Dec. 6, 2013
Dec. 2, 2013
Rabbi Moshe Grylak: Attack on Chanukah's scholar-warriors an affront to all people of faith
U.S. boxes in Israel, not Iran: Surrender in Geneva
Jewz in the Newz by Nate Bloom
: Vanessa Bayer & Jacob, the Bar Mitzvah Boy; Adam Levine, nickname "the Bear Jew," is People's Sexiest; Eastwoods Need to Say "Kinehora!"
The Kosher Gourmet by Kim Ode:
Fried and gone to heaven: Dense, fried Slovenian doughnut-like rolls, krofi, on Chanukah is a treat you'll want to eat all year long
: Tracking babies' eyes, scientists find signs of autism in 2-month-olds
Jewz in the Newz by Nate Bloom
: Hunger Games: Jewish Connections; A 'Minyan'of Jewish Celebs Recite the Gettysburg Address On-line; Walter Matthau's Reaction to JFK's Death
Nancy A. Youssef :
Christians too afraid to complain as treatment in new 'democracy' worsens
Jewz in the Newz by Nate Bloom
: Jewish MLB managers; Past and Present; Movie News and Dancing W/the Stars Shocker; Paula Abdul's Israeli bat mitzvah and bio facts rarely reported
Jewish World Review
Feb. 26, 2013/ 16 Adar, 5773
Budget hawks question doomsday scenarios
There's no doubt President Obama is using the so-called Washington Monument maneuver in the fight with Republicans over sequestration budget cuts. It's a time-honored tactic of bureaucratic warfare: When faced with cuts, pick the best-known and most revered symbol of government and threaten to shut it down. Close the Washington Monument and say, "See? This is what happens when you cut the budget." Meanwhile, all sorts of other eminently cuttable government expenditures go untouched.
So now Obama is warning of drastic cuts in food safety, air traffic control, police and fire protection -- in all sorts of services that will allegedly be slashed if the rate of growth of some parts of the federal budget is slowed.
But perhaps the biggest example of the Washington Monument maneuver is coming from the Defense Department, where it goes by another name. Over many decades of defense budget battles, the Pentagon has often used a tactic known as a "gold watch." It means to answer a budget cut proposal by selecting for elimination a program so important and valued -- a gold watch -- that Pentagon chiefs know political leaders will restore funding rather than go through with the cut.
So now, with sequestration approaching, the Pentagon has announced that the possibility of budget cuts has forced the Navy to delay deployment of the carrier USS Harry S. Truman to the Persian Gulf. With tensions with Iran as high as they've ever been, that would leave the U.S. with just one carrier, instead of the preferred two, in that deeply troubled region.
"Already, the threat of these cuts has forced the Navy to delay an aircraft carrier that was supposed to deploy to the Persian Gulf," Obama said at a recent White House appearance, in case anyone missed the news.
Some military analysts were immediately suspicious. "A total gold watch," said one retired general officer who asked not to be named. Military commentator and retired Army Lt. Col. Ralph Peters called the Navy's move "ostentatious," comparing it to "Donald Trump claiming he can't afford a cab."
And Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif., a Marine veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan, is worried not only about the Truman decision but also the Navy's announcement that it cannot afford to refuel another carrier, the USS Abraham Lincoln. "I am concerned that these decisions are being made for the purpose of adding drama to the sequestration debate," Hunter wrote in a Feb. 12 letter to the Pentagon, "given the continuation of other programs that are worthy of cost-cuts or even elimination."
Meanwhile, with a budget higher than it was even at the peak of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, the Pentagon is resisting attempts to force it to audit its own finances. Congress passed a law back in 1990 requiring such an audit, to no avail. Last year, Sens. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., and Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., introduced the Audit the Pentagon Act, which would try again to force a look inside the maze of Pentagon spending.
Now, with the Defense Department sounding the alarm about sequestration, some budget hawks on Capitol Hill are doubtful. "It's difficult to take these doomsday scenarios seriously when the Pentagon can't even audit its own books," says a spokesman for Coburn. "We would argue that the Defense Department has the authority to reprioritize funding toward vital needs and away from less vital spending. As Sen. Coburn has detailed, the department spends nearly $70 billion each year on 'nondefense' defense spending that has nothing to do with our national security."
If the sequestration cuts go into effect, many members of Congress will be watching the Pentagon closely. Hunter, for example, will monitor the Navy's "Green Fleet" biofuel initiative that cost $170 million in 2012-2013, as well as a troubled battlefield software system that has cost $28 billion. Others will be watching for conventional waste. When sequestration came, what did Pentagon leaders cut?
"If you laid off these people, or you diverted this aircraft carrier, then why did you go ahead and travel to a conference in Bermuda or continue to pay contractors' inflated salaries?" says one Senate aide. "Those are the questions we are going to ask."
All the lawmakers involved would rather see more carefully considered budget cuts than are called for in the sequestration law. And all realize the unique and respected nature of the Defense Department's mission; one visit to Arlington National Cemetery proves that.
But budget hawks also know that the Pentagon houses some of the most accomplished bureaucratic infighters in government. And with sequestration nearly here, they know a gold watch when they see one.
Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.
Comment on Byron York's column by clicking here.
02/12/13 Legalization-first could scuttle immigration plan
02/05/13 GOP aims to ease bloodshed in 2016 primary debates
01/29/13 In some GOP circles, reform is already underway
01/22/13 Once a critic of deficits, Obama now goes for broke
01/15/13 Yes, defense spending should be cut --- in the right way
01/08/13 Republicans bet on stronger hand in spending fight
01/03/13 For Obama, the economy never comes first
12/26/12 Anxiety rises as Americans face start of ObamaCare
12/18/12 Get ready for the costs and chaos of Obamacare
12/11/12 Obama ups bid as GOP looks for way out of crisis
12/04/12 Will Republicans support yet another Bush for president?
11/28/12 Hispanics favor Dems, but didn't decide election
11/20/12 Governors take power as balance shifts inside GOP
11/13/12 In 2016, GOP needs candidate voters believe in
11/06/12 Polls don't reflect Romney's momentum in Ohio
10/30/12 Romney, not Obama, shows concern for nation's poor
10/23/12 Entering stretch, Obama campaign running on empty
10/16/12 Will Romney push Libya issue or opt for caution?
10/12/12Romney should expose irs as enforcer of ObamaCare
10/03/12 Obama's problems multiply as GOP frets over Romney
08/25/12 With everything at stake, where's Mitt?
08/21/12 Can Romney fight distractions and stay focused on jobs?
08/14/12 When 1,099 felons vote in a race won by 312 ballots
08/07/12 Heeding critics, Romney finally sharpens pitch for long run
07/31/12 Under second Obama term, a more dependent nation?
07/10/12 Should Rmney apologize for RomneyCare?
07/03/12 Roberts' dodge at heart of ObamaCare decision
06/26/12 For Obama, working for business was working for enemy
06/19/12 Obama suffers amnesia about first year as president
06/12/12 As Romney-Obama fight heats up, Bain will be back
06/05/12 Two books, two standards for Obama, Bush
05/30/12 Obama, Rubio birthers should read the law
05/22/12 Extend Obama's grace period just a wee bit longer?
05/15/12 In new biography, Obama asks: Am I an American?
05/08/12 With serious talks, Gingrich elevated GOP race
05/01/12 Romney braces for 'vast left-wing conspiracy'
04/24/12 Obama faces defeat on pipeline as Dems defect
04/17/12 Time for a cease-fire in phony 'war on women'?
04/10/12 To Obama, legal precedents are all about politics
04/03/12 All of the liberal panic unnecessary --- and all the conservative hope unfounded?
03/27/12 Obama headed for defeat in pipeline fight
03/20/12 Why do island territories play key role in GOP race?
03/14/12The real bias in 'Game Change'
03/06/12 In politics fight, Breitbart knew culture is key
02/27/12 Hollywood makes 'Game Change' into Sarah Palin story
02/22/12 Why did Santorum lose in 2006?
02/14/12 After wins, Santorum targets Romney's native state
02/07/12 Running as businessman may be Romney's curse
02/01/12 What REALLY happened to the Gingrich ethics case?
01/25/12 Romney's unsolvable Massachusetts problem
01/18/12 If Romney wins, count on Obama to dig into Bain
01/10/12 Is New Hampshire fit to pick a president?
01/04/12 How Romney began journey on abortion
12/28/11 Blame Florida for GOP's holiday craziness
12/20/11 Huckabee dismisses draft but remains a force in Iowa
12/13/11 Surging fast, Gingrich looks to take Iowa
12/06/11 Voters like Newt, but wait to see if he's real
11/29/11 Despite surge, peril for Gingrich all around
11/22/11 To bounce back, Perry must mix it up
11/15/11 Newt's wonkish, unconventional campaign
11/08/11 Tim Pawlenty, the man who coulda been a contender
11/07/11 Gingrich big winner at key Iowa event
10/31/11 Perry's right: Republicans drowning in debates
10/25/11 Romney health plan still faces challenge from GOP
10/18/11 Lesson of Perry's candidacy: Think before you run
10/06/11 In veepstakes, candidates deaf to Rubio no
10/04/11 Cain's 9-9-9 plan sounds good, but will it work?
