Austerity? Austerity involves tax increases and big time spending cuts. I saw some taxes increased but I didn’t see much in the way of spending cut. What tiny bit was cut in sequestration was reinstated thanks in large part to the Republicans who couldn’t bear to see money to the military contractors reduced.
Now our period of “austerity” is over. Well whoopee! Lets spend even more money we don’t have because Obama has to placate his base.
What we need to do is cut government on a large scale not continue in our profligate ways.
Government workers need to be laid off. Compensate them for a period of time (because they will howl) but reduce the Federal workforce by 20% over the next 2 years and then keep going.
Corporate welfare needs to be cut out like a cancer. No business should be siphoning money from the taxpayer.
Reduce “defense” spending by 20% over the next 2 years. Close bases if we need to and then prioritize areas where we need to keep troops. The gravy train needs to end.
Repeal Obamacare (and all its corporate welfare goodies for industry too). Once repealed introduce the free market back into medicine for the first time in 60 years.
Figure out how to privatize Social Security 20% over the next 2 years and then more after that. Consider the Chilean solution. Innovate an answer.
These are just a few ideas.
Of course none of my suggestions would be seriously considered in Washington. They are too “radical.”
I’d use the word “prudent” or perhaps “responsible.” Funny, it could be argued that “responsibility” is actually a radical concept these days.
Sometimes (often) the responsible thing hurts, but we know it must be done. Everyone knows we have to get our house in order, but no one wants to be the one who starts the difficult work of getting government down to a more manageable size. It doesn’t feel good. And right now, at this moment, the sky isn’t falling so what’s the problem? Don’t harsh my government spending buzz, Nick.
Remember, the only reason the Democrats and the Republicans continue to spend money like they have is because the cost of US debt is near 0%. When interest rates rise, and they will rise whether the Fed wants them to or not sooner or later, all that debt is going to get darn expensive. It will have to be paid somehow. Then we’ll have to cut all the services I propose above anyway and we will still have high rates of taxation.
Then we’ll come to know what “austerity” really is.