How to Fix the United States’ Debt Problems & Reduce Federal Deficits

According to projections by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), America will continue to spend more than it receives in revenues from 2016 to 2026, and perhaps beyond. The budget deficit is projected to be slightly below 3% of gross domestic product (GDP) through 2018, then rise to 4.9% by 2026.

If the CBO projections are accurate, the federal debt will grow another $9.4 trillion by the end of the 10-year period, with potentially dire consequences for the country. According to the authors of the report, “The likelihood of a fiscal crisis in the United States would increase. There would be a greater risk that investors would be unwilling to finance the government’s borrowing needs unless they were compensated with very high interest rates; if that happened, interest rates on the federal debt would rise suddenly and sharply.”

Higher interest rates – averaging 2.3% in 2014 and 2015, as reported by TreasuryDirect – on an increasing amount of debt are likely to cause a “crowding out” effect, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis. As the Federal Government borrows more money to pay its bills, there is less capital available for the private sector.

Many believe that the CBO’s concern is understated. In his testimony before the United States Senate Budget Committee February 25, 2015, economist Dr. Laurence J. Kotlikoff of Boston University bluntly stated, “Our country is broke. It’s not broke in 75 years or 50 years or 25 years or 10 years. It’s broke today. Indeed, it may well be in worse fiscal shape than any developed country, including Greece.” Kotlikoff claims that Congress has “cooked the books” for years, and that the difference between the present value of all projected future government expenditures less the present value of all projected future receipts was actually $210 trillion in 2014, more than 16 times the actual reported debt.

Whether or not economists agree on the appropriate level of the federal debt, there is agreement that the only way to reduce annual deficits and pay down the debt is for the government to collect more than it spends – an unlikely (if not impossible) result in today’s political atmosphere. Only six times between 1960 and 2015 has the Federal Government spent less than it collected, according to the Office of Management and Budget. Most recently, in 2015, the Federal Government collected $3.25 trillion in taxes, almost 60% from income taxes, while spending $3.69 trillion. As a result, the budget deficit of $439 billion – the lowest deficit since 2008 – was added to the federal debt.

The Myth of Economic Growth as a Solution

Politicians regularly suggest that the deficit problem can be resolved as the economy improves because revenues through taxes naturally increase as incomes rise through stronger growth. Such thinking encourages postponing actions that are politically unpopular, such as raising taxes or cutting popular programs.

Hoping that economic growth can solve America’s problems is likely futile for the following reasons:

  • GDP Growth Is Projected to Be Lower Than in the Past. According to the CBO’s Budget and Economic Data, annual growth averaged 3.2% to 3.3% from 1974 to 2001, 2.7% from 2002 to 2007, and 1.4% from 2008 to 2015. While the economy is recovering, the CBO projects average annual growth from 2016 to 2025 at 2.0%, well below the average prior to 2008.
  • Widening Income Disparity Threatens Economic Growth. The trickle-down theory was discredited by a 2015 International Monetary Fund report, which indicated that when the rich get richer, no others benefit and growth slows. The data from more than 150 nations suggests that when the richest 20% of a society increases their income by 1%, the annual rate of GDP growth shrinks by nearly 0.1% within five years.
  • Costs for the Major Entitlement Programs Will Rise Sharply. The aging population, rising healthcare costs per person, and increased costs of the Affordable Care Act are likely to boost federal spending for Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid if current laws remain unchanged. As Kotlikoff testified, the estimated 76 million members of the Baby Boomer generation are already entering a period where each recipient will collect “$40,000 in Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid benefits each year.” As a consequence, the largest group of people to put money into the system – the Boomers – will begin taking it out. Left unchanged, Social Security will begin using its surplus funds to pay benefits in 2017 and deplete reserves by 2034.
  • Interest Costs on Federal Debt Will Triple in the Next 10 Years. According to CBO projections, net interest costs for the federal debt are projected to more than triple from $223 billion in 2015 to $772 billion in 2025.
  • Projections Do Not Include the Costs of New Wars for Defense Against Terrorism. The Watson Institute of Brown University estimates the costs to date of the wars in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Iraq at $4.4 trillion, all of which were funded by borrowing. Some analysts estimate the costs of the three wars even higher. The cost of future defense is unknown, but likely to be as high as – if not higher than – past wars.

us national debt

Potential Options to Reduce Deficits and the Federal Debt

For years, Americans have mortgaged their future by failing to make hard choices about taxes and spending. Continuing to delay intensifies the country’s debt problems and its impact on day-to-day life.

In November 2014, the CBO issued a report analyzing 79 options that lawmakers could take to reduce the annual deficit and national debt. Their options echoed the recommendations of the bipartisan Simpson-Bowles Commission that combined deep cuts in military and domestic spending, reduced or ended popular tax breaks, and significantly changed the entitlement programs of Social Security and Medicare. Their suggestions included revenue increases, as well as spending reductions.

Measures to Increase Government Revenues

Recognizing that a politically acceptable solution must include a combination of tax increases as well as spending cuts, the CBO recommended the following measures to increase federal revenues. Implementing all of these measures would add more than $606 billion annually to federal revenues.

1. Tax Increases
No one likes tax increases when the increase applies to their income. As a consequence, tax increases are so toxic for politicians that a pledge to never raise taxes “has become practically required for Republicans seeking office, and is a necessity for Democrats running in Republican districts,” according to Grover Norquist’s Americans for Tax Reform. Nevertheless, any politically acceptable solution requires a combination of increased revenues and lower spending.

The following new taxes would increase federal revenues by approximately $1.9 trillion from 2016  through 2024:

  • Raise All Tax Rates on Ordinary Income by 1%. Each of the seven statutory tax rates – 10%, 15%, 25%, 28%, 33%, 35%, and 39.6% – would be raised 1%, producing an additional estimated $689 billion in revenues.
  • Implement a New Minimum Tax on Adjusted Gross Incomes (AGI) for Taxpayers Exceeding $1 Million in AGI. This option would impose a new minimum tax equal to 30% for taxpayers with AGI above $1 million. They would also receive a credit equal to 28% of their charitable contributions. The new tax would add an estimated $66.1 billion to federal revenues.
  • Increase Tax Rate on Long-Term Capital Gains and Dividends by 2%. This change would add $52.9 billion to federal revenues between 2015 and 2024.
  • Include Foreign Income in Taxable Income. U.S. citizens living outside the country can exclude $200,000 from taxation, even if they pay no taxes to the country in which they live. While the change would continue the deduction for taxes paid to foreign governments, it would ensure tax parity with U.S. citizens and contribute an additional $96.2 billion in revenues in the first 10 years.
  • Tax Social Security Benefits. This change would treat Social Security benefits similarly to the way defined benefit pensions are taxed and add an additional $412 billion to federal revenues in the first 10 years.
  • Increase Corporate Taxes by 1%. While the highest tax bracket is 35% for corporate income above $10 million, the effective rate is much lower due to tax credits and the lower taxes that apply to income below the $10 million threshold. This option would increase all corporate tax brackets by 1% and add and estimated $102 billion in revenues through 2024.
  • Increase Excise Taxes on Fuel to 35 Cents per Gallon. Currently, federal excise tax on a gallon of gasoline is 18.4 cents and 24.4 cents for a gallon of diesel fuel. These rates were established in 1993 when crude oil prices were $16.75 per barrel; oil prices reached over $140 per barrel in 2008 and have fallen to the mid-$30 range since. This increase would add $469 billion to the Highway Trust Fund to pay for infrastructure upgrades and mass transit over the next decade.

