Sequestration – a fancy term for a “meat-axe” approach to budget cuts — is not a smart solution to reduce our nation’s debt. Sequestration may be a victory for the tea party, but it isn’t a victory for the men and women of our military and their families.

In 2011 Congress could not agree on a budget deficit plan, so instead they passed a law saying if they couldn’t compromise, about $1 trillion in automatic, across the board cuts would take effect. Known as sequestration, Congress essentially “kicked the can down the road.”

At the time, sequestration was thought to be so preposterous Congress was effectively forcing themselves to fix the problem before it “kicked in.” They never did, and the furloughed workers on the Rock Island Arsenal are a small sample of the idiocy.

What many don’t realize is the process begins again in October. Military leaders are hog-tied, as they are unable to manipulate their own budgets to make up for the lost payroll dollars. As the Quad-City Times stated, no business could survive such a mindless approach to budget control.

Unfortunately, this Congress is unlikely to compromise. The hard-working men and women of the Rock Island Arsenal are being used as pawns in an ugly match, which will only damage our military readiness and restrict our ability to respond when the next crisis erupts.

In the long run the sequestration will hurt taxpayers because maintaining our military readiness today is far less expensive than rebuilding our military readiness tomorrow.

Scott Curtis