Programs To Cut

How about Head Start?

I know that discussing the elimination of a government program is heresy, and that all government programs once initiated become sacrosanct, and the only permissible discussion about them is the budget level, but I just find it amazing that, given our fiscal straits, we aren’t having a serious discussion about a) what should the federal government be doing, b) even if the goals of the program are constitutionally legit, is it doing them in the most cost-effective way possible? We should be talking about eliminating programs entirely, and not just arguing about how much money we should be wasting on them. Planned Parenthood and CPB/NPR are obvious examples, particularly given the results of recent stings, but even those run by people who are well intentioned, and not duplicitous, should on the block as well, if they’re not federal responsibilities, or if they are not effective. When our monthly deficit is larger than any of George Bush’s annual ones, it’s time to get serious.

By the way, this principle would apply to NASA as well. Certainly SLS/Orion are prime candidates for elimination, and the only thing keeping them alive is their constituencies for the pork.

[Update a few minutes later]

The Democrats’ dull budget scissors.

Traffic Jams

the science.

This had me scratching my head, though. It lists the top ten most congested highways (not sure how they measure that), and I found a couple of surprises.

First, that none of them were in southern California. I would have thought that the 405 through West LA and over Sepulveda Pass into the Valley would have been a prime candidate.

Second, that they list the merge between northbound US-23 and northbound I-75, in Detroit. Only one problem. Those two highways merge in Flint, sixty miles northwest of Detroit (and my home town). And while I haven’t spent much time there lately, I have been there some, and I’m quite surprised that it beats all of the Detroit freeways for congestion. The only time I can imagine it would be a big problem is on holiday weekends with people coming from the Detroit area heading up north. Even then, it can be avoided by taking I-475 through town. I’d like to know how it got so designated. It makes me question the validity of the rest of them as well.

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