The president's bipartisan commission on reducing the debt are locking horns on procedure. Bush tax cuts and changes to such things as Medicare, Social Security and foreign aid are all topics under consideration for savings. “You Fix the Budget,” claims the New York Times to its readers, which is quite novel. “You Fix the Budget,” states the Times - because Washington will be at it for years to come.
It's being said that 'You Fix the Budget' in this 'Age of Austerity' still
Cutting the deficit will require tough decisions; participating in the Times' “You Fix the Budget” puzzle is understandably devoid of grief or other unpleasant after-effects. Politicians with a clear view of the federal debt know that the government must enter an “Age of Austerity,” as some call it. Readers can make the tough decisions without pressure from lobbyists or fear of alienating a constituency. Is it feasible for the politicians and New York Times readers to meet the same austerity?
Debt in 2015 $400 billion too much
Economists anticipate a federal debt in 2015 that can be $400 billion more than could be reasonably sustained. It makes sense that the small deficits will continue forever since the shortfall from the previous year’s Budget is paid by one year’s economic growth.We're far too past that level. This is shown in just the envisioned $400 billion. Experts say that can be more than 2 percent of the nation's output for 2015 - that's half the Pentagon's annual Budget plus greater than half of the Budget for Medicare. On the bright side, writes the Times, $400 billion is nevertheless much smaller in context than the deficits with which Greece and Ireland are currently struggling. The United States federal deficit from 1990 to 1994 was larger than that. It is not that bad.
Politically unlikely for debt to reduce
The decisions New York Times readers make regarding taxes versus spending - how much taxes ought to rise, and just how much spending should be cut, for example - will “probably be something that isn't politically feasible now,” suggests William Gale of the nonprofit public policy organization the Brookings Institution. Voters have tended to favor politicians who speak generally about reducing the deficit, instead of those politicians with specific plans of action.