Here is Senator Bernie Sanders pointing out the hypocrisy of those who never said a word about the deficit when Congress voted for $3 trillion worth of spending for an unpaid war in Iraq; or when Congress extended tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans; or when Congress voted for prescription drug benefits that will generate many billions in profits for pharmaceutical companies; or when Congress voted to bail out the financial system. (He acknowledges that the last one didn't end up costing taxpayers much, but there was always a risk that it could have.) Now all of a sudden Congress has developed deficit fever when that means taking benefits away from the poor and the sick.
And click on this link to read Paul Krugman's latest column where he spreads some more truth about the "fraudulent" deficit debate, namely that all of the cuts in discretionary spending that are being discussed right now will do almost nothing to rein in the deficit. The only credible way to deal with the deficit, Krugman points out, is to take serious steps to control health care costs, and also to pay some attention to increasing revenue. Krugman gives credit to President Obama for doing "more to rein in long-run deficits than any previous president. And if his opponents were serious about those deficits, they’d be backing his actions and calling for more; instead, they’ve been screaming about death panels."
The only reason politicians can get away with talking so much about reducing discretionary spending, which will not do much at all to reduce the deficit, is that they are able to take advantage of the public's lack of knowledge of the components of the federal budget. We need more truth-tellers like Sanders and Krugman to force Congress to come to grips with reality.