraid to tackle sacred cows like Veteran's affairs, wants to end the $6 billion dollar subsidy for ethanol, a fruitless program wasting food resources better allocated to feeding people than lining gas interests with taxpayer money. Democrats are willing to join with him to stop this federal appropriation. Republican candidates for President, however, must be wary about cutting off a sacred subsidy to the state of Iowa, whose caucus will make or break a Presidential run in 2012.

Cut, cut, cut . . .everyone likes the heated rhetoric. But where, and how much? Those questions must be answered and implemented as soon as possible, regardless of current party affiliation.

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