(BigGovernment.news) In case you haven’t noticed, the size, scope and annual cost of government at the federal level has become quite unmanageable in recent decades, so much so that we’re piling up year-on-year debt even before one red cent in any given fiscal year is budgeted and spent. Indeed, most of the federal budget actually consists of automatic and mandatory spending, leaving Congress and president’s with a shrinking portion of discretionary spending each year.
Fortunately, however, there is a way to reduce this destructive cycle. Actually, there are five ways, and they are brilliantly laid out in a new plan authored by the Heritage Foundation.
Justin Bogie, a senior policy analyst in fiscal affairs at the foundation, says that by the year 2026, using current fiscal policy and budget figures, the annual federal deficit will rise to an “unsustainable” $1.4 trillion.
“The U.S. is on an unsustainable course that threatens to reduce economic prosperity for current and future generations,” he writes. “The Heritage Foundation’s Blueprint for Balance: A Federal Budget for 2017 quickly reverses this course, turning trillion-dollar deficits into multi-billion-dollar surpluses. In total, the blueprint reduces deficits by over $9 trillion through 2026, compared to current CBO projections.”
Bogie says the proposal achieves primary balance, which is spending minus interest costs, in the very first year, while eliminating the entire federal deficit within seven years (inside of a full two presidential terms, something the next president who is thinking about leaving a legacy should consider). What’s more, he says, the proposal achieves its budgetary objectives “without counting any benefits from growing the economy and at the same time repealing all of the tax revenues associated with Obamacare.”
Specifically, the budget proposal outlines these steps:
Achieving spending control responsibly: “Over the next decade, the Heritage budget would reduce the growth in spending to an average rate of 1.7 percent annually, well below the nearly 5-percent annual growth rate under CBO’s baseline projection. Total outlays under the plan are almost $10.5 trillion lower than CBO estimates over the next 10 years,” Bogie writes.
Real entitlement program reform: Bogie notes that federal spending on entitlements is growing rapidly because it is on “autopilot,” consuming an ever-larger percentage of the budget each year. What’s more, tens of trillions (some say hundreds of trillions) of dollars’ worth of unfunded mandates await our children and grandchildren, an obviously insurmountable fiscal object to their future economic success.
“This blueprint would repeal Obamacare; modernize Medicare by transitioning to a premium-support system and making key reforms to meet demographic, fiscal, and structural challenges; cap the federal allotment for Medicaid and give states greater flexibility in designing benefits and administering the program; and make commonsense reforms to Social Security to ensure that seniors and individuals with disabilities are protected from poverty, while accounting for increased life expectancy, reducing the growth in benefits, and modernizing disability benefits,” Bogie writes.
Prioritizes discretionary spending and reduces waste: “The Heritage Blueprint for Balance would reduce non-defense discretionary spending by almost $100 billion in the 2017 fiscal year alone,” says the fiscal policy analyst. “This is accomplished by eliminating programs that benefit special interest groups at the expense of taxpayers, that would be more efficiently administered by the private sector or state and local governments, and that are wasteful or duplicative.”
Repeals Obamacare and implements tax cuts: As reported by CNSNews.com on Friday, federal tax revenues, as of February, had already hit a record, raising the amount of average taxes paid by Americans. The Heritage budget proposal would dramatically alter this landscape.
“The Heritage Blueprint for Balance would save taxpayers over $1.3 trillion in taxes by repealing President Obama’s disastrous health care law,” writes Bogie. “Unlike every congressional budget proposal, the Heritage plan repeals all of Obamacare, including its tax revenues. This will benefit job creators as well as individuals and help get the nation’s economy back on track.”
Read the entire plan here.
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