Free Markets, Free People

$3.4 Trillion In Spending, $17 Billion In “Savings”

I am enjoying the spin on this – a $3.4 trillion dollar budget offset by $17 billion in “savings”. And what does the administration want you concentrating on? That pittance of a savings.

Now I welcome any program eliminations and reductions, don’t get me wrong, but my goodness, $17 billion in relation to the spending that’s being done with the budget and outside the budget for “stimulus” and bailouts makes these “savings” simply laughable. They’re diversionary bait. They’re larger than the 100 million Obama ordered previously only because of the derision with which that cut was met. In the context of total spending, this ‘savings’ is comparable.

Even liberals aren’t fooled for the most part. Isabel Sawhill, who was a senior official in the Clinton budget office and now with the Brookings Institute finds little to be excited about:

“This is a good government exercise without much prospect of putting a significant dent in spending.”

Translation: “This is all for show. It demonstrates no committment to smaller government or less spending. Its purpose is to dampen criticism of the huge spending increases”.

As I understand it, half the cuts come from Defense spending and the other half from discretionary spending. Again the politics of these cuts is smart if not transparent. If you’re going to cut defense, something the right is passionate about, you have to even that out by eliminating something the left likes. Again, I’m not necessarily against cuts to defense (if they’re smart and appropriate then fine) but you have to again admire the way this is being done – defense cuts and cutting “Even Start”, a program created in the late 1980s to promote literacy for young children and their parents.

Of course Even Start was probably a boondoggle from the start, but what does it do for the administration – give them political cover and somewhat immunize them from criticism.

Smart politics, to a point, but absolutely irrelevant except as a show piece and certainly pitifully insignificant as a spending cut.


24 Responses to $3.4 Trillion In Spending, $17 Billion In “Savings”

  • Who wants to take me up on a bet that most of that $17 Billion will be in the final appropriations bill ?

  • What he doesn’t seem to get, is people think we should spend less….than before. Not less than expected. Even a fool cannot see this as a spending decrease until we spend less than we did last year.

  • “Even a fool cannot…”

    Even a fool CAN…

    my bad

  • wait i misread myself….ok enough posting today lol

  • $17 Billion out of $3.4 Trillion = 0.5%
    One Half of One Percent
    one 200th of the total

    If KMart or WalMart were to advertise a 0.5% reduction as a Sale, they would be laughed out of their respective stores.

    This is a Joke?  Right?

  • Here’s a great vid covering this –

  • My God. Do you mean to tell me, now, that The Clown™ has been full of shite all this time about cutting the budget? Is that possible? Because I listen to MSNBC, the Comedy Network, and they tell me not only that The Clown™ is the most popular President since this country was founded, but that he has saved trillions of jobs and billions of dollars…or, was that billions of jobs and trillions of dollars? Either way, we are happily spending money to save ourselves from evil capitalism! So take heart, dammit. The Clown™ knows what is best for us. Best to let him decide how we spend our money and which doctor we see and what car to buy and if we can or cannot own guns.

  • “This is a Joke?  Right?”
    Well, you can bet no one in the prayer room at the temple at the White House press briefing will be pointing out that $17 billion on $3.4 trillion is not a lot to brag about.

    “Well, where I come from $17 billion is a lot of money, I don’t know about you!” little Gibbsie will say with dripping sarcasm should anyone dare mention that it’s .05%. 

    It’s never meaningless, sure 17 billion is a bunch of cash, no doubt. 
    But that’s only because they’ve got us playing with numbers so freaking large the average person isn’t even sure how many ZERO’s to put after them.

    • I’m telling you – look at the Youtube video I posted – it’s relevant and makes understanding all those pesky zero’s easy.

  • Cuts involve –
    “payments to states to clean up abandoned mines and an early child education program”.

    My GOD!  They’re going to stop cleaning up abandoned mines, and stop educating children on how to identify and stay away from abandoned mines!  Good lord!  The number of Baby Jessica type incidents throughout the country will no doubt sky rocket as 5 year olds, left to their own amusement in mine infested areas will wander into them willy nilly causing the price of emergency services to also sky rocket (I’m limiting myself to one type of exaggerative adjective as a cost savings) in those areas as emergency rescue teams are sent out day after day, week after week to extract toddlers from abandoned mines. 

