Budget Hostage

Budget Hostage

Talk show hosts, at least the ones I have access to, have been around a long time. While I appreciate how these shows encourage people to be aware of the issues, in many cases they make no effort to push for change. I can’t listen to the left wing shows for long and in my location, they are hard to find, but do exist. I grow weary of the right wing as well since they consistently take zero responsibility for any of the failed policies that currently exist.

As the citizens of this country are held hostage, Congress makes deals concerning a two-thousand (plus…I’ve heard 2500) page bill. Where is the Republican party showing the American people what is contained in this monstrosity? Where is the piece by piece discussion concerning what is in it? We get a bit of this and a bit of that, but nothing comprehensive. Parse it out to some Congress members. One hundred members at 25 pages each, provide a summary and create a counter. How would it spend the money? What would its budget look like? How would it fund it? What would they cut or better yet, eliminate?

The same is true for the Democrats. We laughed about “…we have to pass it to see what’s in it…”, but that was only to keep from crying. How come the Democrats have not laid out a comprehensive summary detailing what is in the bill and how it will be funded. Spell out how the bill will dictate federal voting mechanisms. Will it allow ballot harvesting, prevent voter ID, and provide funding for candidates to run for office? Will it remove a State’s right to run its own election? How about Medicaid expansion? Social program expansion? What will it do to the defense budget? How about education, will higher education be free for everyone, or is it only community college? Will pre school be free for everyone or will it be need based? Tell us, inquiring minds want to know.

I know it is a pain to review the bill as it goes through its negotiating stage, but it would be interesting to see how it evolves. It might be enlightening to see where one hundred million gets added or subtracted, depending on what negotiations stall, or where votes are suddenly found. How about all the slush fund money: Grants, worth billions, for every three and four letter agency, allocated by un-named committees or individuals.

The debt and debt ceiling have already been discussed, but each year the budget deficit grows larger. We talk about a balanced budget, but those days are long gone. A balanced budget still keeps up to our neck in hock and does nothing to address the mountain of debt. As the Fed is pushed into raising interest rates, this debt will pose a more formidable challenge as its eats into social program spending or forces tax rates that will make working a losing proposition.

I wish both sides would explain the value, and cost, of their respective budget proposals, but I guess that is just silly.

I keep expecting more from Republicans, but I’ll learn.

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Categorized as Policy

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