Saturday, March 02, 2013

Sequestration: How has it affected you?

On March 1, 2013 Congress allowed the United States to fall victim to one-sided, across the board government spending cuts.  The sequester is one sided, because revenue is not an element.  It is across the board, because most government spending accounts will be cut back without consideration for the importance of the spending.

Ironically, Congressional salaries are unaffected by the cutbacks even though that element of government spending is assumably one that most of America would agree should be cut.

The effects that the sequester will have on American society and the economy has been varied depending on the source of the observation.

Democrats, including the President have expressed grave concerns that society and the economy will suffer as a result of the cuts.  Although the President has said  the economic effects will not be catastrophic, he issued concerns about a sluggish recovery and has pointed out that certain individuals will suffer as a result.  Being a President of all the people, he has concern for those who depend on the government for essential services.

Republicans, including House speaker Boehner, have essentially welcomed it and expect it will go a long way to reigning in the wild spending that the government has supposedly become accustomed to and which otherwise would have, in their opinion, ruined our economy.  Never mind that the facts prove otherwise.  Republicans have been planning the sequester in their arsenal of tools to eliminate government for a few years now.  A powerpoint slide prepared by John Boehner shows this was a Republican plan since 2011.

With Boehner being a leader of the Party that protects the assets of the rich, he expressed his demands in Congress that any substitute for the sequester would not include an increase in taxes or closing tax loop holes for the rich.  In my opinion, Republicans in Congress follow two philosophies that are essential to their existence; a "head in the sand" philosophy and an "out of sight, out of mind" philosophy.

Regardless of the opinions of others, I want to give you a chance to record the impact that the sequester has had on you.  For that reason I have created the poll at the top of the side-bar.

The poll questions are intended to be answered by American citizens, however citizens of other countries may respond if they believe the American sequester has an impact on them.

A few explanatory notes about the poll questions:

You can only select one answer, so please try to select the most accurate answer for your situation.

I used the term "essential" to describe government services, without which you are severely affected either physically, medically, psychologically, educationally or financially.

I used the term "nice to have" to describe government services, without which you suffer some form of minor inconvenience, such as waiting longer in TSA screening lines at the airport.

I realize that the effects of the sequester may become worse on particular individuals as time goes on, so if you have not voted, please feel free to take the poll at any future date.  You can see the results of the polling at any point in time by visiting any blog on my site.  I will record the results over time and report back on the time related results in a future blog.  In the past, blog polls have not received a lot of responses, but I encourage you to participate in this important research.

Thank you for your participation.

No comments: