Saturday, August 04, 2012

Sequestration Cage Match: WSJ Puts a Beat-Down on DoD Buzz

Contrast the following:

1. Phil Ewing’s take on the state of the ‘Defense Sequestration’fiasco at DoD Buzz….
Wednesday’s now-infamous hearing of the House Armed Services Committee, which broke from its standard script of “where’s mine” to an unusually rancorous airing of partisan talking points, showed the depth of frustration in the defense world. A few years ago, defense was a prince of Washington interest groups. With two hot wars underway and a unanimous “support our troops” mentality in the country, the Pentagon, its allies and dependents got whatever they wanted, times two, yesterday. Now that same cohort has become just another victim in today’s politics of hostage-taking.
When Barack Obama has lost even liberal Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown, the White House has a problem. In Washington, that problem is known as the "sequester." In the rest of the country, it's becoming known as a jobs disaster.

Jobs, and his own re-election, were on Mr. Brown's tortured mind this week, when he publicly called on the president to do something about Defense Department cuts that threaten to shutter his state's Mansfield Lahm Air National Guard Base—and with it, 1,000 jobs. The cuts might be "penny wise," griped the senator, but they were "pound foolish."
And (my favorite part)...
The White House is clearly starting to worry. In a sign of panic, the Obama administration this week moved to hide the coming job losses. The Labor Department directed defense contractors to ignore the law and skip layoff notices, since sequester remains "uncertain." (Companies may well send them out anyway, since Labor can't protect them from lawsuits for failing to give due warning.)

And the president knows his ranks are getting twitchy. Congressional Democrats cracked this week, signing on to Republican legislation that gives the White House 30 days to detail the sequester cuts; they aren't willing to risk looking like White House pawns for secrecy. Republicans are ratcheting up the pressure, with ads targeting vulnerable Democrats in defense-heavy districts, town halls to highlight the sequester threat, and governors calling on Mr. Obama to step up and lead.

Democrats heading home for the August recess will hear an earful from their local defense contractors. And the party is getting equally worried about the other half of the sequester, which will strip hundreds of billions out of their own cherished domestic programs. If this environment gets hot enough, Mr. Obama could find himself alone on the stand-firm-on-sequester ship.
Read both pieces and form your own opinion.

Any bets as to whether more politicians read the WSJ, and more of their constituents read Instapundit than DoD Buzz?

Pssst: Don’t tell Phil: I’d say it would bum him out, except I think he knows he’s whistling past the graveyard when it comes to how this is going to play out in the end.

My ‘take’ stands. The Evil Party suckered the Stupid Party (again). This time, the Stupid Party believed (surely!) NO ONE would be Evil enough to jeopardize National Defense, even if they deign to play games with it. But the Evil Party was too clever by half (as they are really the Evil Hybris-ridden Party).

Banish the Evil Party entirely and fire the Stupid Party Leaders (which would make it the ‘Smart Party’ overnight).

Hat tip for the WSJ Story: Instapundit

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