The inauguration, President Obama will place his hand on Martin Luther King's Bible. Smiley characterizes the move as a clever political choice. It certainly is. It's as clever as a number of moves that don't hold true to the superficial viewpoint most people quickly accept and then, continue to accept over the long term. Did the administration actually "rescue" General Motors? In a fantasyland way it did. Just don't ask the shareholders of the GM shares that went to worthless. An ecological green economy, how about the list of those types of companies that went bankrupt which should include all those that are teetering on insolvency. I would never characterize the President for having anything but best intentions in mind. But the reality of life os om conflict with Smiley. He isn't aware, some goals are either unattainable or considerably way ahead of their time. Oil is still hugely cheaper than any green initiative and will continue to be for some time. Smiley in his blame game, pontificating that ending poverty is a something that should have already been accomplished, when in the real world lazy people will always be part of our culture, all cultures for that matter. Keep upping the tax revenue to fund foolish ideas, government waste and to boost the income of those that abuse the system. Yup, it plays to the masses for any politician racking up votes that run over those that embrace a true work ehtic.
galba_imperator, miltonsala offers an answer to your question. A partial one, or some may consider it that. galba_imperator our President, who in his first win, was succesfull by blaming Bush. But contrary to the criticism Barrack put out more than 4 years ago, he bloated the debt at a more alarming rate than his past criticism of Bush. Your reply presupposes that I take on the role of President when you ask where to start lowering the debt. I didn't run for office. It's not my job. Our country doesn't have a true leader, IMO. He is a highly adept politician that knows how to garner votes when those votes are undeserved. But I do agree with miltonsala that social security must have the retirement age moved up. When SS was instituted the demographics were, on the basis of math relative to the near-term payouts, had the appearance of a self-sustaining model. NOT TRUE TODAY. Age expectancy at inception was about 65. Perhaps our polticians had an inside jole back then? Payout SS benefits to dead people had to have been the punch line. Obama will make the tough decisions or will continue on a long-term path of fiscak destruction. It's that simple. Perhaps he has been hiding his leadership attributes all this time. Surely Obama's children will never need to worry about national financial stability.
I DON'T like social topics on a financial board ..... but, I did the math a couple times and it does not look good. Just my thoughts and I am unlikely to "debate" or "defend" them on this board.
It seems like if their is 7% of the 2012 budget is interest on the debt, and that your 90% number is high. But your question is very good.
There are lots of numbers but I get (in 2012) $3.6T SPENDING and $2.4T REVENUE.
There is $1.2T or so difference between SPENDING and REVENUE.
You can't cut $1.2T out of the $634 billion Non-defense discretionary.
You cannot fix this without making some changes to major programs.
You cannot fix this with the "yelling, taunting, insults and lack of cooperation" from both sides.
I THINK, and it is ONLY JUST MY OPINION (and I may be entirely wrong, but ... ), that the behavior of the extreme conservatives have earned them a strong distrust from the both the liberals AND those poor and sick struggling at the bottom of the economic ladder.
I THINK, and it is ONLY JUST MY OPINION (and I may be entirely wrong, but ... ), that the conservative and wealthy who benefit most from their work and end up carrying most of the financial load will have to take a LEADERSHIP role in working through a REALLY, REALLY GRAND BARGAIN to address a restructuring of programs.
I THINK, and it is ONLY JUST MY OPINION (and I may be entirely wrong, but ... ), that until the conservative/moderate leadership take this responsibility and a large majority agree, there will be little progress and the USA will be held hostage by the extreme fringe on both sides.
CBO's 2012 August Update Spending (I get $3.6T)
Social Security: $769 billion 21%
Medicare: $555 billion & Medicaid: $259 billion 22%
Defense Spending: $708 billion 20%
Other Mandatory (Entitlement) Spending: $473 billion 13%
Interest on the Debt: $238 billion 7%
Everything Else: $634 billion (often known as "non-defense discretionary") 17%
Medicare: $555 billion (Medicare is national health insurance administered by the federal government for people 65 and over and disabled Americans. It is financed by payroll taxes, general tax revenues, premiums and copayments.)
Medicaid: $259 billion (Medicaid, financed jointly by the federal and state governments, is administered by the states. It is the major health program for low-income Americans. A large portion of Medicaid pays for long-term care for low-income elderly.)
CRS Medicaid Primer
CRS Overview of Affordable Care Act, which expands Medicaid
Cost Estimate of the Affordable Care Act (CBO, 2010)
Cost Estimate of the Affordable Care Act (CBO, 2011 Update)
Cost Estimate of the Affordable Care Act (following the Supreme Court Decision (CBO, 2012)
Overview of Affordable Care Act (CRS, 2012)
Nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation Resources on Affordable Care Act
Nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation Summary of Affordable Care Act
Everything Else: $634 billion (often known as "non-defense discretionary" -- Includes law enforcement, veterans health care, homeland security, education, prisons, NASA, disease and epidemic control, highways & bridges, food and drug inspection, disaster relief, airports, health research, housing assistance, and many other functions of government.
Individual Income Tax $1165 billion 47%
Corporate Income tax $237 billion 9.5%
Social Security $841 billion 34%
Excise tax $79 billion 3%
Customs duties $31 billion 1%
Estate and gift taxes $11 billion 0%
Deposits of earnings and Federal Reserve System $81 billion 3%
Other miscellaneous receipts $24 billion 1%