Thursday, October 21, 2010

Too big to cut?

The party line is that government is so big it can't be cut.
Even some Republicans, mostly those with beltway fever, are echoing this line.
Billions can be cut, easily. Examples:
The Department of Education. Totally unnecessary. Schools are a state and local function.
The Davis-Bacon Act. Enacted during the Depression to keep blacks from getting jobs, it adds billions to construction costs.
Highway trust funds. About a quarter of it is diverted into non-highway uses like bike lanes and choo-choo trains.Use it for what it was intended and/or cut it back.
The Department of Energy. Totally unnecessary.
Environmental Protection Agency. FDA, and dozens of others could be cut substantially.
Big savings would accrue by privatizing public parks and the twin monstrosities Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae.
Moving to the Fair Tax would be another money saving move. Failing that, fewer tax brackets, with lower maximum rates and capital gains rates.
Finally, the bloated bureaucracy, overpaid and under-worked. Freeze pay and convert pension plans to defined contribution.
All these have been discussed forever but if Congress wants to do something about the $13.7 trillion debt, which is propelling us to financial ruin, it needs to quit talking and act.

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