What sequestration is really about

As documented on this website with abundant evidence, sequestration of defense spending – if it goes through – will decimate defense spending and thus gut the US military.

But who on Capitol Hill insists on such a course? And why?

The answer is, of course, the Democrats, along with President Barack Obama, who resides in the White House (until Jan. 20th, 2013, at least). But why?

At least some of the Democrats insist on sequestration precisely because it would gut defense. They overtly say that they want sequestration to happen precisely because it will cut defense spending deeply.

But a majority of Democrats still officially oppose sequestration and say that it would damage the military beyond repair, as do most Republicans. In fact, everyone except the fringes of the two parties agrees on that. So why don’t these Democrats just agree to cancel sequestration and to Republicans’ alternative cuts proposals?

Because they’re defending the welfare state, from which their voters – the dependency class – benefit, and any replacement for sequestration would have to involve cuts in social/welfare spending – discretionary and/or mandatory. For the Democrats, sequestration is a very convenient, very useful tool to raise taxes and preserve, if not expand, the welfare state.

But that would cost the Democrats votes, so they’re never going to do that. They’re going to reject any entitlement reforms or discretionary domestic spending cuts out of hand. They’ll never agree to anything that would cost them any votes of the dependency class. So they insist that sequestration be resolved solely or mostly through massive tax hikes.

Republicans, of course, will not agree do that, unless the vast majority of them suddenly becomes faint-hearted AND starts to care about defense more than they do about getting reelected.

So ultimately, for the vast majority of Republicans and Democrats, this is a battle about more than defense spending. It’s a battle over the nature of America and its federal government, a battle about whether to preserve and expand or shrink the welfare state. It’s a battle – waged by proxy – between the “takers” and the “makers”.

THAT is what is at stake in this battle over sequestration. It’s more than just defense – as important as defense alone is.


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