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Why Not Cut Federal Government Size and Spending
Everyone, except those in charge, think that government and government spending are out of control. Now a logical or common sense person might say that the answer is to quit spending so much and quit adding to the size of the government. Unfortunately common sense and government do not always mix well. Sort of like oil and water. Because the public is feeling outraged by the size of government, debt and spending there is some pretense at cutting both. This is probably an impractical suggestion as to how to do it. Impractical because it just isn’t the way things are done.
As things are done now the politicians argue about which programs to cut and then decide to maybe trip a bit here and there. Somehow they end up spending more than ever. This is because:
· They believe that by giving taxpayer money to their friends and supporters (known as special interests) it will somehow stimulate the economy.
·Elected officials feel their legacy depends of creating new programs.
· They believe that it is their job to have the government solve all problems
· Constitutional requirements have been ignored or worse
Instead of the above, I suggest we:
- Eliminate the spoils system that has developed.Have any “stimulus” plan be checked by independent auditors and be published for public scrutiny. Further I would like to see it all presented at public meetings.
- Any new program or agency of the federal government should be presented to the public in much the same way. Those presenting it must be required to justify
- Why it is needed.
- Whether it is constitutionally a function of the Federal Government.
- Can it be done by either private industry of a lower level of government?
- How it will be paid for.
Cut current cost and expenditures. The current approach is to supposedly see if there is anything we don’t need. Then it becomes a matter of all groups and politicians arguing that whatever program it is cannot be cut. Even agencies and programs that are needed and necessary have a tendency to grow and expand, therefore total scrutiny is needed. I suggest that the process be reversed.
- Every aspect of the government, except the Constitution be approached as being unnecessary. From that point, like the above, everything would have to be justified in terms of need and constitutionality and need. Some suggestion from me.
- Are unselected officials known as Czars necessary or constitutional?
- Does the public know what they cost or are they “off the books?” I don’t know, do you?
- Where are their powers spelled out?
- Are power and authority do they have?
- Who do they answer to?
- Is it constitutional?
- Are student loans and grants legal?
- Who should administer them?
- Should the Federal Government determine curriculum?
- I do think that any land grant college owes something to the government, which I believe is represented by ROTC programs.
- Should the government tell us what to eat, or can other organizations do it as well or better? Where is this in the constitution?
- Does the government have the right to tell non-government agencies that they have to perform abortions?
- It is in the constitution.
- The defense agencies may be doing things that are not sanctioned by the constitution.
- The military may engage in things outside of its mission.
I would also suggest that the politicians who vote on it scrutinize every new bill. They in turn should be held responsible for what may go wrong because of it. Also the bills should have a self-destruct clause that requires it be reexamined to see if it is still necessary. I also suggest that the government adopt the same accounting principles as used by industry.
A case in point is in an article I read this morning on Townhall.com by Brian McNicoll. He reports that the government has it’s own weather bureau but almost everyone uses the weather channel. Why are we wasting money on government duplication that is better done by industry? The above is far from a complete list but I anticipate it will generate as much argument as I can handle.
Do you believe that high debt and spending by the government hurt the economy?
© 2011 Don A. Hoglund