Let's Get Specific
Social Security is getting a lot of attention these days. However, much of the discussion is centered on what not to do: don’t cut benefits; don’t raise taxes.
Should Old Performance be Forgot, and Never Brought to Mind? – The new fiscal year (2011) began on Friday. Instead of imbibing in champagne, CRFB presented some sobering statistics on fiscal year 2010 (see here). There is a lot that needs to be resolved; here’s hoping that solutions can be achieved for a better FY 2011.
With the fiscal debt clock ticking, the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget yesterday brought together members of Congress and other fiscal experts to talk about "Let's Get Specific: Ways to Fix the Federal Budget". Facing a soaring federal debt, it's difficult to discuss how to close the fiscal gap without getting specific, CRFB Co-Chairman Bill Frenzel told those attending the half-day session.
Our nation faces budget deficits for as far as the eye can see. When it comes to specific solutions to this problem, many politicians are more likely to embrace changes that would make the deficit situation worse, not better. The forum (click here for more details) will focus on a number of specific solutions to put the debt back on a sustainable path.
In her testimony before the President’s Fiscal Commission last week, CRFB President Maya MacGuineas presented the following plan as an option to stabilize the federal debt at the popularly considered maximum, 60 percent of GDP, in response to the request for specific policies to deal with the debt. Her plan (shown in the below table) is meant to achieve the 60 percent goal in a balanced manner, while protecting the most vulnerable and promoting economic growth. What follows is only one option for stabilizing the debt—but regardless of the plan we ultimately choose, it’s time to get specific in determining exactly how we are going to fix this grave problem.