Yesterday, the House passed the Sequester Reconciliation Act (H.R. 5662), which aims to prevent the sequeststration of defense spending scheduled to hit defense on Jan. 2nd, 2013, which would gut defense.
In response, liberals predictably launched a barrage of propaganda, falsely claiming that the House is letting the DOD completely off the hook while deeply cutting discretionary domestic programs. These claims are completely false, but they were predictable.
What was not predictable and is not understandable is why supposedly conservative websites such as Townhall.com reprint such despicable propaganda.
Instead of ordering one of its writers to produce a report on the issue, Townhall instead decided to cross-post (probably at a hefty fee) a completely false, despicable Associated Press smearjob.
“Guns for butter: House votes to stop Pentagon cuts”
and the sentence
“Turning their budget knife to domestic programs to protect the Pentagon, House Republicans on Thursday approved legislation cutting food stamps, benefits for federal workers and social services programs like day care for children and Meals on Wheels for the elderly.”
We can stop right there. It’s a sentence full of blatant lies deliberately designed to mislead the American people into thinking that the House wants to shield defense from any cuts while making deep cuts (“turning their knife”) in meals for children and the elderly. Nothing could be further from the truth.
The bill makes only small savings in those programs, and modest cuts in benefits for already-overly-generously-compensated federal workers, while cutting off some federal benefits from illegal aliens (who shouldn’t even be in the US) and abolishing Obama’s slush funds.
Most importantly, it does NOT let the DOD off the hook completely. Not even close. It merely spares defense from sequestration (the second round of debt ceiling deal ordered defense cuts, $600 bn) while leaving the first round of DCD-ordered cuts ($487 bn) untouched. That means defense will stll be cut – but by $487 bn, not $1.087 trillion, over the next decade.
AP admits that the bill
“would spare the military from a $55 billion, 10 percent automatic budget cut next year that’s punishment for the failure of last year’s deficit-reduction “supercommittee” to strike a deal.”
But AP fails to underline WHO will get punished for the failure, and what the definition of “punishment” is. Punishment is a penalty for the consequence of one’s OWN wrongdoing. In any normal country, in any normal world, a person or organization is punished ONLY for its own wrongdoing, and not the offenses committed by other parties; and the punishment for a crime falls ONLY on those who committed it.
Yet, under sequestration, defense will be punished for the failure of the CONGRESS to come up with a budget solution plan. It was Congress’s failure, so logically, the Congress should be punished. Yet, instead, an innocent third party – the military – will be punished. And the sequester ($600 bn) will be coming on top of all the cuts already administered or scheduled (totalling $920 bn since 2009), none of which the bill attempts to reverse. Only the sequester would be cancelled, while the rest of the defense cuts, as well as the Obama plan of withdrawal from Afghanistan, would remain intact.
Yet, liberals still falsely claim that the bill would completely let defense off the hook. Rep. Jim McGovern, a stridently liberal Democrat fron MA, falsely claims that:
“”They are protecting the massive Pentagon budget with all its waste … and finding even deeper cuts in programs that benefit the people of this country. (…) This bill before us would create a government where there is no conscience, where the wealthy and well-connected are protected and enriched – and the middle class, the poor and the vulnerable are essentially forgotten.”
These claims are not only blatant lies, they are despicable. The bill does not protect the Pentagon budget or its waste; it merely prevents it from being cut too deeply. It leaves First Tier BCA-mandated budget cuts ($487 bn), as well as previous rounds of defense cuts, untouched. Complying with these cuts has forced the DOD to eliminate more than just outright waste, but also to make tough choices regarding the force structure, personnel, benefits, health programs, bases, foreign deployments, etc.
And as for Pentagon waste, the Dems waste more of taxpayers money (on their socialist welfare programs for couch potatoes, “green energy” programs, slush funds, and other boondoggles) every year than the DOD in five years.
The DOD has already contributed $920 bn in deficit reduction since 2009, while no other government agency or program has contributed anything significant. All other government agencies and programs have seen only tiny, if any, cuts. And that’s despite military spending accounting for just 19% of total federal spending and despite it being targeted by the BCA and the sequester for 50% of the cuts. Such cuts would be deeply unjust and disproportionate, not to mention reckless and dangerous.
The poor and the middle class would NOT be harmed by this bill. It would make only modest reductions in the social programs they use, while leaving entitlements almost intact, and cutting benefits for illegal aliens and Obama’s slush funds as well as his socialized medicine program.
America’s social spending is already way too high. Welfare spending alone amounted to $888 bn in FY2010 (while military spending then amounted to $664 bn); since then, welfare spending has grown while military spending has shrank. Currently, more Americans than ever are on food stamps, more than ever are on welfare rolls, and more than ever are dependent, one way or another, on the federal government. And the Democrats revel in that fact, because more government dependents mean more Democratic voters. And THAT is the real reason why the Dems are protecting these programs and zealously trying to gut defense.
Taxing the “rich” (who already pay 70% of the federal tax burden) and anyone else who is successful, and transferring their money to people who didn’t earn it and who have made welfare their way of life, is their deliberate plan, but it has nothing to do with helping the needy. It’s pure politics, plain and simple. The Dems couldn’t care less about downtrodden people, they just want to create more Democratic voters.
Instead of defending bloated social programs, including welfare and entitlement programs, Congress should be cutting them and preventing defense spending sequestration (while reviewing the defense budget line by line).
Half a century ago, in the early 1960s, before the “Great Society” programs were implemented, federal “welfare programs” as we know them didn’t even exist. “Welfare” as we think of it was a tiny program operated by your city or county government and open only for truly downtrodden people. Those who benefitted from them had to demonstrate they really needed help and to work hard to get back on their feet, because the money they received was coming from their neighbors. And the community had an interest in seeing the individual get up again and move off welfare.
But today, welfare rolls come from the Feds, and with minimal qualifications, you can receive them too, provided you’re willing to do the extremely hard work of walking to your mailbox once a month.
With minimal qualifications, you can receive tax credits, welfare rolls, nutrition aid, food stamps, farm subsidies, ethanol subsidies, student loans, and thousands of other giveaways.
And your fellow Americans across the country – the 50% of the population who are still productive and still pay taxes – have to pay for you.
And because of this myriad of “social programs”, including welfare rolls, it doesn’t matter if you do something wrong. The federal government will take care of you.
Lastly, no media outlet and (AFAIK) no politician has mentioned that defense is the #1 Constitutional duty of the federal government while the vast majority of domestic programs and agencies, including all social programs, are unconstitutional.
Welfare, child and senior nutrition, health, and so forth are, as one of my friends likes to say, among the myriad of issues reserved by the Constitution EXCLUSIVELY to the states and the people. The federal government, by spending money on these issues, is only making matters WORSE.
AP and the Democrats should immediately correct their blatant lies and apologize for them.