by: Brent Smith
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Let’s say you own a house. With the house comes a yard and with that comes a lot of various things for the upkeep of the property. Things like a lawn mower, hedge clippers, paint supplies, gas cans, etc.
The problem is you have no where to store them. Consequently they get damaged by weather and people sneak into your yard and steal your stuff – because you don’t a fence.
So you propose to your wife, or whomever resides with you (who knows anymore), to shell out the money to build a lockable shed in the back yard.
Well, your other half isn’t keen on spending the money. You explain that the family can cut it by moving some money around and cutting back.
Instead of listening reasonably to your proposal, your other half, he, she or it, goes on a tirade, exclaiming that taking from one portion of the household budget will hurt the well-being of the family.
Normally, you would cave and tacitly agree, but not this time. This time you sit he, she or it down and explain that this budget shifting and tightening is but a temporary discomfort. The shed is a one and done expense. Once it’s built, it will require little if any maintenance. After it’s constructed, the other portions of the budget will continue getting funding as normal.
Now does any of this sound familiar? If you said it sounds a lot like Trump’s border wall/fence, you win the gold star – which I’ll send you psychically.
There – I just did. Congratulations! (h/t: Pat Gray)
Every year, each federal agency and department gets their allotment of cash to spend/waste. Thanks to the magic of base-line budgeting, they’ll get more than they did last year, regardless of what any politician says.
And none of us are sure what all these government agencies really do – how they spend all those billions, so we joke about shovel-ready jobs and “good enough for government work.”
Speaking of shovel-ready – there’s an old joke, where a guy is driving down a road. He approaches a man digging holes off to the side. So he stops and gets out of car. He walks toward the guy digging, when he notices dozens of holes behind him.
He walks up to the guy. The ditch-digger is wearing a Department of Transportation vest. The man stops and asks: “Hey buddy. I’m just curious as to why you’re digging all the holes on the side of the road?
The government worker peers at the man with a very confused look, as if it should be obvious to anyone what he’s doing.
The government worker smurks at the guy and explains matter-of-factly: “The guy that fills in the holes took the day off.”
This is what we envision when we think of government work. Work-a-day tasks that we blindly and continually fund year after year – forever.
But it’s different when building structures, like say a border barrier, even for the government. Unlike having to fund hundreds of worthless government departments for all eternity, a border barrier only has to be funded once. And once it’s completed, all the various departments that temporarily forfeited a miniscule amount of their budgets, will again be fully funded – and beyond.
In other words, don’t buy any of this clap-trap that there will be suffering, or the Defense Department can’t afford a temporary lapse of a tiny fraction of their budget. Remember, the DOD is still a government entity, so trust me when I say they waste and lose a lot more money every year than is being “diverted” to build the border barrier.
The people whining about how diverting $3.6 billion out of a $4.5 trillion budget will somehow be damaging to health or safety or security are doing so for purely political reasons. Anyone who complains about this one-time expenditure is just dead-set against building the border barrier in the first place.
Anyway, it gives new meaning to the Department of De-Fence! Get it?