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Your Opinion: Spending cuts raise concerns

Your Opinion: Spending cuts raise concerns

August 6th, 2011 by Robert Haslag, Centertown in News

Dear Editor;

I have written letters dealing with how we accumulated our debt and the common sense reality of revenue as a necessary and fair component in addressing that debt. To complete the favored metaphor, "the three-legged stool," I must look at how the Republican majority's "cuts only process" is working.

The simple math is revealing. Most credible economists accept that President Obama's administration has helped create more than two million jobs.

It is also verified that contractions in local, state and federal spending have subtracted 400,000 public sector jobs, including 2,000 teachers in Missouri. It is difficult to make headway reducing the unemployment figure when you're adding unemployed at such a pace.

This Republican cutting will eliminate many of the federal spending benefits we Missourians enjoy like Sunrise Beach, which benefited from $5.1 million in federal money when it constructed a new water system; like MoDOT and Jefferson City, which was budgeted $5.2 million for safety improvements on Highway 54 between Missouri 179 and Missouri 17; like Missouri which already lost $19.2 million to support the clean-up of meth labs. Somehow, the idea that this money will just continue to be available lacks a sense of reality.

Things will deteriorate everywhere. Jefferson City will not escape the negative impact as this "cutting" matures.

The Republican budget proposal twice supported by Congresswoman Hartzler cut the enforcement money of the IRS. This division of the IRS produces $10 in receipts for every dollar invested and Vicky Hartzler can't see the value in that.

That will not pass the laugh test for reasonableness in our debt situation. We may have issues with the IRS conceptually, but until the law changes we should pay the taxes we owe. I have.

Then there is the little bureaucracy called the National Nuclear Security Administration. In November 2010, they completed the secure transmission of ten metric tons of enriched uranium and three of plutonium on the Black Sea to a secure location. There was sufficient material to complete 775 nuclear weapons. This bunch of Washington bureaucrats got cut. Yes, cut.

I guess Republicans and Hartzler prefer to send in American troops, invest trillions and sacrifice thousands of lives to what was surely nonetheless an expensive operation that got the job done professionally and quietly.

All to protect the money that funds them.