The Federal Budget

I was reading David Wessel’s article in the Wall Street Journal this morning regarding the budget and his perspective that the big issues are not going to be dealt with properly.  Big Issues?

“I’m waiting for the politician to get up and say: There’s only one way to do this. You dig into the big four: Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security and defense,” former Sen. Alan Simpson (R., Wyo.), co-chairman of a deficit commission Mr. Obama appointed, said Sunday on CNN. “Anybody giving you anything different…you want to walk out the door, stick your finger down your throat, and give them the green weenie.”  Mr. Wessel looked up the “green weenie.” It was a plastic hot dog that Pittsburgh Pirates fans once waved to bestow good luck on their team and jinx opponents.

Senator Simpson, who I’ve had the pleasure of hearing in person several times over the years, has hit the nail on the head.  We as a nation need to realize that all the discussion about taxing the rich and cutting budgets is just political posturing.  We are attempting to live beyond our means, and that’s where President Obama does have it right – but we have to address all four of the Big issues – not just pick and choose the ones we like/dislike.  So, let’s start by making a 10% across-the-board cut in all those Big Four and see where it takes us.  In the long-term, us baby boomers will do fine; our present day seniors will survive; and our children/grand-children will thank us.

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