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If Esquire Magazine can balance our budget, why can’t Congress?

Esquire Magazine put together a commission to balance the budget. You may not agree with all their decisions, but at least they did it. If you want to skip to the detailed results, they are here. They did it with a combination of sensible spending cuts with a small amount of tax increases.



  1. patriotsgt wrote:

    Because Esquire isn’t worried about being re-elected or trying to look important.

    Friday, November 19, 2010 at 8:02 am | Permalink
  2. starluna wrote:

    Having only looked at the results, all I can say is that this is interesting. I think some of their savings are a little optimistic. I’ve seen plenty of studies on malpractice reform and I’ve never seen a good study project national savings anywhere near the billions. Hundreds of millions, but not billions.

    I’m surprised they did not take on frivolous lawsuits by businesses targeting individuals or other businesses that do actually cost the federal court system billions of dollars.

    Friday, November 19, 2010 at 9:48 am | Permalink
  3. Jason Ray wrote:

    They did this using many of the same assumptions in the NY Times deficit balance game that IK posted a link to earlier this week. Malpractice reform in health care (according to the NY times game) saves something like $8B per year now and $13B per year down the road, so it’s noticeable – but not the biggest chunk.

    It’s very possible to balance the budget, but you just can’t leave Medicare, Social Security AND Defense off the table to do it. Eventually perhaps people will come around to the idea that we can still have the world’s best military but not spend quite as much as we’re spending now to get it.

    Friday, November 19, 2010 at 7:31 pm | Permalink
  4. Iron Knee wrote:

    Especially since we spend more on health care per capita than anyone else, and yet we don’t have the best health care system in the world.

    Why is it that Republicans get it that you can’t always just throw money at a problem to solve it, and yet they insist on just throwing money at the military?

    Friday, November 19, 2010 at 9:47 pm | Permalink
  5. patriotsgt wrote:

    On the military piece it’s probably because so many manufacturers and business are needed to support the military. From the people who make the boots, to helicopters, tanks, guns, bullets, food, clothing, etc. It’s an enormous industry and very beneficial locally for those with defense industry comp’s in their districts. It equates to good jobs and political contributions. Many of the businesses that support the military are also “small” businesses that get lumped in with the wealthy, which may be another reason why they are stubborn on letting the tax cuts for the wealthy fall.
    Think about it. In the military there are troops, between all 5 branches (yes the coasties are a branch), active, reserve and guard there may be 2 million + members. They all need 4-6 sets of uniforms, 10-12 sets of socks, T-shirts, etc. A minimum of 2 pairs boots, dress shoes, dress uniforms, 3 meals a day X 365 days, at least 1 weapon each, ruck sack, helmet, body armor, and on and on. Much of that gear has relatively short life spans, especially in combat.

    All the gear and supplies is bought on the market, all is american made. It a huge business broken down into many small companies. Each falls into some congressman’s district and when they get business, congressman get contributions and votes.

    Saturday, November 20, 2010 at 9:49 am | Permalink