Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Team Obama Purposefully Hurts America (In Order to Hurt G.O.P.)

President Obama's sequester scare strategy has been a political flop, but his government keeps trying. The latest gambit is to force airline flight delays until enough travellers stuck on tarmacs browbeat enough Republicans to raise taxes again.

This week the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) began furloughing each of its air-traffic controllers for one day out of every 10 to achieve roughly $600 million in savings this fiscal year. The White House dubiously claims that the furloughs are required by the sequester spending cuts enacted in 2011.

Capitol Hill Republicans say the White House is free to make other cuts instead. House Transportation and Infrastructure Chairman Bill Shuster suggests the FAA first take a whack at the $500 million it's spending on consultants, or perhaps the $325 million it blows on supplies and travel.

In case there's any doubt about the President's ability to prioritize, at least two GOP Senators, Jerry Moran and Roy Blunt, have written bills to clarify Mr. Obama's authority to make sensible spending decisions. He's not interested, and Senate Democrats have blocked such reforms. Making smart choices about federal sending would spoil the fun of creating flight delays and then blaming Republicans…

On Monday, as flight delays were hitting travelers at airports around the country due to these allegedly unavoidable cuts, the top story on the Department of Transportation's website announced a $474 million grant program that promises to "make communities more livable and sustainable."

How about awarding grants to the control towers at Hartsfield and O'Hare? The community of air travelers would likely agree that sitting in a departure lounge at Newark Airport may be livable, but it's not sustainable...

From the Wall Street Journal editorial, "Flight Delays as Political Strategy."