Alpha Male Budget Proposal Bad For America
Donald Trump’s White House will release a budget outline today which will call for a “massive” increase in spending for the military, intelligence, and homeland security. This exorbitant spending will come at the price of safety net measures to protect Americans and diplomacy funding which is the best way to avert the need to use the military.
The early read on the budget outline proposes large spending reductions in many governmental agencies and social safety net programs so Trump can have his shiny new nuclear weapons. Trump has proposed a $54 billion increase in defense spending. Social safety net programs, aside from the big entitlement programs for retirees, would also be hit hard.
It should be noted this proposal in part runs counter to almost a decade of Republican budgeting orthodoxy. Speaker Paul Ryan gained prominence in the early days of the Republican majority by making significant tweaks to entitlement programs. Almost everyone in the Republican Party believes it’s necessary to overhaul entitlements to balance the budget. Trump, however, has ruled it out. Another fight may be brewing inside the GOP.
The mood of the country as registered by the energized town hall meetings for members of congress may shape the outcome of this proposal. After all, the budget process is a long one with many players who will have more of a say on the final outcome than any person who sits in the White House. But this proposal does tell us where the Trump priorities are and they are not with the taxpayers seated around the dinner table. Defense over diplomacy will place sons and daughters in harms way while security over the safety net will hurt children and struggling workers who need assistance to make it from month to month.
This is where the tire meets the road and members of congress will no longer be able to pretend they are simply potted plants. Congressional buy-in will no longer be optional. Starting with Tuesday’s speech before Congress Trump is starting to put legislative meat on his rhetorical bones. Up to now there has been no substance to his first month in office legislatively speaking. Now however, senators and house members must either get on board the crazy train that’s leaving the station or jump to the platform and demand a new destination to the future.