Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

3/5/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Solution to crisis is much more complicated than both sides say.

The federal government is set to take in a record amount of cash this year, 2.7 trillion in revenues. It seems the Democrats have the extra revenues they want. Yet, they say they need more to make the budget work. Republicans say spending is the problem and are calling for cuts. So who's right, Republicans or Democrats? The answer is yes.

Should we cut, or raise taxes? The answer may be yes.

Should we cut, or raise taxes? The answer may be yes.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

3/5/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in Politics & Policy

Keywords: Republicans, Democrats, PR, economy, fiscal cliff, sequester, revenues, budget, cuts


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Neither Republicans or Democrats have been able to come up with a solution to the budget problem which has triggered a series of automatic spending cuts known as the sequester. These spending cuts are expected to impact the economy over the next several months.

Democrats say they need new revenues, a.k.a. taxes, to ensure there's enough money in the budget. They're right. Despite the record amount of revenue projected by the IRS, around $2.7 trillion, it's still not enough.

There are three basic reasons why the Democrats are right. First, the $2.7 trillion is just a prediction, and does not accurately reflect what the government will actually collect. Not all of the money gets paid. Second, inflation has reduced the purchasing power of the money, which means that while $2.7 trillion is a lot, it does not buy what it used to in 2007, when the government collected $2.6 trillion. Essentially, the government still has less purchasing power than in 2007.

Finally, programs such as Socials Security and Medicare, as well as massive expenditures by the government in other areas, continues to grow. Health care costs are out of control to the point that health care executives simply appear greedy, while the government continues to spend billions on pet projects and entitlements.

Meanwhile, Republicans want to see cuts in spending. Using the simple analogy of a household budget, Republicans say the government is maxing out its credit to support a lifestyle that is well beyond its means.

Cuts sound like an easy solution, however the programs targeted for cuts are dear to many people. Few want to see cuts to health care, and in fact they want to see more spending, not less. This is feeding a cycle of upward spiraling health care costs. With Obamacare ready to take full effect in just 10 months, it is likely that higher costs will be passed on to consumers via higher premiums and higher taxes.

Of course, the quality of care will not increase. It is a sad fact that the United States pays more for its healthcare than any other industrialized nation in the world, yet remains well behind even socialized countries in quality of care. Only for a select few, with premium plans, does care remain better.

So what needs to happen?

The only way the budget will be sustainable in future years will be to cut programs that the middle-class finds popular. That means Socials Security and Medicare, among others. Likely means testing will have to be introduced and at some point the spiraling costs will need to be addressed.

Insurance companies, which are growing ever fatter on the largesse of government money and approaching employer mandates, not to mention public necessity, are the only winners in a crisis that is approaching scandal.

Welfare spending is an issue as well, as it has been revealed that large segments of the population are now chronically unemployed or under-employed. The purchasing power of minimum wage has eroded so far that those earning the lowest wages require government assistance to support families.

Of course, the largest quantity of welfare is paid out to private contractors

Yet, cuts to these programs are unpopular. Politicians who support them will soon see themselves ushered out the door, especially those who hail from blue districts. Naturally, this goes against every fiber of being for a political creature, whose chief interest is clinging to power. It is a side-effect of a broken political system which rewards clever manipulation and doublespeak rather than wise governance.

Of course, one way to close the gap quickly is to blend spending cuts with new taxes. These would not the supposedly "new" taxes that came about as a result of the expiration of the Bush-era tax cuts, but rather genuinely new taxes. Nor does this include the massive new, backbreaking tax that is Obamacare.

In addition to these new revenues, the government should look closely at those agencies which provide services at growing costs to the people. While price controls are always a bad idea, there may need to be carefully considered reforms in healthcare and other industries that promote affordable services, such as healthcare. For example, healthcare itself (not research) should be a non-profit exercise. Instead, the entire apparatus is shifting into overdrive as insurers and providers cash in.

Fundamental to this is a reform in the political system itself. Bought-and-paid-for politicians will not solve the problems they were paid to create. For that, it falls to us, the citizens, to replace them with ethical actors who will govern wisely, rather than profitably.

Of course, given the average level of political interest in learning how to understand doublespeak and stay informed on the byzantine politics of the time, that's even more unlikely than the coming crash.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


© 2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for September 2014
Mentally disabled:
That the mentally disabled may receive the love and help they need for a dignified life.
Service to the poor: That Christians, inspired by the Word of God, may serve the poor and suffering.



