I watched the opening of SNL last night, which must have aired originally in February or March, because the first sketch was a President Obama impersonator explaining what will have to be cut from the budget due to the sequester.
My favorite mock cut was the astronaut who said they will no longer have visors in their space suits, so they’ll just have to hold their breath when they do space walks.
That also reminded me of a Wall Street Journal article (though I’m not sure is the original article that I read) this week that made a good point that the jobs report is pretty good a few months after the gloom and doom that was supposed to follow the sequester spending cuts.
(As a side note to WSJ.com editors, it is extremely tough to find an article that is more than day or two old. It’d be nice, especially for the opinion section, if you just had a calendar archive that listed links to the articles that ran on certain days.)
Here’s a couple (paraphrased) good points made by callers to a radio show that I heard on the way to work this week.
Caller 1 — About the sequester budget cuts:
They expected us all to take the hit to pay the extra 2% in payroll tax at the beginning of the year. Why shouldn’t we expect government to take a hit once in a while?
Caller 2 did a great job illustrating the silliness of false choices often presented by politicians facing budget cuts:
Let’s say I take home $1,000 a week in pay. The payroll tax increase kicks in and that costs me $20 a week. Who’s going to believe it when I say, “Now I won’t have lunch money for my kids and they won’t be able to eat lunch.” Nobody…they’ll ask me if there are other expenses I could cut first. Why not cut back on the beer or Starbucks? They’ll tell me that I can make lunch for my kids to take to school.
But, why, when politicians use this tactic do people accept it as if there are no other alternatives.