Does anyone else see the paucity of political vision and will in such overly simplisitic recommendations? The B&G Report does:
Across-the-board cuts — or even across the board hiring freezes — feel like some of the silliest means of saving cash in hard times. Their use is an outright denial of the notion that government should know how efficiently different agencies function or even that government is responsible for setting priorities. Consider this: A study by the Institute for Wisconsin's Future estimated that hiring 155 new tax-collection agents or auditors would pull in some $175 million in new revenues over the next two years. Over the course of time, the state has failed to replace tax agents and auditors, which leaves it with this much low-hanging fruit [Katherine Barrett and Richard Greene, The B&G Report, 2009.02.05].
Calling for across-the-board cuts dodges a hard analysis of what works in government and what doesn't. Sometimes spending money (funding Birth to 3 Connections, supporting graduate research) saves or makes more money. It takes political vision to recognize the difference and will to argue for cuts in one program but increases in another.