2. Closing Tax Preferences (Loopholes)
Tax preferences are controversial, since an incentive to one party is a loophole to another. Historically, preferences – deductions and credits – have been used for tax relief or encouragement to make certain investments for the social good. According to the independent tax research organization Tax Foundation, the total cost of preference items in 2015 was $1.339 trillion – $131 billion for corporations and $1.208 trillion for individuals. Eliminating or reducing some of the preferences can significantly increase federal revenues.

Proposals from the CBO relating to tax preferences include the following:

  • Convert Mortgage Interest Deduction With a 15% Tax Credit. The option would be phased in over a six-year period. The maximum interest deduction – $1 million currently – would be reduced $100,000 for each year with a 15% credit based upon $500,000 maximum mortgage debt becoming effective in 2020. Additional revenues through 2024 would be $113 billion.
  • Eliminate Deduction for State and Local Taxes. The value of certain itemized deductions including state and local taxes would be reduced for taxpayers above a specified threshold of AGI. Revenues accruing to the Fed are estimated to be $1.088 trillion through 2024.
  • Reduce Deductions for Charitable Giving. Only contributions above 2% of AGI would be deductible for taxpayers who itemize and higher-income tax payers would be further restricted. The additional taxes paid through 2024 are estimated at $213 billion.
  • Limit Itemized Deductions for Individuals. This proposal would limit the tax benefits of itemized deductions to 28% of their total value and add an additional $139 billion to the revenues through 2024.
  • Limit Annual Contributions to Retirement Plans. An individual’s maximum allowable contribution would be limited to $5,000 for IRAs and $15,500 for 401k-type plans annually, regardless of the contributor’s age. Total defined contribution plan limits for employee and employer would be reduced to $47,000 annually. This change would result in additional revenues of $82.5 billion through 2024.
  • Eliminate Percentage Depletion Allowance for Extractive Industries. The use of cost depletion for recovery of investment costs would remain intact, but percentage depletion would be eliminated. This change would provide an estimated $21.3 billion over the next 10 years.
  • Eliminate Tax Preferences for Education Expenses. This suggested change would eliminate the American Opportunity Tax Credit (AOTC) and the Lifetime Learning tax credit while canceling the reinstatement of the Hope tax credit. Maximum deductibility of interest expenses for student loans would be reduced in annual increments of $250 over the next 10 years. This option would add $150 billion in revenues through 2024.

federal spending 100 bills

Measures to Reduce Spending

A majority of Americans favor a deficit-cutting strategy that increases government revenues and cuts government expenditures. Unfortunately, legislators have shown little interest and less action in tackling the issues. Ultimately, the political stalemates have been resolved by temporarily raising the debt ceiling without any meaningful change in our fiscal approach.

The CBO recommendations include reductions in mandatory and discretionary spending:

  • Reduce or Eliminate Benefits for Lower-Income Beneficiaries. This would be achieved by a combination of reducing benefits to lower levels and raising the level of income required to participate in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). Other measures include eliminating subsidies for meals served in the National Lunch and School Breakfast Programs for those families who earn more than 185% of federal poverty guidelines as well as eliminating Supplemental Security Income benefits for children. The estimated average annual savings would be $53.5 billion.
  • Reduce or Eliminate Subsidized Loans, Including Pell Grants, for Undergraduate College Students. The grants would also be restricted to the most needy students. These measures would reduce spending over 10 years approximately $114.4 billion.
  • Reduce Disabled Veteran Benefits. The recommendation would produce approximately $15 billion in annual savings.
  • Reduce Federal Pensions for Government Employees and Military Personnel. Estimated savings would be $600 million per year.
  • Cap Basic Pay for Military Service Members. The recommendation also includes substituting civilian employees for Armed Service members to generate 10-year savings of $24 billion.
  • Eliminate or Reduce Defense Programs. Recommendations include canceling the purchase of the new F-35 Joint Strike Fighters and using advanced versions of fighter aircraft already being used. In addition, the government would stop building new aircraft carriers, reduce the number of ballistic missile submarines, and defer development of a new long-range bomber. The annual spending reduction is estimated to be $8.4 billion.
  • Eliminate Space Exploration Programs. Halting programs like the Mars Exploration Program would save $7 billion each year.
  • Reduce the Number of Government Employees. Limiting replacement personnel to no more than one employee for every three workers who leave and reducing the annual across-the-board adjustment for civilian employees would save an estimated $10.3 billion annually.
  • Reduce Highway Funding and Eliminate Grants and Subsidies to Airports, Amtrak, and Transit Systems. Projected spending would fall by an estimated $10.4 billion yearly.
  • Repeal the Davis-Bacon Act. This legislation requires employers to pay workers on federal projects the prevailing wage for workers with similar duties and responsibilities in the region. Repealing the Act would mean that workers on federal projects are paid lower wages and would save about $1.2 billion per year.

If all the spending reductions proposed by the CBO were implemented, the total reduction would be approximately $220 to 240 billion annually, or about 55% of the 2015 deficit. 

Entitlement-Specific Recommendations

More than one-half (52%) of federal expenditures go to pensions and healthcare – primarily the two entitlement programs, Social Security and Medicare/Medicaid. In addition to general tax increases and spending cuts, the CBO recommended a number of revenue increases and benefit cuts specific to SS/Medicare/Medicaid and other government health programs – the entitlement programs many believe are the root of our deficits:

  • Increase Earnings Limit for Social Security Payroll Tax. Currently, only $117,000 of earnings are subject to the tax. Raising the amount subject to tax to $241,600 and indexing it to inflation would add $687 billion to the Social Security Trust Fund.
  • Raise the Full Retirement Age for Social Security Benefits. The current retirement age for those born in 1960 or later is 67. Raising the age to 70 over a six-year period would save $35 billion in expenditures through 2024.
  • Link Initial Social Security Benefits to Average Prices. Calculating the benefits based upon growth in the Consumer Price Index rather than the growth in wages – the current method – would reduce annual expenditures by approximately $8.6 billion.
  • Reduce Benefits for Future Social Security Beneficiaries 15%. Only those people who turn 62 after January 2016 would be affected. Estimated 10-year savings are $204 billion.
  • Change the Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) Index for Social Security. Replacing the traditional CPI measure with the “chained” CPI can reduce Social Security payments between 2016 and 2026 by $116.4 billion.
  • Increase Medicare Payroll Tax Rate to 3.9% of Payroll. Adding 1% to the current tax rate of 2.9% would raise an estimated $800 billion between 2016 and 2026. The new tax increase would be shared equally between employee and employer. The existing surtax of 0.9% of payroll applies to employees earning $200,000 and more can remain in place.
  • Increase Premiums for Medicare Parts B and D. Current premiums are set at 25% of Part B costs per enrollee and 25.5% for Part D costs. Raising the premiums to 35% of cost would have increased premium revenues by $299 billion for the period 2014 to 2015.
  • Raise the Federal Tax on Alcoholic Beverages and Cigarettes. The former would be raised to $16 per proof gallon (equivalent to about $0.25 per ounce) and another $0.50 per pack would be added to the excise tax on cigarettes. While these suggestions can increase government revenues, the primary intent is to reduce use of alcohol and tobacco, two substances that significantly affect the nation’s healthcare costs.
  • Shift More Costs of Care to Medicare and Tricare Beneficiaries. Those affected would be almost 9.5 million active duty service members, National Guard and Reserve members, military retirees, and their families in the Department of Defense’s healthcare program. 10-year savings are estimated at $73 billion.
  • Require Drug Manufacturers to Pay a Minimum Rebate of 23.1% for Drugs Supplied to Low-Income Medicare Part D Beneficiaries. Previously, the rebate was negotiated between private Part D plans and drug makers. If this recommendation is implemented, the rebate would be paid directly to Medicare. This change would add $103 billion to Medicare over 10 years.

treasury department building in washington

Final Word

Solving the nation’s debt problems won’t be easy. Many are sure to call the CBO’s proposed recommendations “draconian” and may refuse to consider their imposition. At the same time, our political leaders have been reluctant to take the necessary steps to stop the cycle of repeated deficits, preferring to pass the buck to future generations. As a consequence, according to Heritage Foundation fellow Romina Boccia, quoted in a 2016 Washington Examiner article, “the younger, working generations would have lower personal incomes and fewer job opportunities due to the high National debt.” The Fiscal Times claims that young Americans have been “robbed of their birthright” and will be “the first generation whose prospects are lower than those of their parents.”

