JUPITER!….Over at Obsidian Wings, Hilzoy is channeling the Medium Lobster:

When NASA announced Monday that it would be spending $100 billion to send people to the moon, I said: huh? Now? I have since concluded that it was announced so that it could be cut, with great fanfare. But if we’re going to go in for gimmicks, why stop there? Why not announce that we’re going to spend $500 trillion to send people to Jupiter, and then announce that we’re going to realize huge savings by cutting that?

She’s got more on the subject, but I suspect that Onion-esque passage tells more truth about the current fervor for budget cutting than any dozen white papers.

UPDATE: Actually, what all the recent budget cutting talk reminds me of is this old Onion headline: “Report: 98 Percent Of U.S. Commuters Favor Public Transportation For Others.” It’s mostly urban residents who favor cutting farm subsidies, the young who favor cutting Medicare, and the rich who favor cutting the social safety net. Remarkably few people seem to favor cutting government programs that actually affect them.