Thursday, Oct 23, 2014
Columns

Budgets, budgets, budgets


Published:

The president finally produced his budget for 2014 even though it was more than two months late. The Senate also produced a budget for the first time in four years even though by law it is required to produce one every year, but then when did Congress think that laws also were meant for them?

The House produced its budget as†usual, so now we normal citizens will watch the circus as all those concerned accuse each other of being the roadblock to producing a realistic end result.

The Senate proposal makes no effort to balance the budget over the next decade. The House says that their proposal will balance the budget while not raising taxes. The presidentís budget increases spending by a trillion dollars and raises taxes by more than a trillion dollars. Each of these proposals look a decade into the future, and yet no Congress is responsible for anything other than the first year. Anything other than the year 2014 is a fantasy and make believe but is supposedly a plan.

Our current debt is closing on $17 trillion, and the presidentís budget will add $8 trillion to that debt. Does anyone believe that we can survive with a debt that large? Our credit rating was reduced once by Standard and Poorís because it believed that we were not serious about reducing our deficit.

None of these budgets really consider the effects of Obamacare that comes into being on Jan. 1. The reports that tend to be issued each day seem to predict it will be a disaster and cost a fortune. The ceaseless issue of new rules and regulations by the federal government also are unknown; however, if the last several years are any indication they will cost additional billions.

Sadly, I fear that far too many of our citizens pay little attention to what occurs in Washington. The budget is an example. Trillions of dollars are nearly beyond comprehension. The late í80s saw the first budget of a trillion dollars, and now we are approaching $4 trillion. Does our government need to be that big?

A recent Government Accounting Office reported 162 examples of government duplication in 31 different areas. As an example, do we really need three government agencies to inspect catfish?†

Why not get rid of the duplication? I suspect that the main reason is that each one is supported by a certain elected official. Itís not their money, so why should they be concerned.

Now that there are proposed budgets from all concerned, perhaps something positive will be done. Any time that any of us had to face an unexpected financial problem, the first thing that most of us considered was how to reduce spending that was not essential. The government must do the same.


Donald J. Myers, a retired colonel in the U.S. Marine Corps, is a regular columnist for Hernando Today. He lives in Spring Hill and can be contacted at dmyersusmc@aol.com.

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