Automatic spending cuts provide cover but they should not be a substitute for judgment …

March 9, 2013

While I am not necessarily in favor of automatic spending cuts or the sequester, as its being called, they seem to be the only way to get the government to spend less money.

But just because the cuts are automatic does not mean that there cannot be some judgment in making specific cuts.

But to make a point, the administration has cut off White House tours.

That’s just like at the state level when the first thing they do is close the parks.

(Ironically, in California the closing of parks or the threatened closures were bogus because the parks department was hiding millions of surplus dollars in its budget.)

To punish the people or to show how much the revenue is needed they hit the general public where it hurts.

I just heard someone say on a news program that the airport that serves Disneyland in Florida is being shut down, or may shut down, due to federal budget cuts. And I also read that small airports all over the country are in danger of losing their federal subsidies. Now I don’t know how important that airport near Disneyland in Florida is but it likely handles a lot more passengers and airplanes than ones in small villages across the nation that are also government subsidized. There has to be a priority somewhere.

With the military: we’re certainly not going to cut off the supply of ammunition to troops in war zones I would hope. And if there is a weapons program that we vitally need for our national defense I would hope it would get some type of priority. But maybe we can cut some of the taxpayer-paid perks at the officers’ club first.

Unemployment insurance, food stamps, home heating oil programs, and all types of needed services are in danger, and to make a point, government agencies will likely cut in such a way that the public will feel the quickest and most intense pain.

Automatic spending cuts provide cover for members of both houses of congress who don’t have to explain to their lobbyist benefactors (along with other constituents) why some of the largesse is being taken away.

Hey, whatever works, but that is not an excuse for lack of judgment or failing to set reasonable priorities.