I'd like to thank our friends over at Blue Hampshire for bringing up a data visualization tool provided by the NY Times that shows projected budget shortfalls on the federal level and gives you several options of things you can check off as areas you'd support cutting from the federal budget or new taxes you'd support to help fill the budget gaps.
I'll save you the trouble of trying it yourself, you can check off every single cut they list and not eliminate the budget short fall. Checking every single spending cut without tax increases or penalties on tax payers in some way gives you only $405 savings compared to the $418 billion shortfall projection they list between now and 2015.
Unless you are unthinking, clearly it should speak out to you that this whole exteriorize is a bias joke because you can cut the budget down to eliminate the debt only areas that have room to cut are not areas the NY Times would want to consider.
Look closer at the options they give, sure they list some of the ones people bring up alot such as cutting foreign aid (which they only give the option of cutting it in half rather then eliminating it) and eliminating earmarks but the remaining are all health care related and military related. And it's even more obvious that this "tool" is a bias joke when you look at the details even closer. The only health cost options are things like increasing retirement age to 65 or 70 or reducing benefits for those with higher incomes.
Here's an idea, let's look at ALL departments and give options to cut everything and anything from the budget. They project a $418 billion shortfall over the next 5 years. Now based on the trillion+ in debt we've added this year and last year I have a hard time believing that the projected shortfall for the following five years will only be $418 billion, but suspending that disbelief I took a look at the 2010 federal budget found HERE. By the way, the 2010 budget shows revenue coming in at $2.381 trillion and expenditures at $3.55 trillion so in one year we've already more then doubled the projected five year deficit the Times projects. But as I said, we're going to ignore that and focus on only the $418 billion they claim...
We spend $46.7 billion on the department of education (up over 12% over the last budget). Think about for a moment and reflect back to the $41 million we actually received from the federal government that I wrote about early this week. Even if we just scaled that back to half we'd see a five year savings of $116.75 billion. That already is about a quarter of what we need to come up with according to the Times.
Then there's the "Department of state" which Obama has increased spending on by 40.9% in the past budget. That comes in at $51.7 billion. Let's just roll that back by the 40.9% Obama increased it back to $25.4 billion. That's a savings of $26.3 billion per year or a five year savings of $131.5
Just those two cuts alone put us up to $248.25 of the $418 billion shortfalls the Times projects.
And since Democrats love attacking military spending let's consider the department of defense which comes in at $663.7 billion. This number has been increased by Obama by 12.7%, not very leftist of him. That's an increase of $84.29 billion per year. We would only need to cut $33.95 billion per year off that amount to make up the remaining $169.75 billion the Times projects.
There it is, done in 3 cuts. Two of which are only cutting the new spending Obama added to the budget.
Now admittedly that's only a drop in the bucket compared to the real cuts that need to be made in order to eliminate the deficit but based on the Times and our friends at Blue Hampshire, it shows why Democrats lack the willingness to do what needs to be done to get this country back on the right track. Heck, I'm not sure all the Republicans have the willingness to make the tough choices that need to be made.
Until we as a country wake up and realize that we need to truly cut back not only on wasteful spending but on the handouts and services we've passed from ourselves onto the government to care for we will continue to see red ink.
So what will it be folks? Tough cuts or handing our paychecks to the government each week in hopes of them caring for us?