    Barack Obama doesn’t care about young children in mining states!

  • The rest of world – China, India, and Russia – play chess while the U.S. plays poker. Both political parties are responsibile for the mess America finds itself, especially responsible are the American people who get hood winked every four years because of emotional election gimmicks. Both Bushes, Clinton, Obama, and even Reagan said and did thing that have come haunt the soon to be second rate economic power called the United States. Until the American people wise up and take the bull by the horns we are selling ourselves down the drain. We have no one to blame but ourselves.

    Danny L. McDaniel
    Lafayette, Indiana

    • Mr. Danny McDaniel:

      Whatever mistakes Reagan and Bush 41 and Bush 43 made – and, believe me, they made their fair share – the country was far better under their leadership than that of The Clown™ currently in office, or The Rapist™ who served with his douchebag wife from 1993 to 2001, the wife currently sitting as Secretary of State. So if you want to get screwed, as Indiana did, keep voting for The Clown™ and His Clownettes™. Whatever mistakes the GOP makes, at least I know, most of the time, they won’t be screwing with my privacy or my guns.

  • Well, we all know that massive spending increases + tax hikes + printing more money = highly injurious to the economy.

    The question is if everyone else will realize this, or just learn to accept a lower standard of living.  Most countries around the world have become increasingly statist.  There’s almost no reason to believe America will have a different fate, short of an Lincoln-like political figure who can pull everyone’s head out of their a$$es.  Otherwise I expect things to become worse.

  • I’ve written before and I repeat it here:

    TAO is counting on the inability of most Americans to distinguish between two large numbers.  O’ course, he’s also counting on MiniTru to report his “cuts” in such a way as to obscure that they aren’t much in the way of cuts at all.  Take this headline from Yahoo! News:

    Obama wants to trim or eliminate 121 federal programs

    Or this:

    Obama Calls for $17 Billion in Budget Cuts, Resistance Likely

    To the unininformed or careless reader who merely skims the headline while he’s loging into his e-mail or getting ready to do some surfing, it appears that TAO is going after the buget with an axe.  $17 billion???  Wow!  As Gibbsie says, that’s a lot of money!  That must be, like, almost all the federal budget!  And he’ll get resistance, so obviously those MUST be big, huge, massive cuts!

    TAO is playing the American people for suckers… because he knows that’s exactly what we are.

    • Exactly. The public will only start to figure this out when the tax bills come. Obama probably hopes to let those hit in 2013.

  • The “cuts” are a hoax.  That money will be automatically re-allocated to other discretionary programs.  No net spending reduction.  The emperor’s new clothes look fab-u-lous.

  • The deal is that Obie and company are counting on the typical, ignorant, public school-educated voting public to just see the -ion at the end of every value and just think of Very Large Amounts, and that seventeen billion is just a little bit smaller than three trillion.

  • It just keeps getting better. Now Obama is telling the press how to spin his feeble cuts:

    • And why shouldn’t they?  Their (newly discovered) mandate is to make his presidency work. I got a thrill going up my leg…

    • “Relentless Republican rhetoric” –
      1: the art of speaking or writing effectively: as a: the study of principles and rules of composition formulated by critics of ancient times b: the study of writing or speaking as a means of communication or persuasion.
      2 a: skill in the effective use of speech b: a type or mode of language or speech ; also : insincere or grandiloquent language
      3: verbal communication : discourse

      Show of hands, how many people think the writer is using #2 as his meaning for the word rhetoric.

  • Now Obama is telling the press how to spin his feeble cuts:

    You mean his propaganda arm, right?

  • This is worthy of a Monty Python sketch, which is where the Big O and his crew probably learned economics. First the Ministry of Funny Walks has its budget doubled as part of a stimulus plan, then its budget is slashed by 20% as a cost cutting measure before the ink is dry on the stimulus bill. The fiscal equivalent ofThree -card Monte.

  • Don’t suppose THIS plan was done away with as part of the $17 billion savings.
    As little Gibbsie would say $400,000 is a lot of money where I come from, I don’t know about you!