Before heading out on vacation, I wrote this Alternet piece on the consensus among the major players in debt negotiations that the role of non-security discretionary spending in our economy should plummet:

In this year’s State of the Union address, Obama pitched a strategy to “Win the Future” by combining a five-year freeze on annual spending on the one hand and investments in “innovation, education and infrastructure” on the other. Obama bragged he would bring discretionary spending back down to Eisenhower levels, while also warning that “Cutting the deficit by gutting our investments in innovation and education is like lightening an overloaded airplane by removing its engine.” So he would cut bad spending while strengthening smart investments.

But EPI’s analysis shows that public investment – education, infrastructure and research and development – is actually the majority of the NSD budget. In other words, the part of the plane Obama is looking to lighten is largely engine.

Check it out if the debt drama hasn’t already depressed you enough. I’ll be back from vacation at the end of this month.


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