This little post on Josh Marshall's site really made me take notice. The confirmation hearings for Chuck Hagel have been all about how he's a traitor for opposing the ultimately futile and failed "surge" in Iraq, which allowed the U.S. to get the hell out under a fragile fiction of stability so that all hell could break lose last year -- not that anybody in the U.S. has been paying attention. Trust me, Iraq is now coming apart at the seams. Also too how he is an insufficiently mad dog Zionist.
So far nobody has asked about, say, Syria, but the key point of the linked piece, and what has me quaking in my boots, is that nobody has asked him about the sequester, which it increasingly appears is going to happen because Paul Ryan evidently wants it. Or so he says. I personally don't think an 8% cut in the military budget would be a national security disaster, in fact I think it would be good for both national and global security; but I'm worried about everything else that will get trashed, including funding for my own research of course, but more than that, Great Depression II which will very likely ensue.
Of course nobody who brought this disaster on us will ever be held accountable.
Or as RL Borosage puts it (more or less as I put it myself a few days ago:
We need a return to sensible governance. Repeal the sequester -- sudden and deep across the board cuts are idiotic. Promise to pay the debts already incurred and stop threatening a default that would shake global finances. Fund the government while working on a budget reflecting new priorities.
Commit to growing our way out of the hole we are in. Invest in areas vital to our economy and to our people. Pay for those commitments in ways that makes sense. Put people back to work and watch the deficits and debt burden come down.
That means launching a major five-year initiative to Rebuild America -- modernizing our decrepit infrastructure to make it a competitive advantage while creating jobs. Make the investments needed to provide every child with a world-class education -- from universal pre-school to skilled teachers to affordable college. Invest in research and development and sustain America as the global hotbed of innovation.
Pay for these and other vital priorities by ending the war in Afghanistan and reducing our empire of bases. Crack down on overseas tax dodges. Raise taxes on millionaires and tax the income of investors at the same rate as that of workers. End the obscene subsidies to big oil, big Pharma and big Agra.
This isn't rocket science. It is common sense. Yet, at this point, it can't be heard in the bedlam of a Washington afflicted with deficit delusions and austerity hysteria.