The election is over and  the House of Representatives is gearing up to usher in great reforms.  However, very few specifics have been given as to how to cut spending.  What does this mean?  What will be cut?  Will there be huge cuts in social security?  Medicare?  Medicaid?  Talk has been made of cuts coming from the general funds.  Specifically where would these cuts start?

It will take a long time to implement cuts, even longer if we don’t know what they are.  Apparently the mandage was only in the House of Representatives.  How are they going to implement the people’s mandate when that mandate didn’t go through the Senate?  The ball is now in the Republican’s court, at least in the House.  The American people want to know specific plans.

If the Republicans need a little time to get these promises into a plan, then when can we expect to see the plan?  Would 2 months be a fair expectation? 

This all has to go beyond sound bytes now.  All those who ran and won need to spell it out.  Where do they recommend the spending to stop? 

32 Thoughts to “Cut Spending–Long on Promise, Short of Specifics”

  1. e

    eliminate: social security, medicare, medicaid, welfare, food stamps, section 8 housing, department of education, food stamps, the irs, the list goes on.
    get rid of the progressive tax code, where people are penalized for their hard work. institute a flat tax, where everyone pays the same, oh i dont know 15% tax on all products and services.
    stop printing money. start drilling for oil, offshore and onshore. anwar included. start building new nuclear power plants. ditto new oil refineries. france gets 80% of its energy from nuclear, it’s inexcusable that the u.s. has to import oil. rein in the out of control enviromentalists.
    break up the teachers unions. throw the rico statute at them. cut the government workforce at all levels.
    get rid of cafe standards. let automakers build whatever the market demands.
    enforce the immigration laws. stop the anarchy at the borders. convicted jihadis get tried and shot. no more 5 star treatment at club gitmo.
    He who does not work, will not eat (john smith, 1608)

  2. Elena

    Yeah, lets go back to pre WWII standards! Screw all those starving kids! Let big fat cat bankers make the rules, they did a fabulous job policing themselves! Let big companies pollute and dump toxic waste into the water we drink from, let oil companies forgoe regulations and drill baby drill like the Horizon in Louisianna! Who the hell needs government anyway, each man for himself!

  3. Why do I think that no one ran on e’s ticket?

    e, you are a party of one. Even Tammy Faye Tan-Man wouldn’t put up with that. Would you take away everyone’s pensions also?

  4. Pat.Herve

    e – you make it sound so easy.

    Just one thing – I paid into SS and Medicaid – you cannot just take it away from those that paid into it. There are no funds to buy us out.

    Tax Code – yes, another area of reform that we need – all that our politicians have done is create a monster with more loop holes than swiss cheese. And as far as the progressive tax code – even Warren Buffett agrees – he pays an effective tax rate of 17.7% – well below my rates – – even he says he should be paying more, and I would like to believe that Mr Buffett doesn’t even try to use all the loop holes he could.

    You can review the legislation that did not happen in the “Do Nothing” 109th Congress – 2005-2006 (the do nothing are not my words).

    WE have serious issues that need serious consideration and thinking – at least Obama is trying to do something, while the R’s one priority is to make him a one term President. Imagine the rhetoric that McConnell says in private if he says this in public.

  5. All sorts of congresses have had plenty of time to work on the tax code. It has not happened.

    Not sure what that link was supposed to give me.

  6. marinm

    Did the clock start today or are we waiting for the lame duck session to finish off before we start seeing plans and ideas come out?

    To E’s point; we do have to get used to less services. That’s just the deal. We might not get to eliminate everything for a libertarian paradise but if we can make good inroads and effect real change… We build ourselves a good foundation to make sensible cuts and refinements for the next 20-40 years.

  7. @Pat.Herve
    Of course he uses the tax loopholes. He loves the estate tax because that’s how he buys businesses on the cheap.

    Putting anchors on a drowning man is also “doing something.” Obama is not helping.

    Flat tax or sales tax. As for paying into Social Security…..oh well. I don’t expect to get it back. Its a tax. The Feds use it like one and pay SS back out of the general fund. They can stop at any time. Privatize SS by setting up individual accounts and buying T-bills with it. Inheritable accounts.

    e is actually right, except those are long term goals. Currently, I’d be happy if we just repealed the stimulus bills. Put the unspent money towards the deficit.

    The bankers are running the show now. THEY are the ones with political connections.
    Many of the environmentalists ARE out of control. Even when companies comply with all of the rules, the same enviros that wrote those rules sue to stop development. Its too expensive to build new power plants. And we need them. We need more domestic sources of energy.

