Cutting Jobs Instead of Bombs
I don’t understand our political leaders. They’re so interested in cutting spending on healthcare and retirement – even the Democratic president is eager to start hacking away at entitlements – yet almost none of them can bring themselves to discuss defense cuts or curtailing spending on the drug war, prisons, and other bottomless pits where the only return on tax dollars is misery.
Corporate welfare and agricultural subsidies are off-limits to anti-tax crusader Grover Norquist, and most of the Republicans and many Democrats seem only too happy to agree. And naturally, actually paying our bills with, you know, revenue is strictly verboten. Because everyone knows that fiscal responsibility equals tax cuts, end of story.
In other words, cutting government that actually provides services to people is okay. Cutting government that expands the most violent aspects of the state or that benefits the rich and powerful is absolutely unthinkable. Cutting services to poor people is okay, but raising taxes on the rich is tyranny. Firing public employees is okay regardless of the high unemployment numbers, but letting nonviolent prisoners who cost the taxpayer $45,000 a year out of jail is something we simply cannot countenance.
I’m all for limiting government and keeping taxes low and services efficient, but not when we do it like this. Chains first, then crutches.