According to the Washington Post:

Members of the conservative Republican Study Committee said the GOP must keep its campaign pledge to immediately slice at least $100 billion from non-defense programs, an effort that would require lawmakers to reduce funding for most federal agencies by a third over the next seven months. And the group called for even deeper cuts over the next decade to return non-defense spending to 2006 levels.

“One hundred billion dollars is the number the American people heard last fall. And, frankly, when you look at it in the context that there’s a $14 trillion debt, it seems to me we should be able to find $100 billion,” said Rep. Jim Jordan (Ohio), chairman of the study committee, a group of economic and social conservatives whose ranks have swelled since the GOP won back control of the House in the November midterm elections.

The proposed cuts dig very deeply into systems that simply cannot take hits such as the VA, DHS, and DOD.  The federal prisons would also lose thousands of workers:

According to Democratic estimates, cuts of that magnitude – if applied across the board – would require the Justice Department to fire 4,000 FBI agents and 1,500 agents at the Drug Enforcement Administration. The federal prison system would have to fire 5,700 correctional officers, the Agriculture Department would have to cut about 3,000 food safety inspectors, and the Head Start early-childhood education program would be forced to cut about 389,000 children from its rolls.

The American people really aren’t going to accept these kinds of cuts.  You can’t put people in prison and have no guards.  I wonder what will happen to all those border guards?  The political sound byte ‘Stop Spending’ is only going to be good for someone else’s ox.  A couple years of this crap and these folks will get sent packing.  At what what point do we start considering public safety?

I just looked it up.  I feel better.  When I was a kid, we were at 80% of our GDP.  Now we are at 62%.  Should I be thinking things are looking up?  Just an baby boomer perspective on the whole matter. 

The real test will be how badly the voters really want to shrink national debt.  I am betting once their personal ox starts getting gored in the budget cuts, they will not be pleased.  The ‘Stop Spending’ crowd needs to figure out a way to convince the voters that all this budget slashing is a good thing, and that the resulting unemployment is a good thing.  That’s not going to be an easy job.

17 Thoughts to “House GOP group proposes deep spending cuts over next decade”

  1. Starryflights

    You are correct. The deficit as percent of GDP perspective is a far, far more vital gauge of our national debt than simply the straight number. The current debt ratio is relatively low. This is why government stimulus spending is the preferred method of spurring economic growth. There is no correlation between reducing government spending and spurring economic growth.

  2. Starryflights

    And last I heard, President Obama still has a say in matters like these. So does the US Senate. As a matter of fact, it’s not even clear that Speaker Boehner supports such far-reaching cuts.

    And why is Defense exempt? What about social security and medicare?

  3. Wolverine

    Moon, the CBO says that, if we keep on spending the way we are, the total debt to GDP ratio will hit 90% in 2020. Some analysts say that we may already be there. Did you get the 62% number using only the debt held by the public? “Total debt” means debt held by the public plus intragovernmental debt. The only time that the number has been higher was just after WWII — indeed, when you and I were kids. I hear that ratio was about 109%.

  4. Starryflights

    Wolverine :“Total debt” means debt held by the public plus intragovernmental debt.


  5. We just went through the most serious recession since the Great Depression. Extra spending was necessary. Will the same rate of spending continue through whatever doomsdate date is selected? Probably not.

    There is a certain level of expectation of services in the country. To start throwing the reductions about like those in the article is irresponsible. I wouldn’t rule out additional taxes for everyone including the sacred rich.

  6. marinm

    Sounds like a good start to me.

  7. Pat.Herve

    during a recession, the revenues go down, spending goes up. Unemployment, welfare, medicaid, housing assistance, etc – all spending increases.

    Am I am not defending the out of control spending during the past 10 years. But to not be able to find any DOD, DHS or VA cuts —– very political. I can find spending cuts in DOD that does not affect our Military, in DHS that does not affect our Security and in the VA that does not affect our Veterans. How many contracts are out there that are inflated to just spend, ‘so that we get our budget next year’.

    When Treasury Secretary Paul O’Neill warned about the rise in the deficit in 2002, he was shown the door, and told ‘Deficits do not matter’. But today, the same people that said they do not matter, are all of a sudden concerned that they do matter. It Amazes me how short our memories are, including my own.

  8. Raymond Beverage

    Now toss in Congress looking at a way for States to be able to declare bankruptcy to restructure their debts as reported in the NY Times:

  9. We obviously cannot have prisons without guards, or borders without border guards or many of the things we have read about. You can’t start these kinds of cuts during a recession. Throwing a whole lot more people on the unemployment dole isn’t the answer.

    There is always waste in any company or any govt. Usually the best way to start finding waste is ask the employees. They can tell you about the pens that don’t work so you go through 10 when you should be using 1. The last time employees turned in answers, someone who shall go nameless made a big production and asked if this was the best they could do.

    One huge savings could be cutting down on travel expenses. With all the go-to meetings software and cell phones, much travel could be illiminated.

    All savings starts with the little things. Little things add up.