Comments


More Politics & Policy

Rockefellers to sell investments in fossil fuel to switch to 'clean energy' Watch

Image of From left to right: Stephen Heintz, President of the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, Valerie Rockefeller Wayne, the chair of the fund, and Steven Rockefeller, a son of Nelson Rockefeller and a trustee of the fund, in New York, Sept. 16, 2014.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

In a bold move that illustrates just how far climate change has reached the public's consciousness, heirs to the Rockefeller family have announced that they intend to sell investments in fossil fuels and reinvest in clean energy. The announcement is a ... continue reading


CAN'T KEEP UP: So many employees leaving Department of Homeland Security, it poses risk to U.S. Watch

Image of The vacating of those in top management positions in the Department of Homeland Security has helped slow the rollout of key cybersecurity initiatives.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The Department of Homeland Security, or DHS has seen an exodus of employees over the past four years. According to officials, this is leaving the United States open to potential terrorist strikes and cyber-attacks. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Employees ... continue reading


Shell game in Kansas - why Democrats don't have to win Kansas to win the Senate Watch

Image of Independent investor Greg Orman seems to have the advantage in the newly-reshaped senate race.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The race for Senate in Kansas may suddenly be the most crucial contest in the nation as Republicans scramble to protect their longtime incumbent, Bob Dole is back on the campaign trail, Democrats are being as quiet as possible about not having a candidate, and a ... continue reading


Are they on to something? Judicial Watch says terrorists are operating in Mexico Watch

Image of Beto O'Rourke, a Democrat who represents El Paso in the U.S. House of Representatives, called the area offices of various government agencies in response to a report that Middle Eastern terrorists were operating across the border in Mexico.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Judicial Watch, a controversial Web site that maintains that Middle Eastern terrorists are operating just cross the border from the United States from Mexico is evidently stirring up waves. Federal law enforcement sources in El Paso, Texas say that a United ... continue reading


CLOTHES HORSE: Wasserman Schultz losing confidence among Democrats Watch

Image of Stylish  Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman has alienated members of her own party by reportedly demanding that the party pick up the tab for her wardrobe!

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Two "faux pas" have alienated Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz from her party. Her criticism of the White House's handling of the border crisis and comparing tea party members to abusive husbands have alienated her constituency at ... continue reading


Supreme Court justice Sotomayor warns about drones encroaching on American way of life Watch

Image of Justice Sonia Sotomayor said that she's particularly troubled by the potential for commercial and government drones to compromise personal privacy.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Unmanned surveillance planes called drones pose a threat to the privacy of American citizens, warns Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor said. Speaking to students at Oklahoma City University's law school, Sotomayor says that frightening changes in technology ... continue reading


Obama says Islamic State 'is not Islamic' - what are they, then? Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

President Obama vowed to "degrade and destroy" the Islamic State insurgency in Iraq and Syria, He intends to do so with airstrikes and a minimal military presence on the ground. The president also declared that the Islamic State terrorists "are not Islamic." ... continue reading


Obama vows to attack Islamic State militants 'wherever they exist' Watch

Image of There has been some progress made against the group. After more than 150 U.S. airstrikes in Iraq in the past month, Iraqi and Kurdish forces have halted the Islamic State advance.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

President Barack Obama has vowed to attack Islamic State militants "wherever they exist." Obama will be sending a limited U.S. military presence of 475 personnel. The president also declared that the United States will act in concert with a broad coalition ... continue reading


Opinion: We Need a Blue Collar Conservative like Rick Santorum in the 2016 Presidential Campaign Watch

Image of Rick Santorum is not an establishment candidate. He threatens establishment leaders in both major political parties. he has always played the role of the underdog and been counted out by the many self professed experts. That is one of the greatest assets he would bring to the 2016 Presidential campaign. He has the potential to draw voters from across party lines and help to forge a new governing coalition which can resuscitate the American dream and set us on a course to brighter future. I sincerely hope he runs.

By Keith A. Fournier

Rick Santorum is a statesman in an age of salesmen - and women. He is a man with a chest.  I will be watching his movements over the next few months. If he decides to run, and I hope he does, he will bring along with him into his presidential campaign a ... continue reading


Pelosi favors sweeping regulations to save net neutrality and ban Internet 'fast lanes' Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

It's an unpopular stand for many Republicans, but House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi says she wants to give federal regulators sweeping new powers over Internet access. It's a necessity in order to save net neutrality and protect Internet users, she says. ... continue reading


All Politics & Policy News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Proverbs 21:1-6, 10-13
1 Like flowing water is a king's heart in Yahweh's ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 119:1, 27, 30, 34, 35, 44
1 How blessed are those whose way is blameless, who ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 8:19-21
19 His mother and his brothers came looking for him, ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for September 23rd, 2014 Image

St. Padre Pio
September 23: Francesco, named in honor of St. Francis of Assisi, was born to ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter