Sequester Cuts Will Steal Your Meat, Ground Your Air Force, Make Women Shut Down Their Small Businesses

Such a total Vilsack. ||| Whitehouse.govWhitehouse.govThe Senate Appropriations Committee has helpfully collated all of the executive branch's official Sequester Hysteria into one hilarious document of bureaucratic pants-wetting. Let's watch how politicians and bureaucrats are spending your tax money to scare the bejeebus out of you about the consequences of not spending more of your tax money for this one year! Here's a fraction of some of the many dire consequences alleged:

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack:

A nationwide shutdown of meat and poultry plants.

Deputy Commerce Secretary Rebecca Blank:

The Department's International Trade Administration (ITA) would be forced, under sequestration, to reduce its support for America's exporters, trimming assistance to U.S. businesses looking to increase their exports and expand operations into foreign markets by nearly $15 million.

Defense Secretary Vice Chair Richard Selby Leon Panetta:

The Air Force will be forced to cut flying hours and Weapon system maintenance. Most Air Force flying units (especially later deploying units) Will be below acceptable readiness standards by the end of FY 2013. [...]

If these unfortunate events occur, We will have to take more drastic and irreversible actions.

Education Secretary Arne Duncan:

The sequester would also likely require the Department to furlough many of its own employees for multiple days. This would significantly harm the Department's ability to prevent fraud, Waste, and abuse in these very large, complex student financial assistance programs. Furloughing employees would also hurt all the Department's other activities, including making grant awards on a timely basis.

Energy Secretary Steven Chu:

The Department of Energy works across energy sectors to reduce the cost and speed the adoption of clean energy technologies. These efforts range from cost-competitive high-efficiency solar installations to carbon capture and storage to next generation biofuels and high-efficiency vehicle technologies. Under sequestration, funding reductions would decelerate the Nation's transition into a clean energy economy, and could weaken efforts to become more energy independent and energy secure, while spurring overall economic growth.

And such a Karen! ||| Whitehouse.govWhitehouse.govSmall Business Administration Administrator Karen Mills:

SBA's nationwide counseling network of 68 district offices, nearly 900 Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs), 110 Women's Business Centers (WBCs) and 350 chapters of SCORE, would all lose significant funding due to sequestration.

So very much more at the link; please go spelunking for favorites & leave 'em in the comments!

To elaborate on a previous point: If it's true that the Pentagon cannot do basic freaking maintenance on its air fleet after a 70 percent increase in spending so far this young century, then that is the real scandal. As for a big chunk of the other stuff, I'm fairly confident that small businesses will continue small businessing even if the federal government only operates, I dunno, 800 Small Business Development Centers.

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  • Sevo||

    Boy, I'm glad I built that bomb shelter out back! The world's gonna end!

  • Scarecrow Repair||

    You didn't build that!

    And you won't be able to if sequestration hits.

  • eyeroller||

    Duncan says: if you cut our funding, we won't be able to prevent waste, fraud and abuse!

    Now THAT's a classic.

  • Sevo||

    I guess it never occurred to him that not handing out the dough would *really* cut waste and fraud.

  • Spartacus||

    Or, they could cancel a few high-speed rail projects and cover the whole thing in one fell swoop.

  • Paul.||

    They could cut all green energy programs and stop all farm subsidies, which would then release us from our direct payments to foreign countries due to our losses in the WTO courts because of our unfair agricultural subsidies.

    It's a fascinating cascading effect of spending reductions.

  • ||

    But who would help the poor wittle famiwy farmwers?

  • Paul.||

    The immbizzible hand of the free markut!

  • Jerryskids||

    It sounds so simple to say that the feds could easily cut their budgets by some percentage by merely cutting out unnecessary programs. The problem is this: show me one single government administrator who would admit that a single penny of their budget goes to unnecessary programs. In fact, show me one single government administrator who would admit that doubling or tripling their budget would result in a single penny going to an unnecessary program.

    Remember always, the primary purpose of any system is to perpetuate itself regardless of its' stated purpose. The purpose of government is not to govern, it is to grow. Cutting even a single penny is obviously a disastrous failure to achieve their primary purpose.

  • ||

    Spot on.

  • ||

    Why would you ask the administrator of a program whether his or her program is useful? Why would you ask anyone in the executive branch such a question? It's not up to them to decide usefulness.

  • CatoTheElder||

    Sounds like the Obama is doing some serious prioritization to ensure that sequester will make Americans as miserable as possible.

  • wareagle||

    that's who he has been all along. Shared misery; hey, is there a name for that?

  • Specail Sauce||

    I think it starts with a C and ends in an M...

  • 34lbs||

    Cum hahahahaha

  • John||

    DOE will stop guarding nuclear weapons before they stop the green energy gravy train. Chu is really trying to take the Pauli Krugnuts price for worst Nobel Prize winner ever.

  • CatoTheElder||

    Chu actually did some science once upon a time.

    Obama's Nobel, OTOH ...

  • Zeb||

    Worst winner, not least deserving. Krugman once did some actual economics too.

    Obama has to be close to the top of the list for least deserving, though.

  • RighteousTyrant||

    I can't imagine anyone having won for less than he did. He was awarded because of his "potential" if I remember right.

    I wonder if come 2017 they'll then hand him a medal for participation, as well.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    What we need right now is a clear message to the people of this country. This message must be read in every newspaper, heard on every radio, seen on every television. This message must resound throughout the entire Interlink. I want this country to realize that we stand on the edge of oblivion. I want every man, woman, and child to understand how close we are to chaos. I want *everyone* to *remember*, why they *need* us!

  • $park¥||

    As much as many people around here dislike that movie, I thought it was great.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Apparently MO and BO skipped it on their movie night at the White House.

  • NowWhatian Boghog||

    BO was probably just confused that they didn't drone the guy with the knives.

  • Ghetto Slovak Goatherder||

    Hah! Just showed this movie to a leftist acquaintance who literally matched with Jill Stein and the Green Party on that political test that was going around during the election. Don't know if she took anything from it though.

  • robc||

    ^^^This is why I dont filter Tulpa

    Of couse, he seems to be opposing law and order now.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Norsefire didn't follow the rule of law.

  • RyanXXX||

    England Prevails

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Hmm, the message I'm getting from this melodrama is that the federal govt has its tendrils in far too many places in the US economy. Nobody panics over McDonalds cutting 1% of its expenditures.

  • db||

    Yeah, and Wal*Mart and the Kochtopus are the ones that exert unreasonable control over the US society.

  • Killazontherun||

    Nobody refers to it as a cut when McDonald's expands its expenditures by 3% while redirecting a mere 1% to purchasing fish instead of beef, either.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    $1 Fish Fillets -- I'ma gonna make em pay.

  • Killazontherun||

    Had one for lunch. Damn, could use another.

  • Rasilio||

    "The Air Force will be forced to cut flying hours and Weapon system maintenance. Most Air Force flying units (especially later deploying units) Will be below acceptable readiness standards by the end of FY 2013."

    Bullshit alert.

    Ok, I suppose they could cut flying hours as one way of reducing costs, fuel is pretty expensive and jets tend to consume a ton of it.

    However reduced Flying hours would reduce the need for maintenance which is done on a by the usage hour, and that combined with the fact that 95% of the cost of maintenance being a sunk cost (Salaries being paid the the airmen doing the maintenance, their tools, and the parts & supplies which have already been purchased) I fail to see how you could actually achieve any short term savings on the maintenance front through any means other than flying the planes less frequently.

    That said the idea that the Air Force couldn't cut it's budget by 1% anywhere but through cutting regular flight operations is a joke, just cancel this years Red Flag exercise and you'd get pretty damn close to the amount you need to save (although there would be a ton of mid level officers and NCO's pissed at losing their annual free trip to Vegas)

  • Sevo||

    I'll bet charging green fees at the base golf course would go a long ways to getting maintenance back where it should be.

