Shame and Sequestration

rush3Yesterday, the Godfather of Conservative Talk Radio, Rush Limbaugh, while speaking on the subject of sequestration, said,

Ladies and gentlemen, for the first time in my life, I am ashamed of my country. To be watching all of this, to be treated like this, to have our common sense and intelligence insulted the way it’s being insulted? It just makes me ashamed. Seriously, man. Here we get worked up over $44 billion. That’s the total amount of money that will not be spent that was scheduled to be spent this year. In truth, we’re gonna spend more this year than we spent last year.

We’re just not gonna spend as much as was projected. It’s all baseline budgeting. There is no real cut below a baseline of zero. There just isn’t. Yet here they come, sucking us in, roping us in. Panic here, fear there: Crisis, destruction, no meat inspection, no cops, no teachers, no firefighters, no air traffic control. I’m sorry, my days of getting roped into all this are over. We have the media playing along with all this. The ruling class of both parties play along with all this. It’s insulting. I don’t know how else to describe it.

I’m into my 25th year.

I can’t tell you the number of times this has happened. This hit me yesterday. I’ve said the same things over and over for 25 years. Whether the Clinton presidency or the Obama presidency, whether it’s a Pelosi speakership or Tom Foley (who was speaker when I started), it’s the same stuff. It’s the same threats. It’s the same arguments over and over. Nothing ever changes! We just keep spending more money. We create more dependency, we get more and more irresponsible from one crisis to the next, all of them manufactured.

Except for the real crisis, which nobody ever addresses, and that is: We can’t afford any of this.

What’s happening here, folks, is we are being played for fools and being suckered — suckered into supporting the never-ending expansion of government, the wholesale destruction of the private economy. Everybody who joins in this debate under the premise that Obama puts forth, as well as debating the politics of this nonsense, is just being used to cover up what’s actually going on. Now, what’s going on is no great conspiracy. It’s no mystery. We’re spending much more money than we have.

The government is getting inexorably larger.

It’s less and less efficient at accomplishing anything. We’re creating more and more dependents. We’re robbing people of their dignity and humanity and of their opportunity to realize their dreams as they turn their lives over to the government. It’s like a never-ending cycle. The government makes the private sector smaller. There are fewer job opportunities. There’s less money in the private sector, less opportunity to accrue wealth. Income taxes and others threaten to go higher; they do go higher.

It all adds up to the government growing, the private sector shrinking, freedom being lost ever so slowly, and nobody ever talks about stopping this. Everybody gets sucked into debating the crisis of the moment according to the terms of the moment, without any context and relationship to the past and a knowable future and a relevant perusal of the present. These little debates take place within their own little universe, as though they’re unaffected by things that have happened in the past.

So if  sequestration actually happens, will the world as we know it come to an end? Hardly.

Back in September of 2012, fcw.com posted the following information:

The Obama administration has released its mandated report on how sequestration may be implemented, outlining in a nearly 400-page document detailed plans for cutting federal spending by $1.2 trillion.

The Office of Management and Budget released the report Sept. 14, a week later than the deadline set by the Sequestration Transparency Act. It includes line-by-line detail on more than 1,200 budget accounts, breaking down what is exempt from sequestration and what’s not.

Per the report, sequestration is estimated to result in a 9.4 percent cut in non-exempt defense discretionary funding, and 8.2 percent in non-defense, non-exempt discretionary funding. It would also cut 2 percent to Medicare, 7.6 percent to other non-exempt non-defense mandatory programs, and 10 percent to non-exempt, mandatory defense programs.

In the report and in a conference call with reporters, senior administration officials underscored their opposition to sequestration, which comes from the Budget Control Act of 2011. A “supercommittee” was chosen to hammer out agreed-on cuts, and when it failed to do so near the end of 2011, sequestration became the next step.

The last time America experienced a government shutdown was in 1995, when

…A wily Clinton politically outmaneuvered then-Speaker Newt Gingrich to turn the 20-day shutdown into a bruising PR defeat for the year-old Republican majority.

While Clinton had to eventually sacrifice on substance and put forward a budget that reflected much of what Gingrich and the Republicans wanted, he had set the narrative for his reelection campaign the next year: Clinton the moderate versus the radical Republicans in Congress.

That media narrative, combined with independent Ross Perot siphoning away mostly Republican votes in swing states, helped Clinton capture an 8-point victory in November of 1996.

Just who is responsible for Sequestration?

“The sequester is not something that I’ve proposed. It is something that Congress has proposed.”

— President Obama, in the third presidential debate, Oct. 22, 2012

The president seems to have a selective memory. Per The Washington Post:

The battle over raising the debt ceiling consumed Washington in the summer of 2011, with Republicans refusing to agree to raise it unless spending was cut by an equivalent amount. Obama pressed but failed to get an agreement on raising revenue as part of the package. Woodward’s book details the efforts to come up with an enforcement mechanism that would make sure the cuts took place — and virtually every mention shows this was a White House gambit.

Here is a short summary of how it went down:

The White House proposed the idea of a compulsory trigger, with Sperling calling it an “automatic sequester,” though initially it was to include tax revenue, not just spending cuts. Boehner was “nervous” about using it as a budget tool.

Once tax increases were off the table, the White House staff came up with a sequestration plan that only had spending cuts and sold Harry Reid on the idea.

This is the third reference to the White House putting together the plan for sequester. Granted, they are using language from a congressional law from a quarter-century earlier, but that seems a thin reed on which to say this came from Congress. In fact, Lew had been a policy advisor to then House Speaker Tip O’Neill from 1979 to 1987, and so was familiar with the law.

Republicans agreed to the White House proposal for a sequester.

Republicans had to work through the night to understand the White House proposal.

Of course, the Republicans eventually caved and agreed to raise the debt ceiling…and, so here we are.

Obama is trying to pull a Clinton. The problem is…he’s not Slick Willie.

He does not have the people skills, or the ruthlessness of a Hillary to back him up.

Additionally, the New Media was not as prevalent back then. 

Knowing the Republican Establishment, they will probably cave at the last minute, once again, on their quest to become Democrat-Lite.

Which would be a pretty stupid move, considering they did not come up with the idea in the first place.

Until He Comes, 

KJ

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3 Responses to “Shame and Sequestration”

  1. cmsinaz Says:

    *sigh* the squishy gop elite…don’t want the lsm to tear us down any further…we better do this…

  2. yoda Says:

    Everything’s got to be a crisis in the political world, so they can continue to spend money even though the S.O.S. has been sent that we are out.

  3. Gohawgs Says:

    Oh, we can count on the Spelunker of the House caving. It’s his nature…

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