The solutions to excessive debt are apparent, though unpopular, and will require sacrifices on the part of everyone. For generations, Americans have lived beyond their means. The bill has come due.

Are you worried about the debt and its impact upon you, your children, or grandchildren?

  • averagejoe

    For a start: IMPEACH OBAMA!

    Then, the rest will be easy.

    • Guest

      You suck.

    • baROCKtheVOTE

      What has he done to deserve to be impeached?

      • bak2regan

        hm… lets see how bout “acts of misdemeanor” like mabey digging our economy into a huge hole, sky rocketing our national debt, and imposing health care on all of us as citizens. and guess what… im gona be the one paying for all of this mess. im sixteen, by the time i turn 18 the debt is projeted to reach 18 trillion. guess who gets to pay for that? ya, i guess i can kiss retirement goodbye…

        • Roseslaura1218

          Actually President Regan is the one who messed up our economy the most. Everytime America was in debt presidents quickly did stuff to fix the debt problem but now none of our leaders are doing that. Regan is also the reason why we have to pay to go to college. Hes the reason why college is now a business. President carter tried to fix the debt but people got him impeached, because alot of people dont know how messed up this economy is. President Obamam tried to fix the healthcare system for old people so that they wont have to pay hospital bills when they get old, but they wuldnt let him pass the bill to do so. you should really know your facts.
          Check out the videos I.O.U.S.A. and Healthcare-Frontline.

    • Gandysmiley

      Lets be REAL, the economy was already f ‘ up before Obama got into the office. It is hard fixing something that is already JACKED up. If you wanted to impeach somebody, you should have impeached BUSH! He is the reason the economy sooooo messed up now.

      • Sam

        Obama has had 5 years to fix it. And he tripled the debt. I guess that’s Bush’s fault too, right? Stop letting Obama brainwash you and do your own research.

  • Steve

    It’s a two-pronged approach to the deficit for sure, but the bigger question is this: exactly to WHOM is our deficit owed? Other countries? The World Bank? Mom and Dad? My family debt might be, say, $10,000, but there are creditors who I am going to pay before others depending on interest rates, principal balance remaining, and so forth.

    Without getting too far into that, the biggest thing we can do is to look at what we spend. Getting another revenue source is ALWAYS harder than cutting what you DO make, and cuts to entitlements and programs is our surest way to ease the deficit. I’m in my late 30’s, and I would support bumping up the Social Security retirement age a year or two to save money in the long run. States and private corporations have done the same thing with their pensions; Social Security needs to do the same thing. Cut EVERY government program by 1-3% and then index future spending growth to inflation.

    REPEAL OBAMACARE and work on a more moderate solution! Health care is primarily in the hands of the individual. Healthy living can decrease length and severity (and even frequency) of many diseases, and rewriting such legislation to more accurately tie government-assisted insurance coverage to individual choices will eliminate a good portion of the crazy quilt of what Obama and his Congress threw together.

    NO NEW GOVERNMENT PROGRAMS! Any programs that the U.S. should need in the immediate future should come out of existing budgets. The only exceptions to this would be catastrophic events of national security, such as a large-scale war or protection of a vital strategic interest, or perhaps a calamitous natural disaster.

    Taxes should not go UP at all…new tax streams might be considered, but the core tax – individual income taxation – should be sacrosanct and, if anything, should be lowered across the board, perhaps tying future increases and decreases to rise/decline in actual collected revenue per dollar taxed. If tax revenue as percentage of tax goes up, we continue to slightly reduce income taxes. If it goes down, we keep it as it is.

    More to say, but I’ll leave it be for now. Thanks for the forum!

  • JH

    There are many ways to fix the debt problem.
    Create jobs, maybe Obama should take a look at the FDR New Deal, to learn how that is done.
    Possibly raise federal income tax by 1.5-2.0% over a 5 year span.
    Start spending the money wisely.
    Since there is no money to be had, then do not spend what you do not need to spend.
    Lower taxes for companies will not move over-seas.
    I believe, that if an individual makes more than 150,000 they should pay about a 3.5 federal income tax.
    That is $4,500 per indiv. that makes over $150K. (this is 5% of the American Population making over 150,000) just an example….
    That would bring in around $69,076,473,750. (This should be enough to fix the budget problems). (This is also a calculation of one making 150,000 no more or no less).
    Make people want to spend more, let them have faith in the United States Gov.
    Be smart with spending, don’t overspend and plan.

  • Ashley

    I think we should start out but cutting the budget in half. Thats right in Half.
    Lets take out Planned Parent Hood completely. 350 million tax payer dollars goes to it. All these people getting abortions on our tax dollars, while there are lots of us (myself included) that are unable to have them.
    Every government official include president cut there salary in half. no more 1.6 million dollars for 4 years of work or lack there of.
    Enough with the health care system being shoved down our throats. I dont want you to decide if i should live or die.
    Hospitals already get money back from the government when one does not pay their bill….and they will still come after you. and get more money.
    No more pension plans for gov. workers. I have a 401k maybe you should rely on that, instead of everyone else.
    And when cutting the budget. Please use the one in place, not one that has not been in place ever. I would love to have 100 thousand dollar budget then make cuts so im saving money. But if i dont have it to start with… IM NOT SAVING ANY MONEY….

    Thank you kindly for reading this!

    • Missouri33

      You still don’t realize that one, planned parenthood does more than perform abortions and two that abortion are not paid for by our tax dollars.

  • Jess

    In my opinion, the deficit could be easily fixed by something as simple as legalizing marijuana. Hear me out! If marijuana were legalized, the government would tax it just as they tax cigarettes and alcohol. And not only would it create a tax increase for the government but it would decrease the number of inmates incarcerated due to possession of marijuana. Our tax dollars go towards the support of prisoners so why not redirect where the money goes and help fix the deficit? What about the health risks right? Well cigarettes, alcohol, caffeine, and McDonald’s are killing Americans but all of those are legal, and taxed! Of course there would be an inforced age to which marijuana is sold, just as (once again) there is for cigarettes and alcohol. It’s something to think about.

    • Missouri33

      There are too many special interest groups that would fight this. First, the neocons would fight it. Second, law enforcement and the prison industry and all their suppliers would fight it. Third, the drug dealers would fight it.

      I agree with you, but we have created too many jobs that depend on the war on drugs. I think they should legalize all drugs. If you are stupid enough to use them, go for it.