  10. Emma

    Figure out what the hell it is we are actually fighting for, fund the hell out of it and go for it full force, no holds barred. Or if the decision is to withdraw troops, then have the guts to withdraw them. Stop killing soldiers with vacillation. Then we can return to the domestic agenda and figure out what we can and can’t afford without this economy-draining war. Surely it was no big secret to candidate Obama that he would be inheriting a messy war if he were to be elected. Chanting “It’s Bush’s war” won’t help the deficit, either. And the Repubs can’t keep pretending it’s Obama’s problem, either.

  11. Kill the departments of Energy, Education, HUD, and Homeland Security. Commerce would be good too. If we must keep Soc. Sec., raise the age for payments and tax EVERYBODY and, at least, turn it into a bond fund. Medicare/Medicaid – phase it out, if possible. Put the entire budget on the table. Congress needs to decide what to keep and what to cut. Do we need 10 carrier groups to meet our treaty obligations? What are our goals in Afghanistan? If we are leaving at an arbitrary date, then leave now. No more pork. No more earmarks. If a district needs money, put in an appropriations bill and get it debated. Repeal ObamaCare, repeal the rest of the stimulus money that has not yet been used. Cut our losses. No more bailouts. Cancel the extra, unneeded engine for the F-35. However, build enough F-22’s and F-35’s to take advantage of economies of scale. Either they are the replacements for our existing aircraft or the are just toys. Right now, domestic spending in Medicare/Medicaid and Social Security takes up 58% of the existing budget. Which also happens to equal the amount that is funded by domestic revenue sources. EVERYTHING ELSE IS BORROWED.

    We either cut to the bone and start over or China owns us. They have 1 trillion lent to us. We need to pay that back asap. Make Congress actually do their job. Just because we are in a recession is no reason to spend us into oblivion. Where has all this spent money actually helped? How about canceling all taxes for the first year? We’d still be in higher debt, but the economy would get a jump start.

    However, since I’m a little bit more hardcore on cutting than the current House, I’m just happy that they are present real cuts instead of smaller increases and calling that a cut.

  12. Cargo, do you realize how unrealistic your plan is? Do you realize that most Americans wouldn’t be satisfied with what you just proposed?

    I have no problem whittling the dept of Ed down to a lesser agency. I think education is mainly a state and local issue.

    DHS- would you settle for reorganization? Homeland security is still a pretty big issue to most people.

    Rather than running around slicing and dicing, America needs to look at the job of the each dept and agency and see what it does and see if it can combine. Doing something smarter is better than just eliminating.

    Medicare, medicaid and social security have to be replaced with something. Scaring old people is a good way to get your guys pitched out of office.

    I am warning everyone right now…anything that remotely threatens the security of the baby boomers is going to be political suicide. And the numbers just aren’t on your side.

    All those horny GI’s right off the transport ships ensured that this country wouldn’t fold to this political absurdity. Enjoy it now…the drums and fife will be short lived.

  13. Oh, I know my plan is unrealistic. But its necessary. DHS is completely unnecessary. All it did was add another layer of bureaucracy. Medicare, medicaid, and SS, are all eating our budget alive. Dept of Energy was formed to get us energy independence. FAIL. Education – to improve our education – FAIL. Commerce – Why do we need a department for private transactions and have you seen the state of our exports? – FAIL HUD – FAIL

    Time to put everything on the table. Keep what we have to and justify it. If we keep it all, no more whining by Congress and we can vote as we see fit.

  14. I dont think the dept of energy is a failure. I also don’t think it formed just to make us energy independent.

    I also don’t think the dept of ed is failure. How has it failed?

    I am just not sure why you are calling entire departments failures. Based on what?

    I would probably turn Dept of Ed into an agency but that is because I feel education is state and local. I have seen what happens when federal gets involved. You get some piece of dumb ass legislation like NCLB.

  15. Energy was formed by Carter to get us more energy independent. Education was formed to improve education.

    We are more dependent upon foreign sources and getting more so everyday.
    Our students are not learning. State education is losing authority to fads.

    If a department hasn’t done what it was created for, stop spending money on it.
    If there are less centralized alternatives for it, stop spending federal money on it.

    1. I beg to differ that students aren’t learning. Why would you say that?

      Some students aren’t learning. Probably the offspring of those who didn’t learn 20 years ago and the grand-thugs of those who didn’t learn 40 years ago.

      At what point do we have to stop wasting resources on those who simply do not want to learn? Do we pour the same energy on them as we do those who are aspire to higher education?

      One area we have failed as a nation is providing solid vocational training for kids. I would pour resources there for people who aren’t interested in an academic course of study. I would have alternative education for thugs.

  16. The military is finding out that the current crop of possible recruits are failing the ASVAB. They can’t think and can barely read. Colleges are turning out students that haven’t actually learned anything. The NCLB scam is directly tied to federal authority over education.

    Since the Ed dept was invented because “Johnny couldn’t read” and yet its gotten worse, why have it at all, save the money and let the states control education completely.

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