Sorry for another budget post so soon, but my wife forwarded me an article I thought was worth sharing. It seems that there actually are some federal programs out there that are so bad that both parties can agree to kill them when a “government shutdown” is the alternative.
Congressional leaders agreed to end eight programs this week. You can see a profile of each program here. Some were redundant, some had outlived their usefulness, and at least one program ($30 million to “revitalize” buildings at the Smithsonian Institution) was unnecessary because–wonder of wonders–private contributions were sufficient to cover the project. As my friend Shawn Ritenour often reminds us, culture survives even when the government doesn’t pay for it.
Of course, these eight programs combined ($1.2 billion) account for a laughably small percentage of the deficit. Defunding some earmarks brought the total spending reduction to just over $4 billion. So all we need to do is go through this process 400 more times in the next couple of months and this year’s projected $1.6 trillion will be eliminated! What could be simpler?