Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Time To Make A Choice

There is one thing that "almost" everyone I talk to can agree upon. Whether republican or democrat it seems we have all come to the conclusion that we can't continue to run budget deficits forever.

If you read this and the first thing you want to do is begin blaming one party or the other, don't bother. WE are all to blame.

We can not continue the path we are on. We must either decide to make very deep cuts to social service programs, or raise taxes significantly on EVERYONE. Not just the very rich. Just taxing the rich more wouldn't be enough.

Every dollar taken in in taxes in a year is consumed to pay for Medicaid, Medicare and Social Security alone. That leaves every other program and service including DOT, DOD, Treasury, and countless other programs to be funded by loans.

With recent reports of 45 percent of households having at least one member receiving aid from government and nearly half of all people paying zero dollars in taxes, I'm afraid there is no cutting of the programs. At least not without riots in the streets.

All this leaves us in a position where taxes will need to go up dramatically in order to pay our every expanding debts. This could include a VAT tax on top of income taxes, high taxes on corporations (which would likely be very detrimental to business), higher personal income taxes across the board or maybe even all of the above.

How would you solve the problem. Cut programs, raise taxes or a combination of the two.

Just a hint for those of you who would blame Iraq/Afghanistan war operations for the deficit, fine, but realize that ALL the money spent on all the war operations in the last 9 years is still 300 billion less than the budget deficit this year alone. So, you can say we need to stop the wars, and that would be a good start. However, one year's worth of war costs is less than 9 percent of the deficit. We've got a long way to go. It's time to make a choice.

1 comment:

Mookie said...

Well, clearly we are in a position that cutting spending only or raising taxes only just won't be feasible.

We're going to have to take a good look at all the programs we fund, and see what can be trimmed down. we have to see where tax money can be raised without becoming too detrimental to the players in the game.

In some cases we may be able to offer tax credits to businesses that relocate to the U.S., or to certain U.S. companies to bring some of their operations back home from other countries. For all this talk of green movements, we still take in products from polluting businesses that have moved overseas. Which didn't solve any problems, but merely put them elsewhere.

One spending area that specifically needs to be looked at for cuts are within the government agencies. We have a lot of decently-to-well paid public employees working in redundant departments basically overseeing each other. To me this is a huge waste of our tax dollars, to listen to each department justify its existence and passing the buck on any problems back and forth between each other. And in order to detemine who gets the ax and where does not require a new bureaucracy funded by tax dollars to hem and haw on these decisions. Let the lawmakers peel through the pages and pages of agencies and see which ones are doubled up, and make cuts accordingly.