More is being written than most of us can fully absorb, but Politico offers a key observation:
On close reading, the budget is less a credible attempt to eliminate, or even pay down, the U.S. debt and more an ideological policy agenda disguised as a program of fiscal responsibility.
If the proposal is, as such plans are often described, a place to begin discussion or a starting point for negotiation, the message from this one is clear: we will discuss and negotiate around the hungry, the sick, public education, the arts, research, and the environment. As negotiations proceed, anything that stops short of the proposed drastic cuts will appear to be a hard-won improvement even if programs and agencies are still left dramatically underfunded.
The agenda, then, would be that the most vulnerable among us suffer disproportionately while some version of a corporate tax rate cut and wall between the U.S. and Mexico survive. Compounding that is the notion that pitting “deserving taxpayers” again the “undeserving” is somehow good for the country.
We are called as faithful people to care for one another, to act with compassion, and to love others as we love ourselves. This proposal is the antithesis of that. It is preying on those who have the least to further an agenda that might not even be based in economic reality.
It is a threat to the social safety net upon which many of our sisters and brothers rely, to the creation we’ve been given, and to organizations and institutions that provide for a more just and equitable society. No conversation or negotiation should start from such a damaged and damaging place.