It’s a clown party, bro.
Republicans are mocking sequester cuts. Why? Because they’re jerks.
They’re feigning outrage that the sequester cuts have forced the White House to cancel tours, and mocking the president, all the while the sequester cuts are having real effects on real people. Everything ranging from programs to feed the hungry, to school lunches for low-income kids, to Head Start, to tornado relief efforts in Atlanta, Georgia, to border protection in Arizona to domestic violence services in Arkansas are on the chopping block.
People are losing their jobs, or are losing income because of furloughs. In Oklahoma, San Francisco, and St. Petersburg, Florida, airports are closing their air traffic control towers. Oh, and the Detroit airport is closing its control tower, forcing pilots to schedule their own departures and arrivals. Fantastic, right?
And, as Jed Lewison at Daily Kos pointed out today, the Army suspended its tuition assistance program.
The sequester is not funny — not to those affected by it. But Republicans would rather mock the fact that the sequester has hit the White House too, or introduce stupid bills prohibiting the Secret Service from protecting the president if he goes golfing (of all things) until the White House resumes tours, or feign outrage that “the people’s house” is closed than do their damn jobs.
— Reince Priebus (@Reince) March 8, 2013
The people have more important things to worry about than cancelled White House tours, don’t you think?
Insulated from the reality of the sequester, the Beltway media is, of course, focusing on the GOP’s antics while local media are covering the very real ways in which the sequester cuts are sticking it to average Americans.
Here’s a list of local media coverage of sequester cuts, via Sam Stein at HuffPo. It’s a long’un, so you might want to grab a beer before reading (and do read the entire list so you can get a sense of exactly what it is Republicans have wrought on us):
· Recovery efforts following a tornado in Atlanta are being drained of federal help because of sequestration related cuts. [WAGA-TV]
· The Georgia Department of Labor is figuring out how to reduce unemployment benefits by nearly 11 percent starting on March 31. [WSB-TV]
· The Spokane County Meals On Wheels is looking at a45,000 budget cut. “I’m scared,” the program quoted one official with the group saying. “How do we keep serving all the people that need it?” [KREM-TV]
· Cleanup efforts following the Hanford nuclear leak in Washington state are complicated by $171 million in sequester-related budget cuts. “The largest part of those cuts would be in underground tank management,” reported KCPQ in Seattle. “New leaks were just discovered in six of those tanks.” [KCPQ-TV, KPTV-TV]
· Border protection agencies in Arizona and elsewhere plan to furlough employees for up to 14 days, with notices already sent out to 24,000 people nationwide. [KPNX-TV]
· Sequestration will likely increase homelessness across Arizona. “In Maricopa county there is a waiting list for rental assistance with 3,700 names on it,” reported KPNX. “That list is now closed and it could be a long time before anyone can get on it. [KPNX-TV]
· Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado is cutting623,000 from its budget because of sequestration, resulting in fewer employees, slower emergency response, and continued closure of the glacier basin campground. [KTVD-TV]
· Bell Helicopters in Fort Worth has started offering incentive programs to workers to encourage them to retire early so that they can save money to deal with sequestration. [KDAF-TV]
· Twenty-three Tooele County employees around Salt Lake City, Utah, were already laid off because of sequestration. “I thought it was a secure job, but apparently not,” said one laid-off employee. [KTSU-TV]
· The San Diego Housing Commission is staring at $7.5 million in cuts. [KSWB-TV]
· Little Rock, Ark., faces potential losses in funding for domestic violence prevention services. [KARK-TV]
· Mississippi food pantries are likely to take a hit with officials expecting “to see more people in line.” [WAPT-TV]
· Advocates in Kansas City, Mo., are going to Washington, D.C., to try and prevent expended cuts to scientific research into disease control and prevention. [KCTV-TV]
· Advocates in Nevada are pleading with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to try and protect food banks that the state’s children depend on. [KTVN-TV]
· KABB in San Antonio reported that $140 million of the $150 million in federal grants that the city received could be endangered by sequestration, “affecting programs like Head Start, transportation programs for seniors and WIC (nutritional programs for women, infants and children).” [KABB-TV]
· Housing officials in Austin, Texas are bracing for the forthcoming penny pinch. “Austin currently serves about 18,000 Austinites and has close to 10,000 residents on the waitlist for public housing and rental assistance,” the report went, “so, every dollar from the government counts.” [KTBC-TV]
· Detroit’s airport is closing its control tower, forcing “pilots to coordinate their own arrivals and departures.” [WXYZ-TV]
· Four local airport towers are closing in San Francisco. [KGO-TV]
· Albert Whitted Airport in St. Petersburg, Fla., is closing its tower. [WFTS-TV]
· Six air traffic control towers are closing in Oklahoma. [KJRH-TV]
· One official near a military base in St. Louis estimates that there could be a $28 million economic impact in the region. [KSDK-TV]
· Approximately 8,500 civilian defense employees at Fort Bragg are facing furloughs, and “officials and business owners say that could have a trickle down effect on the local economy” and that “the sequester will also impact schools at Fort Bragg and its five thousand students.” [WRAL-TV]
So while John Boehner and the assclowns at Fox News laugh at the White House locking its doors, remember that they are mocking the real effect that their political dipshittery has had on this country.