  • Qabalah777

    You wrote: ” In addition, the largest portion of the federal government’s budget is spent on defense spending.” This is incorrect. By far the largest portion of the federal budget is entitlements. By far! But if you added the word “discretionary” to your sentence in front of the word “budget”, this would make it correct. Before we raise a single tax, both the gov and those who suckle on entitlement teats need to go on austerity programs. Because when I am in debt I cannot just raise my pay! Stop spending on nonessential crap!

  • Tigermcmillian

    Spending cuts need to start at the TOP…..The White House…..from the President on down…..they are making waaaaaaay toooooo much money….cut out all frivoous spending….the citizens of the US probably have no idea what “OUR” tax dollars are being wasted on every single day…..

  • Twsullins

    Raise Tariffs, cut tax breaks on the wealthy and big corporations, raise taxes across the board 1% on the middle class and 15% on the wealthy for 2-4 yrs. Have everyone in congress and the senate take a pay cut for 4 yrs. and if you did not serve in the federal government for twenty yrs., i.e. senate and house you do not get a pension for life. Stop any and all public assistance for anyone that is not a citizen of the US. If you make more than 100,000 a year in your retirement pension you don’t get SSI or Medicare, but I will give you a tax break for investing in America. Incorporate a state tax for every state to handle their own pet projects and not count on the federal government for money. Legalize marijuana and tax the hell out of it. Kick people out of our country that are a drain on our economy (just wishing) but if you are a violent criminal I would send you to an island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean and let you fend for your self along with the other violent criminals placed there before you. I would use the National guard to guard the southern boarder, build a Berlin style wall on the southern boarder that is also a solar generator and rain water harvester, build a 1 million sq. ft. recycling center on the boarder of CA, AZ, NM, TX and Mexico run it 24 hrs a day, hire Mexicans to work it at Americas minimize wage w/no benefits, when they are done with their shift they go back home to Mexico. Educate everyone in America and have a very good preventive maintenance medical care system, not a national health care system, we know how that worked out. Have all state and federal employees work 4 days a week, example 1st group M-TR & 2nd group TU-F, understand? I hope so. And the kicker…stop all this wasteful spending, my god. I have a lot more but it is complicated and quite involved. Hit me up people at [email protected]

  • Jqpublic

    All interesting ideas. The one thing that is missing is the point that the country, it’s goverment, and elected officials need to make the hard decisions.

    Yes, we need to raise taxes. No one wants to hear that but it must be done.
    Yes, we need to cut services. No one knows which ones.
    Yes, we need to fix Social Security, Medicare, but how?

    It is time for our elected officials to sit down and do what is right for the country, not what is right for reelection. I’m tired of hearing about the next election. I voted a person in to do a job, not run for office once he is two years into the job. If you do the job right, you will be reelected.

    We need to take responsibility for what we do. Limit the hand outs, pay the US first. Look at all the problems we have and we are still off saving the world. I agree it is important, but fix our own land first.

    Change social security so that 7-1/2% is invested for the person paying into the account. That 7-1/2% each year is for your own retirement, plus what you add thru savings, 401k, ira, etc. But you only get it if you pay in, no income limits on contributions. The other 7-1/2% the company pays goes into the general fund to cover early deaths, true disabilities, but again, only if you paid into the system. The system can support everyone. But if you start at a set year, say everyone starting work this year, in 40 years the problem would be limited. Yes, I know we have large expenditures to cover for everyone that paid into the plan, but you have to make a very hard decision here. Either fix now or be really screwed later.

    The deficit needs to be handled like any other budget method. What do we really need, national defense, SS/medicare, fire, police, education, etc. Cover that first. Then look at each and every program, vote, then priortise by number of votes, with the to vote getters getting the funding till all money is gone. Repeat each year. Businesses do it every year.

    The goverment must also keep a some “cap” room to handle unexpected changes. This could be covered by a borrowing clause.

    Promot business in the US. Cut down the federal and state regulations. We need to get jobs here, so support compaines that are US based, and US employeed. It doesn’t matter if it is GM or Honda building the car, what matters is how many US jobs does that company create. Establish some percentage of US works clause and reward companies.

    Since pensions are gone then push the 401k type retirement plan. Not just for employees in private and public companies, but the goverment also. Those types of plans are good enough for the general worker then they are good enough for goverment workes. It is time to make people responsible for their own retirement success. If a company wants to do more for it’s employees to keep them/hir them, then that is their right, but it must be budgetd for, even if it is a private company or goverment agency.

    I could go on for but I’m not sure why. It doesn’t seem to me that our elected officials really get what needs to be done. They seem very happy with the political bull%$!* and getting reelected, while what was a great country is going down the drain.

    I just wished they would read sites like this, then maybe, justmaybe, they would understand.

  • LoL

    The only viable answer is borrowing. Because …

    no one wants to pay more taxes …
    no one wants their service benefits cuts … cut others no my
    no want wants their income decrease … when spending is income to providers

    What about the military? Nah, the US is in the Business of war.

    • Toastftk

      im pretty sure borrowing is one of the root causes of this mess???

    • Hi

      You sir are retarded.

  • Chrissydolls

    Every U. S. citizen should donate a Dollar. We are all in this together. and we live here we shouldn’t let the government take us down. We need to work together and just donate 1 dollar to our country.

    • bak2regan

      one dollar? whoopdie doo… :P that will bring it from 49,000 a citizen to 48,999$ yay!

      • Cnikkel

        But will give the government 300 million dollars, and then some, in their budget increase each year.
        So in 1 decade, we will have given the government an additional billion dollars, and then some, with their already and STILL increasing revenue.
        Our debt is 16.2T, our income? 15.8T.
        Would YOU be sweating if you made 1580 a month and owed 1620 a month for all your expenditures?
        Not by much, I’m guessing.

  • Rayjackson1966

    Our country spends billions of dollars in clean air, clean water and maintaining our highways and streets. It’s time for the company’s as well as the people to start looking at the big picture. I feel if all cars, motorcycles, trucks, planes, boats and any other big machinery that has an effect on the environment should have to purchase a “USA” sticker @ $20.00 per year this money will take us out of our deficit and much more. Like fixing bridges that are about to fall… We all must take part not only for the deficit but for a better way of life for our children. “GOD BLESS AMERICA”,

  • Mnorkus22

    Our debt problem will not get fixed, American “leaders” are too selfish. If you really wanted to do it then you’d cut Social Security. SS doesn’t work, plain and simple it doesn’t work and there over 700 billion there. Next is Medicare/ Medicade, privatize health care, if someone is old and they can’t afford it then they’ll encourage their kin to save and not be stupid. As for military health care that should be rolled into defense budget. America has always been hated and every decade we find ourselves in some different conflict. We should pull out of Iraq, but maintain a strong military if not increase it’s size. North Korea, China, Iran, ect. we will go to war with them eventually so that is an unavoidable reality. We also would need to cut useless organizations such as endowment of the arts, or department of education. Both of these agencies offer nothing valuable and or important and have billions of dollars that could be used to help counter deficit spending if rolled together with savings of cutting medicare and social security.

    Now after we’ve cut those programs, or burning money pits, we need to encourage growth in our economy. This happens when we create jobs, now every says that “…obama should create more jobs!” ect. News flash, the government does NOT create jobs! Private citizens do. Taxing the rich more will actually destroy jobs. After we cut the programs, encourage the economy, then we need to change education as a whole, most teachers have no real world experience and teach out of a text book. You need to teach our kids in school in an AMERICAN identity, not spanish american, african american, ect. We need to repair the cracks in our nation, this in turn will create leaders, real leaders for tomorrow. And lastly we need really strict law enforcement policies that would encourage the idea of, DO NOT FUCK UP OR YOU WILL REGRET IT.

