I don't completely disagree with you, mysteryman, but I think caution must be applied as to where cuts are made because some budgetary cuts may lead to long term increased costs in other areas, and some may directly work to increase the deficit.
On the previous page of this thread, I posted an article from the Wall Street Journal which quoted the IRS commissioner as saying that the proposed $6 million+ spending cut to the IRS would immediately result in that agency being unable to collect $4 billion
in taxes. If that is the case, then spending cuts in this area would seem to be far more destructive than beneficial to the economy. Allowing the IRS to collect money already owed is a far better alternative than the prospect of increased taxes, and impeding its ability to add $4 billion to the government coffers makes little sense.
Similarly, cuts in federal college aid programs may well contribute to increased costs in other areas.
The Pell Grant program is the federal government's main vehicle for providing need-based aid to low-income families who want to send their children to college. Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives have proposed slashing the program's budget by 15 percent for the coming budget year, a move that could reduce the maximum award under Pell by $845, according to The Chronicle for Higher Education.
Education beyond high school is the way that low income groups move into the middle class--and become less dependent on other government support programs (Medicaid, etc.). Education increases the probability of employment with a living wage, and to decrease college financial assistance, which significantly impacts lower income groups, would seem to be counter-productive if you want to contain costs in other areas.
In addition, state support for public universities has continued to decline, and this can seriously affect our country's ability to compete on a global scale. Again, this most directly impacts lower income groups, and those middle class families already struggling to pay their bills.
At stake is whether the United States will keep its role as the world's pre-eminent business and economic leader as it comes under pressure from China and India, which are turning out tens of thousands of highly trained engineering and technology graduates.
"Cutbacks in education are going to really impede our ability to compete in the future," said Joseph Stiglitz, a Nobel laureate in economics and professor at Columbia University. "The question is, 'Will we be making the investment in people and skills to make ourselves competitive?'"...
Policymakers at the schools that educate three-quarters of America's 18.2 million college students are eyeing more layoffs, eliminating degree programs and campuses, and giving slots to higher-paying students from outside home states.
Governors in Pennsylvania, Nevada, Washington, Texas, California and at least another 15 states are seeking steep cuts in aid to higher education. Since the U.S. recession began in late 2007, 43 state governments have already cut aid to state university systems.
"Our higher ed system is at the breaking point," Washington state Rep. Larry Seaquist said during a state House hearing on cutting aid to Washington's four-year state colleges. "It just looks like wall-to-wall problems."
The cuts come as state governments anticipate another year of revenues enfeebled by the U.S. housing crisis, weak consumer spending and the slow U.S. economic expansion. Federal aid that had softened some of the revenue slide is ending.
State governments' tax collections fell $14.3 billion to $704.6 billion in fiscal 2010, which ended last June, according to the U.S. Census. That was down 2 percent from fiscal 2009 but milder than that year's drop of $65.8 billion from fiscal 2008.
To make matters worse, budget gaps among states for the 12 months starting July 1 total at least $112 billion.
"State support of public universities -- on the decline since the 1980s -- is likely to dwindle further as most states face the loss of federal stimulus funding and the economy continues its slow recovery," said Edith Behr, a vice president and senior analyst at Moody's Investors Service.
It was not government spending that created our current recession, and imprudently slashing government spending in certain areas may only serve to deepen our problems in the long run. I'm certainly in favor of some cuts, and I want government agencies better regulated to assure less waste, and fraud, and mismanagement. But I don't want to see cuts so drastic that they will only serve to create a new host of problems.
Right now, I havent seen any serious attempt by the dems to cut spending at all.
That's not true. The Democrats have already agreed to significant budget cuts. It is the Republicans, apparently in an effort to appease Tea Party extremists, who are holding up passage of the current budget, and that may lead to a government shutdown on April 8th. At issue is not just the budget cuts, the Republicans are trying to tack on all sorts of other things to these spending bills. Why the Republicans are so fearful of the Tea Partiers, groups that have substantially lost support in recent months, that they are risking a potential government shutdown over their demands, is somewhat difficult to understand, but it does seem to be the Tea Party element which is currently impeding the Republicans ability to reach a compromise with the Democrats.