If it was easy, everyone would do it

I don’t know about you, but I’m a little tired of all the polls that show that people want spending cuts, but not to any programs or anything.  Take this, for instance, from Jason Kusnicki:

When it comes time to balance the budget, majorities want:

  • To cut Social Security for the wealthy. But no cuts to Social Security.
  • To raise the retirement age to 69. But again, no cuts to Social Security.
  • To cut Medicare for the wealthy. But no cuts to Medicare.
  • Don’t cut education, either. Instead, cut federal subsidies to the states. (These are in large part subsidies for education and Medicare, with some infrastructure too. Any guesses on whether the public wants to cut infrastructure?)

Obviously, the third one interests me the most, but they are all the same.

Why are we surprised by this?  Why do we keep acting as if it’s news? Why do we listen?

This is human nature. The elderly want social security and Medicare untouched. The Midwest wants the farm subsidies untouched. I want the NIH budget untouched. Others want their stuff untouched.

That’s fine. That’s the way it should be. So when you cut something, you will upset someone. That’s how it goes. But when it’s clear that Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, Defense, and interest on the debt already total about what we bring in through revenue, not addressing those things is silly.

The people we elect have to make difficult choices. Those choices may make those people unpopular. Some of them may lose their jobs. Deal with it. They chose this; they wanted the responsibility. I’m tired of politicians who think we can balance the budget without either raising taxes or addressing the core components of our spending.

It’s their fault, not human nature. I’d appreciate more focus on them and less on these polls.

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