  • Steve G||

    Maintenance is not always done on a usage basis, particularly large depot work which is based upon calendar time. We (AF) are cutting depot inductions significantly for the rest of this fiscal year. You make a good point about the sunk costs, but the major commands do "pay for" these inductions and are cutting them to achieve the 18% target reduction in flying hour program and weapons system sustainment. You may be right that some portion of it is a shell game since we're essentially paying ourselves for this work; I just highly doubt your 95% wag.
    Oh, and Red Flag is on the chopping block, along w/ essentially all other exercises, air shows, routing training, etc.

  • Rasilio||

    Well remember, in that 95% number I was including the parts.

    It's not like they run down the the Goodyear store and buy a new tire everytime one needs to be replaced, they already have a large stock of tires purchased in wharehouses or ready for delivery on demand from the vendor. Given enough time of course those stocks would be depleted but replacing the tire basically costs the Air Force nothing right now

  • Steve G||

    True, but comsumables like tires aren't what is going to be grounding jets, it's the PDMs themselves that will go overdue. That and the reduced flying hours (pilot proficiency) combine to impact the readiness levels.

  • Kendall Rigdon||

    It's about time that the men and women in our military realize that the mismanagement of our military forces is just as bad an abuse as Obama phones. We feed and formation about 50,000 troops a year for NATO based upon a treaty created to stop the USSR.

    Newsflash! The USSR fell. Russia is a capitalism mecca at this moment. Stop wasting billions of our dollars funded into European economies. The NATO treaty should be abandoned. 50,000 troops, facilities and their families belong here, at home. Let those guys handle airport security and get rid of the fat oafs with the TSA. Cut an agency completely and let those families be close to home and spend our tax dollars HERE with us.

    And while your at it. Stop making aircraft carriers. We don't need them. They spend a billion dollars a month for each carrier group. What a waste. This is to say nothing of all embassies that serve no purpose in every corner of the globe.

  • Steve G||

    Trust me, I'm conflicted on this as a born-again libertarian working in the Pentagon, I see the thrash that folks are going through trying to figure out how to trim 18% (more like 30+% when compressed in remaining half of year). From this vantage point they are not "cuts" (reductions in future growth), but actual cuts that need to be figured out.
    You gotta also realize, we're not still in Europe because of Russia. There's more to it than that. Not to say I don't think we should have the overseas presence we do, but you've oversimplified the problem. Same goes w/ the carriers, we don't make them just because. We organize/train/equip to meet certain requirements that start w/ National Strategy and works downwards. Ideally, you'd change the requirement before adjusting the resources. Unfortunately, we are now in the territory where the resources are driving the requirements.

  • Paul.||

    If we take these breathless claims at face value, we can make a couple of clear conclusions:

    1. Government is so big, so powerful, so ever-present in our daily lives, that we literally wouldn't survive in a temporary budget snafu.

    2. If we DO survive, then we can really begin to question the value of that big government... what exactly is it really doing for us?

  • $park¥||

    If we DO survive, then we can really begin to question the value of that big government... what exactly is it really doing for us?

    Why start now? The only people who will are the people who already are.

  • Paul.||

    When I speak of "we", I'm speaking of everyone outside of this tiny group of 22 regulars on Hit & Run, AKA Libertarian America.

  • $park¥||

    It's a nice thought, but it will never catch on. It's like asking what exactly goes into hot dogs.

  • JW||

    But, what about my roof? I don't want it to start leaking with the Federal Roof Inspectors not on the job!

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Indeed, one wonders how BO plans to cut spending in the unspecified future, as he continually says he wants to do, when the slightest reduction brings about Armageddon.

  • Paul.||

    Targeted cuts. Not the wild, crazed, hack and slash, run and gun cuts that the sequester represents.

    Or, more accurately, Obama believes in cutting the budget in general, just not situationally.

    God that line works with everything.

  • JW||

    Education Secretary Arne Duncan:

    This would significantly harm the Department's ability to prevent commit fraud, Waste, and abuse in these very large, complex student financial assistance programs.

    Fixed. I didn't know that Waste got its own sub-secretary.

  • Paul.||

    Dude, it's got its own President!

  • JW||

    BRING IT.

  • Gadianton||

    Sooo... They'll have to stick their noses into my business marginally less than they did previously?

