PJ Institute launched its National Economic Rescue Initiative a while back, and recently posted a fun game you can play. First, the setup — our deficit problem as it exists today:
In the year 2078 — I know that’s a long way out, but we’re already knee deep in debt — Federal spending will be $186,500,000,000,000. And still growing at an accelerating rate. Accelerating. The deficit for just that single year will be $49,300,000,000,000 — or more than three times the debt we’ve run up from 1789 until today.
Obviously, that’s not going to happen, but that is the path we’re set on by law. And few have shown the cojones to change that, and no one has demonstrated the ability.
So how do we get out? Watch:
We’ll call those dotted lines “The VodkaPundit Plan.” And as you can see, by that same 2078 magic date, we have a surplus of $5,000,000,000,000. Or enough to retire one-third of our present debt, in just one year. Only we won’t have to, because the debt will be gone long before then — and we’ll already be back to the serious business of cutting some more taxes.
So how did I do it? I only did two things: I got Uncle Sam out of the medical insurance business — which isn’t not authorized by the Constitution anyway. And I cut payroll taxes by 45% to reflect that. You want to pay off the debt sooner, you cut payroll taxes less.
But the rest of it — Social Security, aircraft carriers, earmarks, the strategic helium reserve, mohair subsidies, ethanol, Chevy Volts, getting into a land war in Asia — we can afford all the stupid rest of it. And pretty easily, too.
What’s destroying our budget is playing sugar daddy to old, richer people and taxing younger, poorer people up the wazoo to pay for it.
Go on. Click on over to NERI and play around with it yourself. I tried a Progressive dream scenario — I doubled income taxes (just on the rich, promise!) and cut military spending by two-thirds. Check it out:
So even if you do two impossible things — cut defense by 66% and increasing the income tax by 100%, you still end up with a $5,600,000,000,000 deficit that last year. There were some surpluses along the way — but eventually Medicare/Medicaid will catch up with us, and they will kill the budget.