Rich Galen

The discussion should be this: Can we find a way to spend the money we are already spending in more productive ways? And how what can we do to raise the largest possible number of Americans who are at or below the poverty line into the middle class?

My personal opinion is that spreading more money around without any focus is a bad idea.

The Federal budget for fiscal year 2013 is in the area of $3.8 trillion dollars.

A trillion dollars is most accurately defined as: THIS MUCH, which is to say it has no meaning. Three times that much has no more meaning.

You have to believe that within that $3.8 trillion there might be some items that may have been a good idea once, but now don't make any sense.

Keeping about 80,000 U.S. troops in Europe comes to mind, but there are thousands of programs that have outlived their usefulness and should be scrapped.

The problem with the current sequester program is that it was specifically designed to make high-profile cuts to the budget so that the Congress would make long-term savings.

The Congress did not, so the sequester took effect cutting something on the order of $85.4 billion. That, by the way, works out to about 2.2 percent of federal spending.

The President has decried the sequester even though he proposed it and signed it into law. Congress has decried the sequester even though it is in place because the House and Senate didn't do their jobs.

We have to stop blindly defending our position and start looking for solutions -- some of which may lie in the other guy's beliefs.

Rich Galen

Rich Galen has been a press secretary to Dan Quayle and Newt Gingrich. Rich Galen currently works as a journalist and writes at