    Hit me up on twitterat Mike__Norkus

    • Toastftk

      this is probably the stupidest comment ive ever read.

    • Darrell Dale

      we the people is on the main document that states tht all men are and should bein charge of our counrty for the people of the people by the people we all are in some sence resonable and acountable for the mess the spending the us goverment has put us the people of the united states in we are the force tht drives this great nation and we are the one who should hold an acount of all spending in the house of our repesentive.

  • the snake


    • Hi

      You just admitted to doing drugs…

  • the snake

    Don’tnedd to raise taxes. Need to get the other half million who aren’t paying them!

    • Cnikkel

      Would you be talking about poor people who should get taxed, or the “greedy rich people” who already, in total tax revenue, pay about 60% of what the government gets from all of us?

  • Phil

    Having run a business that was labor and material intensive, when revenues decreased we cut waste first. Then maintained labor, because it was needed to increase revenue, but we focused on productivity. We actually paid higher wages for more qualified people.

    Material cost other than waste was dictated by revenues. The biggest way we reduced material cost was to reduce inventories to what was actually needed, and count inventory frequently to arrest and prevent theft.

    The problem with government, there are no ground level incentives to cut cost. A good place to start would be the excess waste and spending in the legislative and executive branches.

    I would advocate for less travel, more desktop conferencing. One congressman recently cut his 4 million dollar annual budget in half. If the entire Congress and White house could do that, then they would have the moral right to ask each department to cut their budgets 10-15% without laying off workers.

    I would not hesitate to tackle waste in the military as well, where billions of dollars in equipment either sits idle or is missing altogether. Many military contracts are simply rewarded to districts to garner favors or votes, and have nothing to do with defense.

    Nothing I’ve said here is partisan, do I get any disagreement on that?

    • Cnikkel

      Nice post.

      However, I’m wondering….
      If that politician cut his 4 million dollar deficit in half, so 2 million, where did the other 2 million go? Did it disappear? Did it go towards creating jobs? Did it go towards this “deficit”, or did he give him self a pay cut?

      Several of those things in the list would actually be BAD compared to him just keeping the 4 million and continuing to save and spend it.

  • RevJoyceann Crump


  • Cindi

    Once again, no way to respond and no one is listening

    • Cnikkel

      Because you are NOT a citizen, you DON’T have rights, and there IS nothing you can do against anything bad the gov’t does.
      Good post.

  • Cindi

    Take away all the 15 vacations per year government workers have. I mean really, Colombus Day? Flag Day? Give them the same holidays current businesses give. Look I am a nurse….and Dr’s are ready to give up. C’mon $12 reinbursement for Medicare patients? I am 48…. If SS and Medicare aren’t going to be there when I retire, Stay out of my paycheck! After the babyboomers are finished collecting SS and Medicare, there should be a surplus! My generation paid for it. Then is will even out. It was an agreement…so if it’s not guaranteed now…government can no longer take money out of my pay…period, until it’s figured out. I am sick of trying to figure out how to work and do well in this economy, without worrying about the government taking my money, and being wishy washy on it after the baby boomers pass on. I am thinking of getting a lawyer, to help me block the government from taking money out of my check, because the agreement is obviously now void. Get it straight…..the baby boomers population is huge, I am in the generation supporting them, right behind them. There should be a surplus after they pass. No one talked about that, did they?
    Overworked..and tired nurse. -Cindi

  • Chuckles

    Well we have 50 states and How many Politicans are involved and how much do they get paid?? We should cut politican number in half and make the remaining ones receive 20% less on their paycheck. Add up the number of people in a political office and it is as many people as in the state of proably Florida or Maryland. Wake up America , I paid taxes for over 45 years and now I live on $1,244.00 a month. Oh God Let them try to live on that ammount. Ha! Ha! But no they have to have at least $350,000.00 a year. If I made that I would give half back but WHOA not them . I feel sorry for the rich and politicans some day they will wake up and say “What was I thinking”

  • Mrshyde

    Consider emigrating at some point. No way do working class folks have this kind of $$ to pay off the debt and there aren’t enough rich Americans to tax.

  • Cnikkel

    If we were to cut politicians’ numbers in half (bad idea 1) we would actually, almost legally, have to give them a RAISE, since not only would they be doing the work of 2 people in one, but there WOULD be a financial/economic surplus in that area of government, some of which should and definitely WOULD go to the remaining leaders pay checks.

    Also, government or outsourcing is not the issue with the debt, and this article is false in leading us to believe we owe 80k per family to the government. we already PAID them via taxes, and could even write up a bill or ammendment saying how since they DID not consult us on how to “increase GDP (our economy)” then we also will not bear the brunt of the debt.

    You guys really think these politicians you claim to be so “corrupt” or “greedy” would ruin themselves, their paychecks, and piss off their “customers” while also giving us tax CUTS?

    Come on. The deficit is somewhat of a problem, but we’re all clearly focusing on in the direction which the government is clearly leading us; away from an educated estimate and advance on what the deficit REALLY is.

  • Sexsmechanic

    I would allow the banks and car companies to pay back their bail out ,giving the debt to the rightful benifitters

  • Jado

    This make me so sad! I am only 16 years old and I can see how corrupt our government is, yet many stupid people cannot. You want to know how we are going to pay back the debt? I am going to be the one paying for it! Myself, my children, my grandchildren… I promise you in the next four years NOTHING is getting resolved! This sucks!

  • Republican

    Lets start by deporting all the illegal aliens. That will create jobs! Theoretically speaking, lets say there is this man named Paco and he hears about the United States from his cousin Pedro. So Paco brings his family to the United States from Mexico. They of course come illegally, but it’s ok because Pedro knows this democrat who can give Paco and his family social security numbers. They love it here. Paco’s kids even get free education! The 2012 election comes up and Paco hears that Obama wants to give him free health care! Paco believes that the United States government should pay to take care of him and his family so he votes for Obama. Why should we pay for Paco to live here and spend our resources? I have nothing against Paco, I’m sure he and his family are very nice. There is a reason why US citizens are required to go to high school, so they become educated! Paco and his friends are illiterate and uneducated, and we are letting them decide the fate of out country!!!

    • gfulmore

      My guess is that you voted Republican and saw nothing wrong with their positions on “self-deportation” and the like. Good for you. That is dooming the Republicons…and you don’t even see it. Good for you. Viva Obama. He and we are moving forward!

      • Samantha

        Moving forward right off the cliff. If you want to take care of illegal aliens for the rest of your life then good for you. Start a charity or something. My hard earned money shouldn’t pay for people who are too lazy to take care of themselves.

        • Darrell Dale

          and who are you to decide who dose or dose not desever their part of american dream people who old or who can no longer work are the ones tht made there tribute as younger or as part of the miltarty or the work force tht help build our great country . god first people forget were our fathers and country put there trust.

    • BroncoMan24

      I completely agree. I am not racist and will welcome into our country anyone that wants to be a citizen. I have no sympathy for anyone that wants to come in our country and mooch off of us and not pay taxes. It is simple. They either need to become a citizen or leave. I cannot fathom why everyone is not on board with this. Even as an illegal alien. How can you live with yourselves? I would feel less than a person, if I wasn’t trying to do my part for the country that provides you with all the opportunities that you country doesn’t allow.