    The Horror! The Horror!

  • $park¥||

    No, they won't. You'll just have to wait longer for somebody to do it from time to time.

  • some guy||

    And you won't be able to conduct your business until they do. It's the perfect scam. They can make you hurt at will, even if they are sitting at home on furlough.

  • Spoonman.||

    I like meat, but if the sequester happening means that in the government's tantrum it'll stop all meat processing, I'll happily eat beans as I watch people begin to hate the government more and more.

  • some guy||

    I hope that the sequestration makes people realize how little value government adds to the world. I fear that government regulations will prevent this from being apparent. People will think that the meat isn't available because the government can't inspect it, rather than realizing the meat isn't available because the government insists on inspecting it.

  • GILMORE||

    IF YOU ALLOW THE SEQUESTER TO HAPPEN ALL YOUR FOODS WILL BE HORSE MEAT

  • Zeb||

    I could live with that.

  • Sarg221||

    Looks like deer season will be starting a little early. Now if only I could find some ammo for my AR-15...

  • Christina||

    It's good to see that Obama's crack team of TOP MEN is so capable of making smart executive decisions about what to fund and what to cut. That reminds me of a campaign promise made by a young, idealistic Senator Obama. He wouldn't make sweeping, stupid cuts, but rather precision cuts, akin to those of a surgeon with a scalpel. I guess when Obama thinks surgeon, he's thinking of the guy who bled you to get the "bad humours" out.

  • some guy||

    Or the Civil War era surgeon who delayed treatment until your leg got gangrene and then insisted on cutting it off.

  • DJF||

    Sequestration turned me into a Newt.

  • ||

    Their tears are yummy and sweet.

  • Paul.||

    Yeah, right up until you walk down to your mailbox to pick up your government cheque, and you're attacked by zombies before you can get there.

  • ||

    Because everone knows the National Drug Intelligence Center is the only thing holding back the zombie hordes.

  • Paul.||

    Are you doubting the very thin thread that holds this nation together?

  • DaveAnthony||

    Sound and fury.

  • Virginian||

    http://www.nypost.com/p/news/o.....IEbqRs3rZO

    Pinkwashing is apparently a thing.

  • ||

    Israel has put an effort into selling the point that they're the only gay-friendly state in the middle east. They are legitimately gay friendly, but I think they sell it so hard to win the hearts and minds of American and European liberals.

    Unfortunately many (not all) gay rights groups are invested in a holistic lefty agenda and the generic lefty Palestine/Israel stance trumps the gay rights specific stance.

  • IamNotEvil||

    'Sequester Cuts Will Steal Your Meat,'

    Already have a full freezer, bought a quarter beef in January and helped butcher it myself.

    'Ground Your Air Force,'

    Owning a fighter jet is not a constitutionally protected right and anyone that has one is a murderous baby killing monster. (or so I've heard)

    'Make Women Shut Down Their Small Businesses'

    Hookers are small business? Does this mean that they stop charging or that they stay off the street?

    Call me when the politicians paychecks start bouncing, then I'll celebrate.

  • GILMORE||

    THE SEQUESTER WILL =

    GROUND YOUR MEAT

    STEAL YOUR AIR FORCE

    FORCE HOOKERS TO GO CORPORATE

    ....

    THE SEQUESTER IS THE END OF ALL YOU KNOW

  • Generic Stranger||

    I thought they were supposed to be giving us reasons to be AGAINST cutting spending...

  • The Late P Brooks||

    Energy Secretary Steven Chu:

    The Department of Energy works across energy sectors to reduce the cost and speed the adoption of clean energy technologies. These efforts range from cost-competitive high-efficiency solar installations to carbon capture and storage to next generation biofuels and high-efficiency vehicle technologies. Under sequestration, funding reductions would decelerate the Nation's transition into a clean energy economy, and could weaken efforts to become more energy independent and energy secure, while spurring overall economic growth.

    No shit, that's what they do?

    Can we please just take Chu out behind the barn and shoot him?

  • Paul.||

    Can we please just take Chu out behind the barn and shoot him?

    Prosecutable.

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