Bush Budget Bust

The day after President George W. Bush proposed the budget for the 2007 fiscal year, both Republicans and Democrats had criticisms and complaints. Some feel that the president is being cautious in his program cut-backs while others believe he has cut too deep.

Dealing with a $2.77 trillion budget is no simple task. With the cost of the war on terrorism, homeland security rising, and the skyrocketing costs of Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security, there is a real need for rearranging America’s finances.

Of course, with a predominantly Republican congress and executive branch, one should expect cut backs in domestic programs. Out of the 141 government programs Bush is seeking to sharply reduce or eliminate entirely, almost one-third of the targeted programs are in education. This includes money to support the arts, vocational education, parent resource centers and drug-free schools. Bush has faced much opposition to his budget proposal. According to USA Today, Democratic spokeswoman Kirstin Brost said, “Every year they propose the same drastic cuts. They’ve cut programs that help average Americans to the bone to pay for super sized tax cuts for millionaires.”

As college students, we should be concerned about these program cuts. One in particular deals with cuts to student loan subsidies. Right now, man, of us have been filling out the dreaded FAFSA applications that give us funds to attend this expensive university. Every year we have to fill the FAFSA applications out immediately because the longer you wait, the fewer funds you will receive from the government.

Bush also proposed reducing the working budgets of nine out of 15 cabinet departments including Agriculture, Education, Interior, and Health and Human Services. This is going to affect American farmers, teachers, and all senior citizens. Agriculturally, farmers are diminishing because of the businesses of mass production. In New Jersey, ironically known as The Garden State, farms have decreased dramatically because of such government cuts. Teachers in New York City and other urban communities have limited tools, namely capital, to fight the terrible conditions of school resources. Even with all the publicity of the “No Child Left Behind Act,” statistics show that children are being neglected. Bush’s administration should reassess the program cuts in the Department of Education because without education, our country is not going to thrive.

With national globalization comes post-industrialism, where labor jobs are scarce and degrees are many. Our country needs to be educated to face this new competition if we want to remain a superpower. With Bush cutting education and other domestic programs, we have less of a chance. Moderate Republicans and Democrats should put Bush’s budget proposal under fire because it is not beneficial to working American citizens in the long run.