  • gfulmore

    Someone needs to end the illusion that the “entitlements” are driving the deficit and debt. Not true. It is the military-security-industrial complex that is doing that. It has no income source. All its expenses — as much as $1.3 trillion per year if you really count it all up properly — must be paid for by income taxes received. But we come up short every year by about $1.3 trillion in our revenue; thus, we really borrow all the money required by our military-security-industial complex each year. In contrast, Social Security is paid for each year because of its payroll tax income and the interest due on its $2.7 trillion Trust Fund. Medicare costs about $350 billion each year, far less than the military-security-industrial complex. Someone needs to end the illusion that “entitlements” are driving the deficit and debt.

  • CaroleAnn

    We don’t really need to have 800 military bases in 130 nations around the world. We spend more on our military than nearly all the rest of the world put together. Military spending is bankrupting us.

    Another big cost is corporate welfare, which is almost twice the size of the total cost of all entitlement and spending on social programs.

    Those are the areas we should cut first.

    • Samantha

      And we run the world. No one wages war on us because they know we’re prepared and are the best. If you want to be a part of a weak country with a crappy department of defense, MOVE.

      • Dunkel

        Your military cant eat dust and fire with air. If Americans dont want to pay the taxes it needs to get rid of the problem, the next generation of Americans will have a very hard time. Your only delaying a possible bankrupcy, if you dont do something soon. China is the new leader. All Hail the Red Giant to the East :P

      • cohones

        Dude people like your thinking is what’s allowing China to takeover without firing a bullet,these people will continue buying our land and companies after all they don’t blow their money on military,dude we got more carriers than the world combined and still building,we are already doomed because of people like you.

        • cohones

          Another thing there are a lot of countries with hardly no military and nobody messes with them,it is us messing with other countries.

  • Paintpale

    tax churches and non profit organizations. Do the catholic (for instance) need that much pretty, pretty gold laying around? Hmmmm…..

  • Axxan3

    Free spending cost across the board tax of 20 per cent
    bring in a war tax to pay for the Bush wars
    and nex tax to pay for Bush Medicar drug program
    or do a way with the program
    put Social security and medcare in to non budger programs
    it would become pay as you go self fundimg program
    restore money from surplus used to buy US bonds
    2nd year go to a no deuction short form
    and make all depts justify their spending
    military cuts
    3rd year dis band some departments
    and transfer some of the jobs back to states

  • Jake Hansen

    First, we need to vote in people who don’t simply toe the party line and who are pragmatic. That’s hard because there are so many people who blindly vote for one party or the other without ever taking time to find out what and whom they’re voting for. For example, when talking about the military-industrial complex, you’re talking about huge contracts that the defense contractors purposely spread out across several states. These employ people at good salaries or hourly rates. So, Reps and Senators typically don’t want to vote against something that will take away jobs in their district/state. So, if we vote in people who are pragmatic, people who take the time to find out what DoD leaders are actually asking for (there have been weapon systems that the military said they don’t want or need that Congress voted to continue to fund in case you didn’t know) and then they can tell their constituents that they are going to vote pragmatically and that may mean the loss of jobs.

    We, the American people, need to bite the bullet to accept these types of things. Also, I don’t want to do it, because it would probably screw myself, but we should do means testing for people when they reach SS age and Medicare. For example, if a person is 65 years old and they have retirement accounts worth $3 million, they should have their SS payments deferred until they reach 75. Yeah, they paid into it for decades, but these are the types of hard things we need to do.

    And yes, I do think religious organizations should pay some sort of tax.

  • Hvactinknocker

    1st we as a people must stop pointing the finger at are past leaders .and start being leader to are selfs cut taxes all and i mean all pay the same tax rate . we need to start a lottery just for cutting are det and only are det winner get tax free life make go off every 2 week andin time we well overcome god bless my america brothers/sisters.let all stop the bull but grabe it by the horns and get it done let fix it

  • lauren kels

    What I’m wondering is why cant we even out the money with other countries. Other countries owe us money and we owe them. So why can’t We work something out with other countries where they give us money and pay us back then we do the same for them once we have been paid back. I don’t know. I’m surely not an economist but its a thought.

  • BroncoMan24

    Other options would be to cut benefits for the government (giving them free benefits for life is crazy) or military benefits after they serve their 20. I know that they fight for our country and I appreciate that, but with the exception of someone that has been wounded they should not receive these benefits (retirement pay) until after the age 65. Most are capable of getting a job after they retire (as I am sure they do). I know a lot of people will disagree with me, but the bottom line is we are in serious debt and we need to make serious cuts to get out of this if possible. Whether people like it or not it needs to be done. People will need to make sacrifices. I am also for paying additional taxes (within reason) if it will help and no I do not make a 100k+/yr.

    • Darrell Dale

      comunist popaganda miltary men and woman fight for right to run your mouth cut need to start from the cammander chief down not poor man who is do his duty to god and country.

  • what the hells going on

    First my father worked in the ship yard and he and his friends would talk about the mass spending and waste.Second there is money for say watching a shrimp run on a tredmill,that cost 100,0000 a year along with other bogas spending.When it became public the govt spent millions to investigate and said the investigation was inconclusive.I really like the legalization of the govt selling marijuana.Its free and can bring us out of debt.The govt seems to spend a lot more on say a tool than any one else would have to pay for the same item.And stop all this stupid researce on like do birds sweat.

  • what the hells going on

    Does Any one believe that a lot of congress are actually bankers,Employees of the pharmeuctical companies,Congressman getting Payouts to bend the country over.Thats what the problem is

  • Todd

    I strongly believe we the United States need to stop and revisit our founding principles. We need to look at the books and see what needs to continue with funding and what needs to stop. We used to be a country of standards, but that has falling of the table. I understand there are a lot of persons that want and want. Well I say to those persons the time has come to become your own individual and support yourself. People have made choices that can’t be reversed, but we can all learn from each other and instill those core values and standards back into our children. I believe this will help the future generation and lay the foundation for the next generation.

    • cohones

      Couldn’t agree with you more,problem with your line of thought is your going to be labeled something,progressives like Obama want us to get beyond the Constitution they think it’s racist and outdated,therein lives the problem.

  • joshuagenes

    5 trillion of the debt is money the government owes itself and can be wiped out with the stroke of a pen by congress that leaves about 12.25 trillion left. If we divide that by the 2.3 trillion in revenues the fed receives every year we get $5.33 of debt for every dollar of paid in taxes. Now all we have to do is convert public debt to private debt using a financial instrument that represents debt paid off. The dollar amount gets carried over year to year and the financial instrument is tradable making the converted debt and payments on the debt adjust to changing tax burden. New deficit are split out the same way and will feel like a tax increase to those that have paid off debt relative to their taxes. These investors are wealthy and the same people who contribute to campaigns they will then hold the government accountable for living within it’s means.

  • joe

    The author makes an important point, and it is that “the big problem with fixing the debt crisis is that the majority of Americans do not want to eliminate certain spending programs or pay higher taxes.” The same goes for congressman and senators, and I think both sides of the aisle have valid points. But I can’t see any compromise getting done in the Congress. I think I have the only real solution, and that is to print money to cover the budget deficits. I know you immediately think of inflation, but I think there are ways to curtail it.

    One way would be to try to get to a point where taxes can be raised, but so that would have zero effect on the economy because more money has been injected. I just feel like government should be a leader, monetarily, and not be a slave to debt. There has obviously been a greater demand for government services over the past 60 years than what can be provided for from just plain taxation. And that’s where I think government needs to be the one in control of that, instead of leading us on these partisan, sequester tailspins. And that’s the gist of it. It’s pretty simply once you can wrap your head around the idea.

