What’s interesting in the news today?
Open thread, so feel free to chime in.
The Scarequester nonsense continues. The Democrat proposed bill was as bad as you’d think. How does adding to the deficit solve anything, other than just maintaining the status-quo? It deserved to fail.
“The sequester replacement bill proposed by Senate Democrats, and endorsed by the White House, would add $7.2 billion to the federal deficit over ten years, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO).
“CBO estimates that S. 388 would increase direct spending by $62.4 billion and revenues by $55.1 billion over the 2013–2023 period. Thus, the cumulative deficit would increase by $7.2 billion from those changes,” CBO wrote in a report.
The Democratic bill would replace the $85 billion in automatic cuts scheduled to take effect on Friday with a mixture of tax increases and spending cuts to defense programs and farm subsidies. However, those spending cuts would be phased in over a ten-year period, whereas the sequestration cuts would occur this year.”
The Republican bill which would keep the sequester in place, but allow Obama discretion in implementing the cuts, failed as well.
“A sequester will go into effect Friday, after a Republican measure to offset the automatic, across-the-board spending cuts associated with the budget act was rejected by Senate leadership Thursday. A Democratic proposal also fell short of the 60 votes needed.”
“The GOP’s bill that would have given President Barack Obama the flexibility to implement the $85 billion in spending cuts was rebuffed 38 to 62. The measure was struck down by both Democrats and tea party members. On the other hand, the Democrats’ proposal failed 51 to 49 and wasn’t popular among Republicans, as expected.”
Meanwhile, the fear-mongering and scare tactics continue.
“Rep. Donna Edwards (D-Md.) said that if the sequester goes into effect, women who are victims of domestic violence will be “forced to stay in their homes with their abuser” at the “hands of the GOP.””
““The harm is real,” Edwards said. “230,000 victims will be calling crisis hotlines and those calls will go unanswered. 230,000 calls to crisis hotlines around the country.”
“So can you imagine that in the middle of the night a woman is being battered, she has her two children, she wants to get to safety, she places a phone call to a hotline and that line goes unanswered,” she said. “That’s what sequestration means to victims of domestic violence.””
There’s plenty that can be cut without touching stuff like this. Unless Dems and Obama chose to do it. This doesn’t need to be near as painful as they make it sound. Waste is everywhere, start there and with redundant programs.
Stuff like this is a good place to start, along with Cowboy Poetry.
“The White House budget office has told federal agencies to slow down new hiring, curtail travel and conferences, and to stop doling out bonuses unless absolutely required to by law, according to a new memo released late Wednesday.
Budget office controller Danny Werfel also warned agencies not to use outside contractors to try to get around the new limits on hiring.
The limits on bonuses and trips are unlikely to make a big dent in the $85 billion that agencies will be required to cut over the rest of this year. The Asbury Park Press, a New Jersey newspaper, reported last year that the federal government paid out $439 million in employee bonuses in 2011. Meanwhile, the House oversight committee said that big-dollar conferences amounted to $267.6 million in 2012.
But federal travel is a bigger cost, totaling $14.8 billion in 2012, the oversight committee said.”
Next we can have the President and his wife stop taking separate and numerous vacations on the taxpayer dime. That’ll save millions a year.
This isn’t nearly as hard as they’re making it.
You won’t find much sympathy for these folks I’m guessing. And really, 5-7 days of furlough is the end of the world? Just be thankful you still have a job. Maybe they should have thought of the costs when hiring 16,ooo new IRS agents to enforce ObamaCare.
“The Internal Revenue Service plans to require five to seven days of unpaid leave for many of it employees through September, but it won’t begin the furloughs until the summer in an effort to avoid disruptions in the April tax filing deadline.”
““If sequestration occurs, we will continue to operate under a hiring freeze, reduce funding for grants and other expenditures, and cut costs in areas such as travel, training, facilities and supplies,” IRS Acting Commissioner Steven Miller wrote employees Thursday. “In addition, we will need to review contract spending to ensure only the most critical and mandatory
requirements are fully funded.””
Shouldn’t that be the norm instead of the exception? Critical and mandatory requirements should be all they do.
And while Democrats and liberal members of the press attack Woodward for telling the truth, others have come forward.
Now Ron Fournier of the National Journal reports being verbally abused and threatened by a “senior advisor”.”
“USA Today also contributed to the tide today :
It’s almost like there’s a pattern or something.
They don’t like it when the truth gets out.
This one? Well sure it’s nice that we could, but should we? Sure it starts with something small, like with a pigeon, but then somebody does something stupid and dinosaurs are all over the place. I’ve seen Jurassic Park. I know how this ends.
“Speaking from the prestigious TED Conference in Long Beach Wednesday, Sausalito activist Stewart Brand said scientists are developing the ability to reassemble an extinct animal’s genome, and even recreate the animal itself.
Brand, who gained fame after he campaigned to have the original NASA space photos of earth published, and subsequently created the Whole Earth Catalog, said Wednesday that “de-extinction” could be used to help restore organisms and habitats damaged human activity, according to a report in the Marin Independent Journal.
A team of Harvard geneticists are currently working to bring back the passenger pigeon, which has been extinct since 1914, according to the TED website. The passenger pigeon is considered a keystone species because it aided the survival of the buffalo, according to TED. Researchers believe it may now be possible to alter the genetic makeup of a close relative, the band-tailed pigeon, to re-engineer the passenger pigeon.”