Warning: American politics (pretty much "R, disturbing, sillyfic, dark, character death, AU, etc")Spoiler Warning.A threat is now building in the House of Representatives: some lawmakers are pushing legislation that would force all federal programs--from Head Start to Even Start; from EPA to OSHA; and from urban development to rural healthcare--to defend themselves before an unelected commission.
This one "sunset commission" would make recommendations to kill, consolidate, or "realign" all programs (with rare exception), and would have the power to force its recommendations through Congress, limiting your representatives' ability to save important programs from the chopping block.
People who rely on these services and the nonprofit organizations that provide them could be left completely in the dark, with no way of knowing whether their programs are on the chopping block and no way to save them.Link to OMB Watch page
Caveat: I'm an old-style liberal; I like balanced budgets, international trade, and relatively little government intervention. But with discretionary non-military expenses being the small part of the US budget that they are (and, by and large, really necessary - you can't tell me women's shelters and educational aid to the poor aren't government duties), this proposed measure is not about fiscal responsibility, but about looking
fiscally reponsible, preserving the pork barrels, and going on with the "only billonaires deserve government protection" neo-social-darwinian program of the crazy wing of the Republican party.