federal budget Archive

Taking the Long View

By James Schaefer. In America nearly everyone has the opportunity to acquire substantial retirement savings; it's simply a matter of applying self discipline (and some common sense) consistently over a very long period of time.  Starting at age 22, saving a million dollars -- or more -- in retirement accounts is fairly...
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Americans For A Balanced Budget Amendment

Alan Parks is the founder of Americans For A Balanced Budget Amendment (http://www.balanceourbudget.com/), which collects signatures and builds support for the constitutional amendment that came within one vote of passing the Congress back in the mid 1990s.  It can be done. Alan tells us that he commissioned a survey, with dollars from his own pocket,...
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Great Government and the Roots of Rebellion

By John Lumbard.   USA Today just published an opinion piece arguing that voters are concerned about the power wielded by large corporations;  but unwilling to embrace the federal government as a benevolent regulator.  That distrust is founded in a recognition that our government is larger than all of our 100 largest corporations put together---a fearsome size---and that it has...
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Sustainable Government

By James Schaefer.   In a recent Opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal (Tax Aversion Syndrome and Our Deficit Future), Peter G. Peterson writes about Congressional Budget Office projections that show the public debt rising from its current 60% of GDP to 233% in 30 years, and 500% in 50...
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Democrats Favoring a Balanced-Budget Amendment

By John Lumbard.    In March of this year, 41 House Democrats sponsored House Joint Resolution 78, Proposing a balanced budget amendment to the Consititution of the United States.  Sponsor Rep. Bobby Bright (D, AL).  Co-sponsors Jason Altmire (D, Pennsylvania-4), John Barrow (D, GA-12), Robert Berry (D, AR-1), Sanford Bishop (D, GA-2), Dan Boren...
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Facts, Fiction, and Fiscal Responsibility

Today the Boston Globe published an opinion piece which argued that readers are rarely willing to alter their opinions when they are presented with contrary facts.  We offered a comment suggesting that this is very much true of the Medicare debate---not one American in a thousand knows how large the future...
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Candidates Calling for a Balanced-Budget Amendment

Governor Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota:  http://www.timpawlenty.com/balancedbudget.  If you sign the petition you WILL be given an opportunity to decline fund-raising e-mails . . . . There is also an opportunity to put up a comment.  Our contribution: "Greater freedom for the American people will only become possible if we restrict Congress's freedom to intervene...
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Minus-three for Five

We noted with interest the President's recent directive to federal agencies to reduce the bottom 5% of their discretionary operating budgets for the current fiscal year (Obama, June 9, 2010).  Given that budget cutting in Washington usually means continuing to expand, but at a slower pace, this constitutes real progress. Of...
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Starve the Beast (of my choice, please)

by Michael Smith Last week, Robert J. Samuelson of the Washington Post penned a meaty column about the country’s fiscal outlook and the choices we face about the size and scope of government. It’s no surprise that a moderate conservative like Samuelson would tackle these issues, but until recently, a left-leaning...
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Friedman follow-up

by Michael Smith. Tom Friedman’s column from last week ruffled some feathers, evidently. Paul Krugman has come out to denounce warnings about Greece’s debt as fodder for “people who opposed health care reform and are itching for an excuse to dismantle Social Security.” I’m sure Friedman will be happy to learn that...
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