  • Dean

    why not run a raffle like the lottery? two dollar tickets for a new home in any state of the winners choosing all proceeds go towards the defecate. once a week or every other week.

    • Falconum

      A lottery is the best solution lets say you have a lottery like the powerball for all 52 states of course it would be a diffrent name cash prizes for the powerball have exceeded 300 million more then once and thats for like 10 states so 52 states with the same lottery the cash prizes would be 10 times that so taking half going towards the deficiat would reduce it at a verry fast pace and wipe it completely out in no time at all and would also help the economy because of the winners spending money that goes back into the economy this is a verry simple solutiont to our problem and verry simple to get going it can be started as fast as next week and I beleve in a few years the deficit would be completely paid off

      • ahal

        I like it.

  • Juan Guillermo Gamez

    what about marihuana legalization?

  • Pauline

    In reality, our current policy supports this debt-based nation. We will never be able to get rid of national debt unless there is radical changes from all of Americans.

    Andrew Jackson was the only president had paid off our national debt and killed off the national bank temporarily. Congress needs to gain back the control from Federal Reserve Bank. Even a member of the Fed, W.P. G. Harding admitted before Congress that the Fed is an institution owned by the stockholding member banks. The government has not a dollar’s worth of stock in it.

    The principal stockholders of the Fed Res. system:

    1. Rothschild Bank of England, 2. Rothschild Bank of Berlin, 3. Lazard Brothers Banks of Paris, 4. Israel Moses Seiff Banks of Italy, 5. Warburg Banks of Hamburg and Amsterdam, 6. Lehman Brothers Bank of NY,7. Kuhn, Loeb Bank of NY, 8. Chase Manhattan Bank of NY, 9. Goldman, Sachs Bank of NY.

    THE FACT IS THE CONSTITUTION FORBIDS IT’S EXISTENCE. Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution states that Congress shall have the power to create money and regulate the value thereof, NOT A BUNCH OF INTERNATIONAL BANKERS! Today the FED controls and profits by printing WORTHLESS PAPER, called money, through the Treasury, regulating its value, AND THE BIGGEST OUTRAGE OF ALL, COLLECTING INTEREST ON IT! (THE SO-CALLED NATIONAL DEBT).

    Here are the things that we should demand:

    1) Congress should allow the full audit on Federal Reserve Bank with compete transparency.

    2) Fractional Reserve Banking System should be abolished.

    3) Government’s borrowing fund should not be charged interest. Why should we bail out the banks at no interest/cost to the Fed but yet, Fed charges congress interest for just printing the money (Federal Reserve Note) out of thin air.

    If we could look back the history, President Lincoln refused to borrow money at 24%-36% from the money changers (bank) so congress passed the bill printing $450 million with green ink (Green Bag) without any interest to finance the war. According to President Lincoln, “The taxpayers will be saved immense sums of interest, discounts and exchanges. The financing of all public enterprises, the maintenance of stable government and ordered progress, and the conduct of the Treasury will become matters of practical administration. The people can and will be furnished with a currency as safe as their own government. Money will cease to be the master and become the servant of humanity. Democracy will rise superior to the money power.” His creative financial policy could be better off for us than the Fed’s policy. Unfortunately, Lincoln was killed and so was the bill.

    More money the Fed can print out of thin air, it will contribute the inflation in US. If we continue supporting the debt-based policy, we and our next generation will keep paying the never ending national debt.

    According to our founding father, Thomas Jefferson 1816 . . .

    “If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation and then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around them will deprive the people of all property until their children wake up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered.”

    4) Government must focus on our internal economic affairs that benefit our Americans such as rebuilt crumbling infrastructure from cast to coast. Instead, US government continues borrowing money to support other extremists to fight wars in the middle east, spent $791 billion on Homeland Security since 9/11. According FAIR, based on the current illegal aliens population (11 or 12 million), it costs $100 billion per year for illegal immigrants and their US born children.

    5) Immigration laws must be strictly enforced to stop the current influx of illegal aliens from getting worse.

    Right now, we have the influx of illegal immigrants that being escorted by plane or bus to any where they want in US at our tax dollars. Patrols are too busy busing them and dumping them into different cities, borders are not guarded. We make no economic sense to support illegals when our government owes $17 trillions+ debt and cannot take care of our own people. I don’t see Switzerland spending its people tax dollars to take care of illegal residents.

    6) We all need to wake up and get educated to know what’s going on in America instead of watching mainstream media (the fake news)! It is up to Americans if they want to change.

  • Mark

    Last in, First out: Sell Hawaii, allow all US citizens there to move into the millions of foreclosed homes. This will add jobs in the housing sector, as well as the transportation sector. Next, sell Alaska and do the same. Now we have a paid in full deficit. At that point, do away with the Federal Reserve, and keep our own checks & balances. Every state will gain with this strategic move. Both locations are far enough away as not to impose a threat to the continental US 48. Emanate Domain. Remember, these regions were bought by us when your parents were young. We as a nation are overextended. Pay the bill, and dismantle the Federal Reserve once and for all.

  • ahal

    The first thing I would do is cut the biggest spender down, the people that are paid to run this country. Politicians have done nothing but continue to send our jobs over seas, pocket money, steal from the many Americans that have built this country, they lie to us while they are selling whatever resources we have to whoever has the highest bid. I say that we as the American people start a legislation that puts a cap on how much Politicians can make, how long there terms are, and they also need there bank accounts and funds looked into to make sure they are not playing hanky panky with America’s dollars. All of America’s politicians need this to happen. The second places I would cut the spending is on the expensive meetings and luxurious hotels. I think that if you are a senator it is your job to get places. I think that basic arrangements should be provided like airfare and hotel. I don’t think that they should be able to stay in a $300 to $5000 luxurious hotel, and have first class airfare on tax dollars. I don’t think that meals should cost anymore than $10. The people running this country are trying to live like movie stars and America is broke. We don’t have the money for a Politician to live like a movie star. In order to do this I would send a team of people to analyze how much a Politician makes and how much they’d need for expenses. I would guarantee that I would cut all of there wages at least by 10% if not more. I would cut back on the making money because you were a political leader and you are no longer one for life deal. We can’t afford to pay people money for the rest of there life. Look at Obama, George W. Bush, George Bush, Clinton, and Reagen. I believe they are all alive. Five Presidents who will continue to make $400,000 per year and are doing nothing. That’s 2 Million in funds we could easily spend on our soldiers or Food Stamps. Why should we continue to make lying politicians comfortable with all of our tax dollars? I’d take all that money I would have saved and put it towards paying off the National Debt. I’d also put a 4% luxury tax on everything except for basic necessities to help pay off the National Debt.

  • ahal

    I’d also invest in cities like Detroit, New York City, and Chicago to get kids on career paths instead of criminal paths, I’d invest in police, fire, and health and safety programs. I’d try to get opportunities like an old apartment building that is a city eye sore turned into a shelter with retraining plans.

  • Alejandro Moreno

    In my opinion, we should simplify tax law and reduce corporate taxes to promote companies from leaving the US and going to more tax friendly countries like Ireland (15% Corporate Tax). This will create jobs and increase revenue in the long run. Secondly, I would work with Healthcare Providers, Health Insurance and Drug Companies to create policies that reduce Healthcare spending. We have too much Government Regulation and excessive lawsuits for healthcare malpractice that is only putting more money into lawyer’s pockets and making healthcare more expensive for everyone.

