Washington Games Continue Despite Huge Budget Gap

Published 12:00 am Monday, June 6, 2011

Either life as we know it is about to end, or more political games are being played in Washington. Already in hock by $14.3 trillion, Washington wants to borrow more, much more. Only the federal debt ceiling is standing in the way.
The Obama administration wants to raise its borrowing limit by another $2.4 trillion to $16.7 trillion. Administration officials warn of a world market meltdown if Congress doesn’t authorize the borrowing spree to continue.
Even these days, $2.4 trillion is a lot of money.
Our member of Congress, Virginia Foxx, announced Tuesday she’s voting against the increase.
“If someone has a spending problem they’re usually told to spend less and cut up their credit cards,” Foxx said. “The federal government has the worst sort of chronic over-spending problem and simply increasing its credit card limit will do nothing to fix the problem.  That’s why any attempt to increase the debt limit must be tied to a serious, long-term spending reduction plan.”
The problem is that any attempt to cut spending in Raleigh or Washington is met with howls of protest. Increasing spending is the easiest way for a politician to win friends — and votes. Nobody likes a Scrooge.
Strangely, both political parties talk about fiscal responsibility, living within our means and balancing the budget. Both sides also have their sacred cows, things that can’t be sacrificed at the risk of losing votes. Presidential candidates have to promise to keep agriculture subsidies to win votes in the important Iowa caucus. Medicare and Social Security benefits can’t be touched for fear of angering elderly voters. As for education spending, anybody who would propose cuts is labeled an idiot.
Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin recently presented a budget plan that would drastically cut spending. Predictably, he has been tarred and feathered by the other side.
The games continue. Too bad for us. The problem will continue to get worse …