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WDEL Blog: Allan Loudell

What many Washington movers & shakers can agree on --- But they'd almost never say it in public

POLITICO has an extensive piece of what the leading politicians would agree to -- if only they thought they could sell it to their constituents.

Bluntly, the prescription is anathema to core constituencies -- right & left.

Exhibit 'A' is the continuing stalemate over taxes & entitlements with the United States just three weeks away from the "fiscal cliff".



http://www.politico.com/story/2012/12/crafting-a-boom-economy-84878.html?hp=t1

Posted at 7:35am on December 11, 2012 by Allan Loudell

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Comments on this post:

teatime
Tue, Dec 11, 2012 7:48am

I read this article and, predictably, the one obvious item that was left out of the discussion was defense spending.

Defense dollars make up the vast majority of the budget, and cutting even a small part of defense would help erase the deficit without having to put your 95 year old grandma on the sidewalk when she's sick.

By the way, "defense" is a misnomer. Our military is not to "defend" our country, but rather to invade and occupy other countries for no reason.

Allan Loudell
Tue, Dec 11, 2012 8:37am
teatime,

Actually, the issue of military spending DOES come up in this article. Look to Page 2, Paragraph 7:

"Officials largely agree Congress should cut domestic spending, including a nice chunk of defense, because the budget is bloated and outdated, and often designed to placate specific lawmakers or defense contractors..."

But I would agree: This analysis doesn't devote a lot of space to defense expenditures.

By the way, while defense/security represents a substantial chunk of the Federal budget - and our defense spending dwarfs that of other countries - typically about 20% of the Federal budget is classified as defense/international security, NOT over half, as some people believe.

Of course, many others would disagree with your characterization of what represents "defending" the country. For example, Special Ops' strikes on suspected al-Qaeda or other Islamists in sub-Saharan Africa. Of course, the reverse argument can be made that such strikes are often counter-productive, just breeding another generation of Islamists.

Allan Loudell

kavips
Tue, Dec 11, 2012 9:10am
The biggest inflator now that the wars are winding down, is entitlements....

If one just sits in traffic, and thinks of paying retirement to everyone he sees, and then subsidizing that person's medical care, then take that scene, multiply it by every road in Wilmington, then every city in the U.S., he might begin to approach the immenseness of the problem....

This may help one understand the problem...

http://www.heritage.org/federalbudget/budget-entitlement-programs

Removing any squares equals the same reduction. The chart shows that some of the squares that are popularly a target of potential cuts, would make little difference to the overall picture... Defense is one.

Social Security and Medicare and Welfare are the prime factors. Welfare goes down simply with a better economy...

teatime
Tue, Dec 11, 2012 10:21am
My definition of "defense" does not include invading and occupying Iraq just because you felt like it. Bush went on national television and said Iraq is developing a nuclear weapon and will use it, tomorrow, unless we invade first.

Of course, we followed like blind sheep, the media never asking any questions, and occupied their country for seven years---WITHOUT finding any weapons of mass destruction.

Billions of dollars were spent, thousands of lives destroyed, hundreds of young men and women came back to Dover Air Force Base in a box...for no reason.

Interesting how Bush, Rumsfeld, Rice and the other Bush henchmen were able to escape a war crimes tribunal.

EarlGrey
Tue, Dec 11, 2012 11:05am
Heritage does have a lot of good information!

Here is a fun game to play at home with the kids (after all they will be paying it)...you too can "fix" the budget:

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2010/11/13/weekinreview/deficits-graphic.html

kavips
Tue, Dec 11, 2012 11:54pm
Earl Grey.

That was an awesome exercise.. Of course I solved it in no time at all.. with a 53% tax-increase and a 47% cut...

It would be painless and no one would feel any pain at all....


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