    • LuizSantos

      The problem is not taxing, actually, it is the lack of it. You could simply raise import taxation. Also, the money creations system, it should be taken out of private bankers hand as FED is private, not public!

      But I guess the US and most advanced countries will either have a hyper inflation or declare a default as a group of countries, so speculators, ops… bankers, will have no where to run.

      • jesse

        Actually your wrong, increasing taxes stunts growth. Simple economics.

  • Bill

    We can’t seem to cut off all the big money contributions to politics, how about, for every dollar contributed they have to match that with a dollar to reduce the debt.
    A step in the right direction?

  • john

    legalize industrial hemp. Only reason it’s illegal is because paper and cotton industries would take a hit from this new industrial product that is so much better. Of course politicians with their own personal interests in mind would never legalize such a great industrial product that may effect their stocks in paper and cotton. oh well go USA fucking tools

  • WiderEyes

    Start at the flawed foundation, fiat currency first, then reduce dependency on federal redistribution of private sector productivity. This wont happen because we actually put the parasites in charge of us. We need good government and sound money based on something more finite than a banker’s desires.

  • X7ChAT

    National Debt Problem & Solution 12 Trillion (291378846719). I found a link a friend of mine posted that he bought on ebay. The price has gone up since then but it actually solved the problem of the National Debt crisis, It was basic math. I was true also when I read it. 100% legit.

  • Javier Antonio Guzman

    We could raise 1 trillion annually if we simple erradicated the insurance system that bleeds out our gross domestic product every year. Our insurance system and I mean all insurance grosses 1.24 trillion dollars per year and only pays out 200 billion in claims per year. Cover all insurance pay outs and we get out of debt in 17 years. Let see if we as a society have the balls to do it. The only we have to fear is fear itself!

  • jesse

    This article needs to be updated

  • Minnie Mouse

    1st I would make everyone pay into Medicaid and Medicare, regardless of income and even if it’s only 1%. 1% is better than no percent at all.These are programs that benefit everyone, at one point in life. I would require home assessments for all low income households who are applying for state and federal aide and set specific programs up as a needs basis only. There would be no online applications and no over the phone applications. Each applicant will receive a 60-120 day appointment out in order for the home assessment to be done. The assessment is to verify that the people who are living in the household listed on the application are actually living in the house hold, verify all income, and all household bill responsibilities of what the person or people have as outgoing bills, versus what is the incoming income. This is to determine if a person actually truly needs assistance, or needs to be working more hours, or change bills status to bring in more income in the household. (By means of changing cell phone services, cable, internet ect.. anything to reduce out going bills) The visit would help the family in ways to bring in more income to where they are not self relying on state and government assistance and would reduce fraud, abuse and place people in the programs who truly do need assistance.
    I would change the snap program to where they can purchase healthy food items only will not be accepted at gas stations, bars, restaurants or fast food places. The snap cards would be set up as a credit card with a specific set limit allotted by the Department of Human Services. The card will never be able to go over the set allotted limit at any given time. A person who has a limit of $300 and only spends $100 in January, will not receive another $300 in February because they have $200 left from January. The February payment would be for $100 only. No one will receive the allotted limit until he or she spends the entire full balance in the previous amount. If no funds have been spent in 3 months, the person will be removed from the program. This is to determine who needs help and who does not and keep the state and government from handing out funds of more than a person actually needs in a month by not allowing people to stack unspent funds onto the snap debit card for months and months at a time.

  • John Robenault

    Americans should be encouraged to be independent. Every product created in America is one that won’t have be bought from another country. Support local businesses. Learn to sewing, woodworking, cooking or anything else you can think of. Start growing some of your own food. Maybe you don’t want to live on a farm, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have a small vegetable garden or fruit tree in the backyard. Every bit helps.

  • Melody Szabo

    Return to the tax rates of the 1950s. End all trade agreements and increase tariffs on imported goods. Demand that goods sold in the USA also be made there. Increase wages so that Americans have the money to buy goods and keep the economy in motion. This is largely the way it was in the 50s and 60s, despite the fact that the major economic activity was military weapons due to the cold war, but we have other problems today: a looming energy crisis, the need for automation to provide robots in the work place to solve the demographic crunch, and of course looming resource shortages. Trying to trade with savage third world dicatorships or competing with nations who pay their people $1 a day will only turn the USA into one of these savage dictatorships. Look at American politics since the 60s, it looks a lot like some of those savage dictatorships, and indeed the amount of corporate corruption and influence in government is astounding.

  • joshuagenes

    The easiest way to wipe out America’s debt is to create trillions of dollars worth of real wealth. We can do this by improving the currency and finance system. The currency we have now is mostly debt based fractional reserve currency by transitioning to a share based currency that is backed by all goods and services in the market we improve the value of the most widely traded product in the market and it is worth trillions. We also need to move the finance system from debt based financing to non-lending financing like joint investment. What this does is help us to avoid the massive hidden costs of debt that are not reflected in the price. Debt is lent out based on collateral and the borrower perceived ability to pay into the future. It is not lent out based on the quality of the underlying investment and this means that much is invested in non-performing assets, businesses, people, and ideas. By moving to joint investment we shift the focus onto the maintenance and creation of real wealth and this alone will grow the economy at a much faster rate and make everyone wealthier. Other hidden costs of debt include amplified business cycles, higher rate of business failure, failed relationships, divorce, suicide, health and medical problems, stress, over-interconnectedness of businesses causing chain reaction failure otherwise known as debt chains and debt loops, and many more. By moving everyone to non-lending financing we will make it easier to pay of the debts we have and not acquire debt in the first place while still being able to finance the things that grow our economy.

    How we do it
    We can complete this reform by simply increasing the federal reserve requirement on lending thus shrinking the fractional reserve currency while at the same time creating currency out of thin air and introducing it into the market via the purchase and cancellation of government debt.. This will be a slow transition from a fractional reserve currency through a full reserve currency before finally arriving at a debt free share based currency. The federal reserve bank currently own $4 trillion which can be cancelled now and about $11 trillion in fractional reserve currency that would need to be converted wiping out $11 trillion in debt. With grow, time, and the increased value of the currency we can both wipe out the debt and become much wealthier at the same time.

  • Jose De Varona Jr.

    im 15, but I would stop food stamps, disability checks, and some other things. I would use most of the tax dollars to pay it. Slowly. Idk why the president and politicians dont talk about national debt… I think that is single-handedly the most important thing for this country to survive and live on and be the best country. For it to be the country everybody wants to live in; and have it actually be liveable.

  • Peeta Mellark

    cut 1% from every part of the budget for 5 consecutive years. Budget would be balanced and the debt would start to be paid off. Personally I think that plan is weaksauce and would cut 10% for 10 years but who am I.

  • JRS

    Cut the number of military bases around the world.

  • Wynne

    Solution to National Debt, Medicare and Social Security

    A national lottery, where the winning ticket holders receive half of the weekly receipts free of Federal tax.
    The other half goes toward the National debt for the first 4 years and beginning with year 5 is split 3 ways between the debt, Social Security and Medicare.
    There would be 5 independent CPA firms auditing the process with substantial compensation for any irregularities discovered and substantial penalties (criminal) for those responsible for irregularities. There would be 2 independent CPA firms auditing each of the 5 primary CPA firms with the same compensation and penalty criteria.
    Tickets would be available world wide, not just in the USA.
    Result from the audits to be presented on CSPAN

  • SuperTroll

    They should scrap income taxes and replace it with something like a sales tax or value added tax. If nothing else it would eliminate the need for all of us to file tax returns. And get rid of state income taxes, too.