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Deficit reduction

August 4, 2011

So now after the debt ceiling has been raised and both parties back to pointing figures…before we go any further let us see what they have agreed on:

  1. Total debt ceiling increase of about 2.1 Trillion dollars
    1. $900 Billion now
    2. $1.2 Trillion later on when president ask for it IF Congress does not approve a joint resolution $1.2trillion in savings
  2. The deal puts in place the annual discretionary spending caps found in the bill the Republican-controlled House passed last week worth about $917 billion in cuts over 10 years. But those caps, from $1.043 trillion in fiscal 2012 to $1.234 trillion in fiscal 2021, are now split between “security” and “non-security” spending, enforceable by across-the-board cuts. The bill defines the “security category” as ‘discretionary appropriations associated with agency budgets for the Department of Defense, the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Veterans Affairs, the National Nuclear Security Administration, the intelligence community management account, and all budget accounts under international affairs.
  3. Forming a SuperCommittee ….. (To me sounds like Mission Impossible): The committee will have 12 appointed members assigned by the top leaders from each party. This committee has the responsibility of coming up with $1.2 Trillion in additional reduction by 11/23.
  4. Pell Grant gets additional $20 Billion and Federal government will no longer defer interest rates on loans until student graduate.

Let us examine the Mission Impossible here:

We ‘the people’ are trusting the same politicians people who couldn’t/wouldn’t come up to a solution given ample time, to figure it out in 2 months? Remember DC is shut down until Sept for summer vacation. These are the same people who left 4000 FAA employees & 74,000 construction workers out of a job because they couldn’t come to an agreement over pity stuff. Yes Senate Majority leader did pass a bill to end the partial shutdown, but this is a temporarily one and most likely we will be back to same place in Sept.

So how can this SuperCommittee save us if they have already wasted $30 Million/day in tax collections from airlines ($330 million total for those 11 days)? Simple answer they can’t and they won’t so long as it’s all about me mentality exists in DC we will not move forward.

Therefore I suggest the following:

  1. Eliminate the SuperCommittee
  2. Get the back taxes from the airlines (they kept charging consumer the fees). That’s $330 million going back to workers and getting everyone back to work and spending at local level.
  3. Reduce senators in DC to 50 from 100. Why? What good really comes from them…we are in the 21st century we can really utilize new technology to reduce the inefficiency at DC (I will discuss this below). That is $174K/year per Senator which is about $9 Million/year *note.
  4. Reduce number of Congress by half as well from 435 to 218. That is 217 jobs eliminated that is costing us close to $38Million/year.*note

    *Note: I’m not taking into account reduction in insurance and retirement benefits here.

  5. Pull troops from Iraq & Afghanistan. The war has cost us over $1.2 Trillion since 2001 that is about $123 billion/year. If Iraq wants support they can start paying from their Oil or sign an agreement the USA gets all the oil until war debt is paid for. As for Afghanistan and the worries of Talaban attacking us and supporting Al-Qaida, well we have used more powerful weapons in past, we can surly use those again and avoid troop buildup and major cost.
  6. Provide a simple tax code, what has been touted as Flat tax. Have one simple tax rate on income (income being paycheck, capital gains from stock sales/options, etc.), allow charitable deduction, remove mortgage deduction (really doesn’t affect homeownership and might get people paying debt faster). According to Dick Armey (Former House Republican Leader). One of the Flat tax Advantages is: “It would reduce the cost of compliance from $593 Billion to an estimated $50 billion per year.” Let us just say that is $500 billion in reduction ($93 billion in expense for not making it that simple)
  7. Finally reduce or eliminate the foreign aid to all nations. Why in the world we are spending $8 billion/year ( for all these countries. Until we get our budget in order and you still want to be Mr. Nice guy at least reduce it by ½

Looking at all the savings above an estimated of $630 billion can be saved each year for a total of $6 trillion over 10 years. 

The big question is if we eliminated politicians how will we use 21st century to help run the country and vote on important issues (from voting of people in office to bills)? First of all in my opinion the country will run smoother with less people fighting who has better ideology in their party. Second if American idol and various polls can do voting using text, we can search products using barcodes and QR Codes why can’t we the people do the same on important issues?

So I suggest having every person 18years and older be able to vote on any issue affecting where we live and vote for people in office by:

  • Use of the smartphones (over 150 million in USA), tablets, PC (internet access, most laptops have cameras), ATMs, DMV for voting on local, state and government issues (such as the debt ceiling).
  • Create an app for all the smartphones to vote on City, County, State, Country issues. (close to 50% US population has one)
  • Create a website for voting on same issues for people with no smartphones. (240 million internet users)
  • Using the banks ATMs for another venue to vote, we trust our money and their security so can’t we do this?
  • Finally most DMVs have renewal machines outside to renew your car registration; this can also be used for voting.

Of course we need to address security issues (one person one vote). Security can be accomplished by a combination of Biometric scans (Retina, thumb print) which can be obtained during a person renewal of their driver license or their state ID, using a person special PIN (maybe last 4 digits of SSN) and passwords.

A simple example:

Do you want to increase the debt ceiling? (This is done on each issue and not bundle everything in one like what is currently done)? Voters have 24 hours to complete the process.

  1. Voter uses Smartphone, ATM, PC, or DMV to scan their Retina or Fingerprint
  2.  Enter PIN & Password
  3. Vote on issue
  4. Real time results
  5. Congress/Senate pass it and President sign it

As you can see we no longer need two parties controlling us and bickering among each other. True democracy at work, only one to blame is you for not voting or your vote created ripple effect (we can’t push blame on DC anymore), elimination of lobbyist (maybe their money can be used to improve the country not to line up the pockets of the few). Process is streamlined and efficient.


From → Economy, Politics

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