Do Proposed Federal Budgets Actually Cut Any Real Spending?
August 15th, 2012
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by Tim Brown
We hear a lot about cuts in spending and about how we have not had a budget in the past four years. The latter is true. We havenâ€™t had a budget. The problem is that our elected officials have continued to support funding government without a budget. Theyâ€™ve done it to the tune ofÂ $1 trillion in deficit spending each year over the past 5 years. Both Democrats and Republicans have done it andÂ they are set to do it again in September.
Many people do not understand exactly what happens when budgets are made at the federal level. For instance theÂ Paul Ryan budgetÂ was tossed out as other budgets were, includingÂ Senator Rand Paulâ€™s budget. The problem with many budgets is that they donâ€™tÂ actuallyÂ cut any spending.
Ron Paul tried to point this out in the Republican debates asÂ he corrected Mitt RomneyÂ who claimed that Democrats cut spending by $1 trillion from the military to fund $1 trillion to Obamacare. Paul told the truth that there was absolutely no cutting of anything, either in Obamacare or the military. â€śItâ€™s just talk,â€ť he said.
Why is this important? Well, over the next couple of months the issue of a budget will come front and center and I want this audience to see what the real issue is. The real issue is to keep your eye on the ball and when you hear â€ścutsâ€ť or â€śspending cutsâ€ť donâ€™t think of actual spending cuts, instead think of a reduction in projected spending, but never think of an actual real cut where the budget will be less in one year versus the precious year. The best way I can demonstrate what Iâ€™m writing about is with a scenario I learned from aÂ good friend of mine.
Letâ€™s take an example of a guy who has been spending $5,000 on guns and ammo each year for the past 3 years. Yes, I like guns and there is nothing wrong with purchasing guns and ammo. I am pro-Second Amendment! Now, this friend has acquired a nice collection for sure. However, he only makes $30,000 a year and has a wife and child. His wife is concerned because he now has two credit cards maxed out and has gotten another to purchase guns and ammo this year. She asks you to go and speak to him about his spending since he is your friend. You agree to do so.
You set up a time to come by and you go out on the back patio for a beer and a premium cigar. As you talk you ask him about what heâ€™s doing spending that money like that. You point out the recklessness of spending that kind of money and the effects it will have on his family, not to mention the interest that will accrue using credit cards and the lack of a family budget. Your friend agrees with you that you are right and that he should try and cut back on spending and will set up a budget. He even states that he will look to cut his spending on guns and ammo by 50 percent in the coming year. You both agree to revisit the issue in one year and see how things are.
The following year you are surprised to get a call from his wife hysterical that he has spent $7,500 on guns and ammo this year. You hurry over and find your friend admiring and cleaning some of his newest weapons. You sit looking bewildered at him and ask, â€śWhat are you doing? I thought you were going to cut your spending on guns and ammo by 50%, but youâ€™ve increased your spending by 50%!â€ť
Your friend smiles at you and gives you a confused look and answers, â€śWhat are you talking about? I did cut my spending by 50 percent. You see I was planning on spending $15,000 this year on some very special collectorâ€™s weapons, but instead I budgeted to only spend half that amount.â€ť
Now, if we were in that situation, would we look at our friend like he was a few peanuts shy of a Snickers bar? I think we would. Yet, this is exactly what takes place in the federal government and sadly in many state governments. Their budget must always go up, never down, and when they talk about cuts to spending, what they are referring to is â€śprojected spending.â€ť Like our friend who budgeted to spend $15,000 and only spent $7,500, claiming it was a 50 percent spending cut, the government does the same thing. See the point?
This is the lie that comes out of Washington and it is believed by those who espouse it and those who hear it, but the truth is that if you or I were to establish our budgets like this, people would think we had lost our minds. Well friends, the politicians in Washington have either lost their minds or they do this song and dance on purpose and ultimately it the money sent to Washington is just taking the publicâ€™s money and redistributing it to others.
The best thing for the federal government to do is to listen to the advice that Col. Davy Crockett learned years ago, or at least what is attributed to a constituent of his. As Mr. Horatio Bunce informed Col Crockett of his intent not to vote for him due to the fact that Col. Crockett voted to give $20,000 of the public treasury money to people who were burned out of their homes,Â he said the following:
The government ought to have in the treasury no more than enough for its legitimate purposesâ€¦The power of collecting and disbursing money at pleasure is the most dangerous power that can be entrusted to man.Â While you are voting to relieve one, you are drawing money from thousandsâ€¦If you have the right to give anything, the amount was simply a matter of discretion with you, and you had as much right to give $20,000,000 as $20,000.Â If you have the right to give to one, you have the right to give to all; and as the Constitution neither defines charity nor stipulates the amount, you are at liberty to give any and everything which you may believe, or profess to believe, is a charity, to any amount you may think proper.Â You will very easily perceive what a wide door this would open for fraud and corruption and favoritism, on the one hand, and for robbing the people on the other.â€ť
My fellow Americans, this is what these supposed â€śbudgetsâ€ť do. They continue to mask the government taking what is not theirs and giving it to others, while at the same time they attempt to speak of spending cuts, which in the majority of cases are not real cuts, but simply lowering of projections. Every budget is always a spending increase. The budget will always increase, unless there is someone who is willing to call for significant, real cutsâ€¦.like $1 trillion in the first year of the budget, which is somethingÂ even Rush Limbaugh agrees withÂ as a serious fiscal plan.
Keep this in mind as I am absolutely certain we will hear a lot of talk about budgets in the coming weeks.
About Tim Brown
Husband to my wife. Father of 10. Jack of All Trades. Christian and lover of liberty.
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