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Can you balance the budget?

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Doc of the Walk

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I remember doing something like this in government last year. My partner and I basically cut anything that was not a necessity like social security checks. We had like 100 billion in surplus
 

juliedi

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Can I balance the budget?

No, probably not.
 

loveoforganic

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Dissolve the miltary! People love us, we have nothing to fear :D
 

Geekchick921

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George Carlin (may be rest in peace) had a great idea!

(There is plenty of foul language in this video, but if you didn't already expect that from it being George Carlin, you have been seriously deprived).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OmJ2snsLxWw
 

paul411

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It would be nice to have all the Congresspeople and Senators do this exercise and publish it so constituents know exactly where they stand.
 

theli

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I love the idea, but 99% of the budget balancing proposals will never occur since everything that decreases benefits for group x will result in anger from group x and cutting the military means you're soft on terrorism.

No one has or is willing to gamble all their political capital to solve the deficit. It's easy to publish something that has a list of things to cut then have people basically check little boxes according to their political ideology. The actual difficult part is coming up with a combination that can possibly be passed as real legislation.
 

Lokhtar

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I second every politician be required to take something like this. We can at least start with the ones with the most checkboxes.
 

FutureCTDoc

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Very easy index to one half of inflation or freeze growth. Bring the troops home, cut medicare, medicaid and social security.
 

getright

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I would love to see a politician actually mention raising the minimum age for receiving social security benefits...that sure wouldn't end well :laugh:
 

teddy bear doc

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Lol, it's funny that everyone's is so different. I ended up with a huge surplus, but a large majority of that surplus came from tax increases, not spending cuts. I have no problem spending the money for programs; I only have a problem that we are spending money we don't have. Increase income = problem solved. The way I see it, we should suck it up and dig ourselves out of this deep hole. Then, when that is out of the way, we can look at cutting taxes again. Not so very different from the way individuals dig themselves out of consumer debt by increasing their payments.

As a sidenote, it makes me curious what everyone's political preferences are. Don't worry, I won't open that can of worms here, just something to consider.
 
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theli

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As a sidenote, it makes me curious what everyone's political preferences are. Don't worry, I won't open that can of worms here, just something to consider.

Essentially if their selections take us back to the Clinton eras by letting a lot of tax breaks expire, reduce the military, and maintain entitlements, they're probably "liberal".

If their selections wants to maintain the course of the Bush era, they probably want to decrease benefits and drastically reduce the size of the federal government to keep the various tax cuts fiscally viable they're probably "conservative".

It usually comes down to belief in the trickle down theory of Reagonomics and whether you think rich people deserve to keep their money, poor people deserve help or if everyone should just pull themselves up by their bootstraps.
 

FutureCTDoc

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I would love to see a politician actually mention raising the minimum age for receiving social security benefits...that sure wouldn't end well :laugh:

It would be tantamount to political suicide, but Sarkozy did it. Social Security was originally meant to be 1) a safety net 2) that you would die before receiving any. We need to move the retirement age for social security the early or mid 70s. I wish we'd just close it, allow us younger individuals to invest our own money. FWIW politically I'm a libertarian.
 

Lokhtar

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I like mine slightly better:

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2010/11/13/weekinreview/deficits-graphic.html?choices=d2uk52q1


But yeah, fixing the budget is no problem according to this game.

I like mine even more :).

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2010/11/13/weekinreview/deficits-graphic.html?choices=d02k44l7

It would be tantamount to political suicide, but Sarkozy did it. Social Security was originally meant to be 1) a safety net 2) that you would die before receiving any. We need to move the retirement age for social security the early or mid 70s. I wish we'd just close it, allow us younger individuals to invest our own money. FWIW politically I'm a libertarian.
I disagree in because Social Security is such a small part of our budget, it's so easy to keep it working forever, and it provides such a massively important safety net for tens of millions of people. Seriously, I don't see how people think something that is essential to so many people is less important than 1% tax increase for people making over a million dollars. I don't get it.
 

DrYoda

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I like mine even more :).

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2010/11/13/weekinreview/deficits-graphic.html?choices=d02k44l7


I disagree in because Social Security is such a small part of our budget, it's so easy to keep it working forever, and it provides such a massively important safety net for tens of millions of people. Seriously, I don't see how people think something that is essential to so many people is less important than 1% tax increase for people making over a million dollars. I don't get it.

I wouldn't call it small, it's about 20% of the federal budget.
 

Lokhtar

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I wouldn't call it small, it's about 20% of the federal budget.
Haha, sorry. You are right. I misspoke. I meant as a % of our GDP.
 

gravitywave

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http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2010/11/13/weekinreview/deficits-graphic.html?choices=011bn5qd

60%taxes/40%spending. bring the troops home, push back retirement, push taxes on everyone, soak the rich. income inequality is driving most social unrest these days. it's time the winners started paying for their "American Dream," instead of having the Chinese pay for it and the rest of us signing their IOUs.

there's a reason capping Medicare spending saves so much money - it's totally unfeasible. malpractice reform is a red herring best left to the states.

what's incredible about going through this exercise is how far away we are in reality from coming up with an actual solution.
 

teddy bear doc

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60%taxes/40%spending. bring the troops home, push back retirement, push taxes on everyone, soak the rich. income inequality is driving most social unrest these days. it's time the winners started paying for their "American Dream," instead of having the Chinese pay for it and the rest of us signing their IOUs.

LOL, mine was even worse, 65% taxes / 35% spending cuts. Guess everyone probably knows where I fall politically. :laugh:
 
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