Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Obama's Budget Avoidance

The sequester deadline draws near and the rhetoric is increasingly hysterical. According to some, doomsday will occur. The Washington Post recently published: "Obama presses Congress for Stopgap Sequester Fix" which struck me a particularly odd. The reason, the sequestration was the brainchild of the Obama administration itself. Mr. Kessler of the Washington Post exposed this through his article: "Obama’s fanciful claim that Congress ‘proposed’ the sequester".

Now, Obama wants to weasel out of the very agreement that he promoted. KSY_in_NOVA provided the following U-Tube Links. The first to Obama glorifying the sequester with Obama making a grand assertion of total complete commitment to the sequester.  U-tube video: "President Obama: I will veto any effort to get rid of the sequester cuts". Spin forward to today and Obama is now disavowing his prior commitment. Obama is now on the bully-pulpit frantically fanning the flames of fear, uncertainty and doubt (FUD).  U-Tube video: "Obama: People will lose jobs over forced cuts". Particularly duplicitous is the blame-game claim by Obama that the sequester (which Obama promoted and signed) is a Congressional "meat clever" that will devastate the economy.  What does Obama's manufactured hyperbolic crises and fear mongering have to do with Obama's required draft budget proposal to the House?

Obama was required to submit a draft budget proposal to the US House of Representatives by early February 2013 for FY 2014. He has failed to do so. Obama is now pressing for Congress to propose a stopgap "fix" to the sequester.  The word "fix" really being a euphemism that would allow Obama to repudiate a deal he proposed and agreed to. Obama by going back on his promise is not committed to upholding his word.

Since the sequester and the proposed budget have approximate deadlines, a simple logical approach for Obama would have been to suggest through the draft budget an alternative the sequester. After all it is Obama who is seeking to renege on his deal so he should take the initiative to offer an alternative. Instead of offering an alternative budget proposal Obama arrogantly demands that Congress provide him with a budget proposal.

What does this mean, in terms of the overall budgetary process? Obama has repeatedly asserted how he has a "fair and balanced approach to deficit spending", yet he has failed to put that into writing.  The most current example, Obama has not yet released his 2014 draft budget proposal and is now proposing to renege on the sequester that Obama originally asserted would constitute part of his deficit reduction efforts. Instead of taking the imitative to prepare an alternative to the sequester, Obama arrogantly demands that Congress to give him a draft budget proposal. 

I assume that Obama is playing this loathsome budgetary game, so that he can vilify any proposed budget that the House offers.  Yet Obama refuses to meet budgetary deadlines or disclose his budgetary plans. Quite contemptuous for Obama to demand to see the others "cards" while refusing to show your "cards".  Furthermore, this clearly illustrate the fact that Obama simply does not want the public to actually evaluate his budgetary plans. By extension and Obama's current efforts to renege, any Obama's budget proposal is likely to be nothing more than meaningless smoke and mirrors.

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