Wednesday, January 27, 2010


Clearly, in a time of high deficits and a desire to at least modestly reduce it, difficult decisions have to be made by the White House and Congress as to what programs and/or entitlements have to be ditched or significantly reduced.

As is often the case, I'm frustrated with their priorities. In a time when unemployment is high, the focus should not only only be on creating jobs for people without a college education to fix and build infrastructure or saving government jobs. In order to keep our country competitive in the world and get high school students to pursue math and science majors, there has to also be lucrative and stimulating jobs for them when they graduate, i.e., the type of jobs that allow for research that advances our quality of life, health, and competitiveness in the world. These jobs are often supported by government grants and funds. I was reading an article today that Obama plans to reduce spending for NASA.
But Obama's budget freeze is likely to hamstring NASA in coming years as the spending clampdown will eventually shackle the agency and its ambitions. And this year's funding request to develop both commercial rockets and a new NASA spaceship will be less than what was recommended by a White House panel of experts last year.
There are tough choices to be made, but grants for big research are as important as jobs for infrastructure and so forth, because much research will not be done without the funds that only the federal government can provide. If those dollars aren't there, many high paying, and highly skilled jobs will be lost along with the innovation and progress in medicine, space exploration, and other areas of research and discovery gained by such jobs (and don't forget that it's those high paying jobs that are paying the taxes in the first place). There will be more thoughts on what I think can and cannot be cut from our bloated federal budget in other posts.

No comments:

Post a Comment