Americans don’t really want spending cuts: This article is brutally honest, in two places. First, this is an important point to note:
Any truly meaningful debt reduction plan must include Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security. Why? For the same reason criminals rob banks: That’s where the money is. Entitlements today gobble 41 percent of federal spending, and with baby boomers beginning to retire and living longer, the cost of these programs will almost certainly become unsustainable. No serious deficit reduction is possible without including entitlements.
Okay, so that’s point one – any discussion of deficit reduction without talking about painful cuts to entitlements is pointless. I would also include Defense in this discussion, honestly.
Any talk about things like “cutting foreign aid” (less than 1 percent of the federal budget) is pointless blather. You want to cut that? Go for it. When you’re done, we’ll still have the exact same problem, but I’m sure you’ll feel better. Also ridiculous was Obama’s crusade to root out wasteful government regulations. A superficially noble cause, for sure, but one that would have exactly zero impact on the deficit.
The bottom line is that the massive elephants in the room are entitlements and Defense. Every other thing fades into the background compared to those two. And as the population grows and ages, they’re just going to get bigger and bigger.
We clear on that? Awesome. Here’s point two:
“Americans across all age groups and ideologies said by large margins that it was ‘unacceptable’ to make significant cuts in entitlement programs in order to reduce the federal deficit. Even Tea Party supporters, by a nearly 2-to-1 margin, declared significant cuts to Social Security ‘unacceptable.'” (NBC-Wall Street Journal)
[...] A poll finds that “78 percent oppose cutting spending on Medicare as a way to chip away at the debt. On Medicaid – the government insurance program for the poor – 69 percent disapprove of cuts.” (ABC-Washington Post)
[...] with debt talks between the White House and Republican lawmakers dominating the headlines, a CNN poll said resistance to cuts was even greater, with 87 percent of Americans opposing Medicare cuts, and 84 percent Social Security cuts.
Okay, so let’s recap: (1) painful spending cuts must occur, and (2) as a populace,we don’t want to make them.
And that, folks, is why are our taxes are going nowhere but up.