Simon Van Kempen: Debt ceiling debate too one-sided

Whew! The debt ceiling debate is over — well, is it?

More like just punted down the field, but what’s that done for state governments? Alex wrote on Tuesday about the effect on arts funding cuts and cited Gov. Sam Brownback in Kansas as someone who’s done the slash and burn to his state’s arts budget, all the while campaigning to keep five-year depreciation of private corporate jets versus the seven years that commercial carriers have to depreciate their asset’s life.

While the bill that eventually passed in the House & the Senate was ultimately a compromise that no one particularly was happy with, the Republicans intransigence that no new taxes or tax increases could be allowed is plainly just absurd.

I’ve lived in the US for 11 years, and in that time we’ve fought two wars that were treated as off budget items for far too long.  Yes, I know we were told they’d (or at least Iraq would but didn’t) pay for themselves but not once have we the people been asked to pay for these expenses. If we had, do the politicians really think we’d have said yes, let’s slash all arts funding (or Medicare, Social Security or other programs) to pay for them? I think not.

We need to feed the mind as well as our stomachs and arbitrary cuts in just one area aren’t the way to go. Compromise is a good thing but for me this debate became too one-sided.

Here’s hoping the new committee set up by this bill to look at additional ways of reducing the amount of U.S. debt isn’t as one-sided as the bill passed last weekend. I mean, I know that in my life when times were tough financially, I didn’t just look to reduce my expenses, but looked for a part-time job to increase money coming in. The feds need to raise revenues too.



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