As I look at the budget reductions/eliminations voted on by the new Republican-controlled House of Representatives, it may be time to emulate the people of Wisconsin and take to the streets to protest these injustices nationwide.
Budgets are, in a real sense, a concrete statement of moral beliefs. If we Catholics champion justice for the poor, care about peace and want to preserve our natural environment, our community of faith needs to scrutinize these budget cuts, and protest loudly!
Now let’s be clear: reducing the deficit is a good idea, although there is serious question among knowledgeable economists about the wisdom of doing it now, before we recover a bit more from the recession.
But ultimately, deficit reduction will be necessary. The question is how? And what do we do? Raise revenue, or cut, or some combination thereof?
First, let’s look at the Republican legislation as outlined by the House Appropriations Committee:
- No reform whatsoever to eliminate the tax cuts for the wealthy (just renewed in the recent lame duck Congress)
- No attempt to go after corporations with tax shelters overseas