09/27/11 Media bias 101
09/20/11 Obama plagued by Dems' ingratitude
09/13/11 Will immigration cripple Perry's bid?
09/06/11 Left paints the campaign as a religious war
08/30/11 Keep your health plan? Don't count on it
08/24/11 GOP operatives fear lasting Ron Paul problem
08/16/11 Michele Bachmann and the submissive question
08/09/11 Obama partisans ignore facts when bashing Bush
08/02/11 When partisans fling charges of partisanship
07/26/11 Obama could be comeback kid if he heeds Clinton's lessons
07/19/11 Book casts doubt on Obama healthcare story
07/12/11 Controversial budget law begins to pay off
07/04/11 Anti-Mormon bias persists, notably among Dems
06/27/11 Huntsman tries McCain model, but he's no John McCain
06/06/11 Amid media circus, Palin lays out policy positions
05/30/11 GOP condemns Dems' breathtaking refusal to produce budget
05/24/11 Eye-for-an-eye filibuster stops Democratic nominee
05/17/11 Amid RomneyCare fight, voters ask: Where's Mitt?
05/10/11 Bin Laden coup won't help Obama in budget fight
05/09/11 Inside the GOP debate: Pawlenty underwhelms, Cain struggles, Santorum scores
05/02/11 Huckabee decision will shape GOP presidential race
04/27/11 Get ready for game of chicken over debt ceiling
04/25/11 McCain: Libyan rebels seek U.S. recognition, might pay for war costs
04/18/11 Have the U.S. and NATO given up on Libya mess?
04/11/11 Reforming entitlements is key to a strong military
04/05/11 Jihadis Who Killed Americans Get U.S. Support in Libya
04/04/11 Unions deploy money and muscle in Battle of Wisconsin
03/30/11 Labor fight in Wisconsin is far from over
03/28/11 Obama fails to grasp the gravity of going to war
03/21/11 Union equates lavish benefits to black civil rights
03/15/11 GOP should heed lesson of 1991: No guts, no glory
03/14/11 GOP focuses on NPR's subsidies, not its politics
03/08/11 While Obama seeks new ideas, his bureaucrats stifle them
02/28/11 Why the GOP shouldn't fear a government shutdown
02/22/11 In Hawaii, a dispiriting glimpse of one-party rule
02/21/11 Obama team uses slippery words to tout budget
02/15/11 Myth and memory: The battle over Reagan's legacy
02/07/11 Invoking Reagan, Palin says this is a time for choosing again
01/31/11 With each passing year, Reagan grows larger in the American political imagination
01/24/11 House GOP begins long drive to dismantle Obamacare
01/17/11 GOP gears up again to strip NPR of federal funds
01/10/11 To House GOP, illegal immigration is a jobs issue
01/03/11 Obamacare mess is legacy of Dems' moment of power
12/27/10 Smiling Dems will soon cry Washington is broken
12/20/10 Dems are earmark junkies but GOP goes straight
12/13/10 Needed: A more presidential Palin
12/06/10 With Dems in a funk, Obama charts a new course
11/29/10 Obama's poll numbers point to his defeat in 2012
11/22/10 Holder ignored risks of civilian terror trials
11/16/10 Dems love facts and science --- except when they don't
11/08/10 Obama, new GOP lawmakers are on collision course
11/01/10 New GOP star on track to defeat Dem legend Russ Feingold
10/26/10 If Dems lose, Obama will blame everyone but himself
10/19/10 Profligate Congress should read its own bills
10/13/10 Why Big Labor couldn't match Glenn Beck's rally
10/11/10 Trash-talking Democrat faces defeat in Florida
10/05/10 A GOP unknown in striking distance of Barney Frank
09/28/10 Administration inflates green-jobs numbers
09/20/10 In Delaware, GOP should target Dems, not O'Donnell
09/14/10 GOP Insiders Wary of Landslide Predictions
08/31/10 For Obamacare supporters, judgment day approaches
08/23/10 Obama has himself to blame for Muslim problem
08/17/10 Cut spending without cutting services? Start here
08/17/10 For Michelle Obama, extravagance dents popularity
08/09/10 Obama's zealous civil rights enforcer gets busy
08/02/10 A battle between Left and Right --- inside the GOP
07/26/10 GOP spoiling for fight over Berwick appointment
07/20/10 How long will the public tolerate Afghan war?
