I've been reading a lot about the proposal issued by the chairmen of the Debt Commission. Here's a roundup by Jake Tapper.
I was somewhat pleasantly surprised that the proposal isn't 100% tax increases. Unfortunately there are some pretty substantial tax increases in there. I like the idea of broadening the tax base, because I think it's dangerous that a near-majority of citizens pay zero or less in federal taxes. I like the proposed reduction in the federal workforce, the sale of federal land, the freezing of federal pay, the lowering of the tax brackets, and several other reforms.
However, I'm extremely wary of accepting tax increases now in exchange for "peanut butter" spending cuts that are spread thinly across so many areas. I'd much prefer to see 100% cuts to isolated government functions than a few percent shaved off everywhere. Why? Because it's much easier to restore those few percent later than it would be to reincarnate a whole department once it is eliminated. It just seems to me that tax increases stick around forever, but spending cuts never actually get implemented.
The British government this past week announced the steepest set of spending cuts in decades, vowing to slash department budgets by close to 20 percent and eliminate a half-million public sector jobs -- all in the name of closing the country's stubborn deficit.
The sweeping proposal has given way to bickering in London, but it already has observers on this side of the pond wondering, what if?
Thanks for the link from 24th State! However, I'm not keen on my views being categorized as "extremism" even when the term is used in a positive sense.