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Top fed judges in 49 states send message-congress
Last comment by sebekm 11 months, 2 weeks ago.

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Top federal judges in 49 states did something highly unusual last week: they collectively sent a message to Congress. The message wasn't subtle: sequestration budget cuts, they said, were undermining the nation's justice system, jeopardizing public safety, and have the potential to cause a "devastating and long-lasting impact" on the federal courts.

Conditions are arguably worse for scientific and medical researchers dependent on grants, and Sam Stein explained in great detail last week how the sequester has become "a cancerous tumor inside the world of science." Stein talked to one scientist at the University of Virginia who said, simply, "We are in deep s**t."

The New York Times reports today that five months into sequestration, "much of the United States government is grounded." At this year's National Space Symposium in Colorado, for example, representatives from France, Germany, and China made the trip -- but no one from NASA could be there because the agency couldn't afford to send anyone.

And then there are the effects on children.

Head Start programs across the country eliminated services for 57,000 children in the coming school year to balance budgets diminished by the federal sequester, cutting 1.3 million days from Head Start center calendars and laying off or reducing pay for more than 18,000 employees, according to federal government data scheduled for release Monday. [...]

Most programs did completely cut services to some children. The sequester "also impacted how many staff kept their jobs, how many dental screenings and health screenings are available and what happens to those families as we go into a new school year," the official said.

There's just no reason for the United States to do this to ourselves on purpose. It's a slow-motion disaster on auto-pilot that could be stopped easily, if only Congress would flip a switch and turn the darn thing off.

To reiterate a point from a few weeks ago, let's not forget that sequestration cuts have been condemned by House Republicans and they've been condemned by Senate Republicans. The cuts are hurting the economy, and by some accounts, they're hurting our national security.

So maybe GOP lawmakers will agree to end this madness? According to House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.), he's open to the possibility, just so long as President Obama cuts Social Security and Medicare.

In other words, we're once again looking at extortion politics at its most ridiculous -- either the White House cuts social-insurance programs to Republicans' satisfaction, or Republicans will continue to embrace a policy that deliberately hurts the country.

And Cantor sees this as responsible because, in his mind, the deficit that's shrinking is actually "growing."

Latest Activity: Aug 19, 2013 at 7:28 PM

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JimmyMack commented on Monday, Aug 19, 2013 at 19:48 PM

Republicanism is Up side Down and in a long slow downward spiral that will end in a muted sound emanating a puff of dark, black smoke.

sebekm commented on Monday, Aug 19, 2013 at 21:57 PM

Both sides are responsible for sequestration. The President and his party proposed it, and the GOP agreed. It only went into effect because both sides refused to compromise enough to prevent its implementation. They still can shortstop some of the upcoming provisions, but if the Democrats expect the Republicans to just cave and give them everything they want, they're crazy.

The sequestration is enforcing spending cuts that are required to help us get our fiscal house in order. Everyone gets to suffer. I say:

Let it ride.

PoliticsNation commented on Monday, Aug 19, 2013 at 21:59 PM

"let it ride".. you really are far to the right, seb.....

sebekm commented on Monday, Aug 19, 2013 at 22:01 PM

Thank you....yes, on this I am right....

golfnut31316 commented on Monday, Aug 19, 2013 at 22:04 PM

The problem is, everyone is NOT suffering.

PoliticsNation commented on Monday, Aug 19, 2013 at 22:06 PM

@golfnut..please expound...

sebekm commented on Tuesday, Aug 20, 2013 at 11:17 AM

"The problem is, everyone is NOT suffering."

As the effects of full sequestration take effect, we (as in the vast majority) will. When I said "everyone," it was a given that some - due to power, position, financial status, etc. - will "suffer" less (or perhaps not at all). But the typical sacred cows (entitlements, defense) across the board must be squeezed to get our fiscal house in order. Just like the cities going bankrupt due to debt, our country faces the same fate down the road if we don't get a handle on SPENDING *now*. It is spending increases - by leaps and bounds - that is at the root of the problem. Taxing every penny made by all the millionaires in this country would be like a mosquito taking a bite out of an elephant's butt compared to the overall problem.

It is GOVERNMENT SPENDING that is at the root of the problem. Since our elected representatives can't solve the problem like adults with fiscal compromise, they have to be treated like children. I give the President credit for recognizing this when he and his administration suggested sequestration in the first place. He doesn't want to take credit for it because it would p*ss off his constituency, but under the circumstances it (sequestration) is EXACTLY what is necessary.

Let it ride.

golfnut31316 commented on Tuesday, Aug 20, 2013 at 15:49 PM

Those who are running our government and who imposed sequestration, are NOT suffering. There pay has not been cut, they do not have furlough days, THEY are currently on vacation. THEY are the 535 or 538 elected official in Washington D.C. that have put us in this mess.

sebekm commented on Tuesday, Aug 20, 2013 at 15:58 PM

There's not a whole lot we can do - individually - about it. Only when the outcry is so loud by so many people will the DC culture change. Until, we meander along doing the best we (THE PEOPLE) can.

That's democracy - supposedly the envy of the civilized world (but not of the autocrats or the dictators).

HMJC commented on Tuesday, Aug 20, 2013 at 16:24 PM

That really is the crux of the issue; the policy makers do not suffer the effects of their policies. I would say furlogh congress for a day but they need all the time time they can get...

HMJC commented on Tuesday, Aug 20, 2013 at 16:25 PM

anf you know what? Let it ride! That is the only way those jugheads are going to start feeling the pain when they are voted out of a job...

sebekm commented on Tuesday, Aug 20, 2013 at 22:00 PM

They could have started to "feel our pain" by being disenrolled in their cushy health care plan and forced to participate in ObamaCare. But nooooooooooooooooooo - they were permitted to weasel out of it. The only way to get the people (especially the Democrats) riled up enough to demand change we can REALLY believe in is to let the sequester ride.

HMJC commented on Wednesday, Aug 21, 2013 at 08:29 AM

Democrats are not known for hard choices; they have always tried to do just enough for each special interest group to demonstrate the "love". The reallity being it is time for some "tough love" until we right the ship.

sebekm commented on Wednesday, Aug 21, 2013 at 12:31 PM


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