07/12/10 NASA's Muslim outreach: Al Jazeera told first
07/02/10 Legal complaint against Gore is detailed, credible
06/28/10 Obama and Dems heading for electoral disaster
06/21/10 Who told Obama drilling is absolutely safe?
06/14/10 Billions for green jobs, whatever they are
06/07/10 Sestak a no-go for any job. So what was the deal?
05/31/10 As economic worries worsen, White House puts on the glitz
05/25/10 GOP dilemma: Fight Kagan, or go along?
05/11/10 Enforcing nation's immigration laws would be a bargain
05/03/10 How Obama could lose Arizona immigration battle
04/27/10 What's behind the anti-Tea Party hate narrative?
04/20/10 As government expands, beware the post-office example
04/19/10 Who wins in 2010? Good luck reading tea leaves
04/12/10 GOP Obamacare strategy: Try repeal, then cut
04/05/10 Obamacare was mainly aimed at redistributing wealth
03/30/10 Message to Dems: People still don't like Obamacare
03/23/10 The coming consequences of Obamacare
03/16/10 Marco Rubio and the Republicans who love him
03/15/10 GOP hopes town halls take health care off table
03/08/10 Dems turn risky health vote into manhood contest
03/01/10 Why Obama defies the public on health care
02/22/10 South Carolina mulls 2012: Romney? Palin? Huck?
02/16/10 GOP winning war over Miranda rights for terrorists
02/09/10 Who are the 300 terrorists held in U.S. prisons?
02/02/10 Is Obama dissatisfied with being president?
01/19/10 The Republican dilemma: Good Michael or Bad Michael?
01/12/10 Now the lawmakers are figuring out what they didn't know
01/05/10 GOP deserves blame for Democratic excesses
12/29/09 Dems' dreams of a blue West begin to turn red
12/22/09 Why Dems push health care, even if it kills them
11/30/09 Dems' kamikaze mission: Health care by New Year's
11/23/09 Why it's a mistake to bring Gitmo prisoners here
11/16/09 Dems' slick fix: $210 billion of fiscal restraint
11/10/09 Obama can't be community organizer for the world
11/02/09 At key moment, Obama leaves health post unfilled
10/26/09 Fierce urgency' for jobs, not health care
10/12/09 Facts hurt Jennings in youth sex controversy
10/05/09 Amid terror threat, Dems chip away at Patriot Act
09/27/09 In Afghanistan, let U.S. troops be warriors
09/21/09 Under fire, Democrats abandon ACORN in drove
09/14/09 Dems stifle Republican health care plans
09/08/09 For Dems, a serious Charlie Rangel problem
09/07/09 Obama's speech: Wrong setting for a sales job
09/01/09 What happened to the antiwar movement?
08/24/09 Why Dems may jam through health care plan
08/17/09 GOP thinks the unthinkable: Victory in 2010
08/10/09 The empty words of a journalist turned flack
08/03/09 Probe finds new clues in AmeriCorps IG scandal
07/27/09 Obamacare haunted by unkept promises of stimulus
07/20/09 Why the GOP failed the Sotomayor test
07/13/09 What the GOPers will ask Sotomayor
06/29/09 Serious questions remain for Mark Sanford
06/22/09 How GOPers can crack the AmeriCorps scandal
06/16/09 Worried about Sotomayor? Consider Andre Davis
06/08/09 Can Mitch Daniels save the GOP?
06/01/09 When the Dems derailed a Latino nominee
05/26/09 Why the GOP will defeat Obama on healthcare
05/19/09 Rosy report can't hide stimulus problems
05/12/09 The Reagan legacy is the man himself
05/05/09 Sen. Specter, meet your new friends
04/27/09 Ted Olson: ‘Torture' probes will never end
04/20/09 Who's Laughing at the Axis of Evil today?
04/14/09 Congress needs Google to track stimulus money
04/06/09 Beyond AIG: A bill to let Big Government set your salary
03/30/09 On Spending and the Deficit, McCain Was Right
03/24/09 It's Obama's crisis now
03/17/09: Geithner-Obama economics: A joke that's not funny
© 2009, NEA
Richard Z. Chesnoff
Frank J. Gaffney
Victor Davis Hanson
A. Barton Hinkle
Judge A. Napolitano
Debra J. Saunders
J. D. Crowe
David Ray Skinner
Ask Doctor K