The Bush Budget

Unlike me, Judd Gregg is a U.S. Senator from the Republican Party, so you can expect him to be relatively sympathetic to George W. Bush's budget request for Fiscal Year 2009, dubbed "Managing for Results". Instead, he says:

"There's a lot of games, smoke, mirrors, incomplete numbers, basically there's not much realism'" in the budget, Senator Judd Gregg, the top Republican on the Budget Committee, said in an interview. "They're playing the usual games."

In Bush's defense, however, it should be said that all he's doing is actually proposing what conservatives are constantly saying should be done -- big increases in "regular" military spending combined with large expenditures on the war in Iraq combined with low taxes all made possible through the magic of reduced spending. So what did Bush come up with? Well, a proposal to have more Americans get sick and die:

The proposal [. . .] would cut discretionary spending by the Department of Health and Human Services by more than 2 percent in part by freezing the budget of the National Institutes of Health, which heads the government's medical research efforts.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, meanwhile, would take a 6.2 percent reduction. The Health Resources and Services Administration, which helps the poor receive medical care, would be cut by 15.8 percent.

Depriving the population of health care and health care resources in order to make room in the budget for an indefinite military commitment to Iraq and the extension of tax cuts for rich people doesn't seem like a good idea to me, but apparently this is Bush's strategy for long-run economic growth.