What Would Jesus Cut?

The painful combination of high unemployment, falling incomes, and rising deficits has put the nation in a crisis situation.

The painful combination of high unemployment, falling incomes, and rising deficits has put the nation in a crisis situation. Tough choices are now upon us -- but they must be smart, courageous, and compassionate. Unfortunately, the choices being made by those in power seem more political and ideological than responsible.

In its budget proposals this spring, the House is not cutting spending where the real money is, such as in military spending, corporate tax cuts and loopholes, and long-term health-care costs. Instead, it is cutting programs for the poorest people at home and around the world while defending the largesse handed out to big corporations and military contractors. This is not genuine fiscal conservatism; it's just political.

These budget-cutters' priorities are to protect the richest Americans and abandon the poorest. The proposed House cuts are full of disproportionate cuts to initiatives that have proven to save children's lives and overcome poverty, while leaving untouched the most corrupt and wasteful spending of all American tax dollars -- the Pentagon entitlement program. This is not fiscal integrity; this is hypocrisy.

U.S. military spending is now about half of the world's military expenditures and is more than the military budgets of the next 15 countries combined. To claim that all that money is necessary for genuine American security is no longer credible. To say it is all more important than bed nets that prevent malaria, vaccines that prevent deadly diseases, or child health and family nutrition for low-income families is simply immoral.

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