    Nothing in e’s post said to forego regulations. BP was able to get away with sloppy work BECAUSE they were in tight with the government. If we had more domestic sources of energy, the influence of each company would be decreased. We need more nuclear power, gas, oil, wind, water, etc. Get it all going, if the sources are feasible or will be feasible.

    Government control is not always the best control, especially federal control. Nor is it Constitutional. Nothing prevents the states from having different forms of welfare.

    Here are some great ideas:

    Here’s one with more detail:


  8. Formerly Anonymous

    How about we have a vote on the debt commission’s recommendations as a single package? No picking and choosing. All the tax hikes and all the spending cuts in one package.

    And why are Republicans the only ones responsible for identifying cuts? Shouldn’t the Democratic majority in the Senate have a role too? Or do Democrats get a pass because they have been ignoring the problem lately?

    The last time the GOP tried to cut spending they got bushwacked for trying to “kill Big Bird” “close national parks” and my personal favorite from Rep. Nadler, “kill old people to give a tax cut to the trillionaries”. What a shock that are selling the sizzle instead of the steak first this time.

    Lastly, the President completely passed on the debt issue for two years by setting up the debt commission. We’ve added more than $2 trillion in debt while we wait for them to report. Why don’t you want to hold Obama’s feet to the fire? He campaigned on cutting the deficit in half by the end of 2012. It’s been two years, where are his specifics?

  9. e

    all ponzi schemes invariably crash sooner or later. merely delaying the day of reckoning will make it all that much worse. your private pensions and 401k will be seized by the government to bail out bankrupt california new york and the public sector union pensions. socialism fails when it runs out of other people’s money to steal. (or as mark steyn quipped when discussing europe’s demographic demise, socialism fails when it runs out of people)

  10. The clock started today. (actually Wednesday) Those who knew all the answers could certainly at least say generally what they plan to do and start putting their agenda together. Times awasting….

  11. Elena

    There are not black and white answers. The TEA partiers and Republicans will never repeal the “stimulus” Bush tax cuts. Once again, I will repeat, TAX CUTS DO NOT PAY FOR THEMSELVES. If you do not allow some portion of that stimulus tax to sunset, it will cost BILLIONS. So now, how will the new kids in town, pay for, not only the tax cuts, but the other deficit items WITHOUT cutting jobs!

  12. They don’t have all the answers, but I probably can’t get elected…….. 🙂

  13. FA said:

    And why are Republicans the only ones responsible for identifying cuts? Shouldn’t the Democratic majority in the Senate have a role too?

    Because the Republicans and Tea Party all ran on spending cuts and knew all the answers. They made fun of any spending cuts proposed by the President or Congress. They feel they have a mandate in the House so have at it. We are waiting.

    The Republicans want to balance a budget and give tax cuts to everyone. They want to protect the upper 1%. Interesting. I wonder what tax bracket most of them fall in to.

    At least do it the Reagan way and sneak in the taxes raised on the middle class. (credit card and car loan interest going bye bye seem to come to mind.)

  14. marinm

    I don’t understand why there is so much anger from our friends here on the left. For all this talk of wanting rule by centrists you would think that they would be happy that the People rejected rule by the extreme left and we’d move closer to the center…

    For those with -elect behing their name — they can’t just make themselves a Office of the Representative-elect, hire a transition team, and get ‘working’ on things. Those -Rs and -Ds that were defeated still have those jobs for a few months.

    Let’s be somewhat realistic here and not put the cart before the horse.

    And, not every spending cut will work out or pass. It’s going to take debate, discussion and compromise. We don’t have a rubberstamp Congress anymore – these guys – all of them – will have to actually work for a living now.

  15. “They made fun of any spending cuts proposed by the President or Congress.”

    Because those cuts were false. Because they lied. Adding 1 trillion dollars to the deficit while paying lip service to spending cuts shows that they were not serious.

    How about a 5% across the board spending cut? Not a reduction in increase. A cut from last year’s spending. Everyone gets cut, including entitlements.

  16. “NEW YORK (TheStreet) — Rep. Ron Paul (R., Texas), who wants to abolish the Federal Reserve, could end up overseeing it as part of the Republican takeover of the House of Representatives.

    Paul is the ranking member of the Subcommittee on Domestic Monetary Policy and Technology on the House Financial Services Committee, which has oversight for the Fed, the U.S. Mint and U.S. interaction with the World Bank,…”

    BWHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!! This should be interesting……

  17. marinm

    Cargo, you just made my day.

    Wow. The Republic has a fighting chance with Dr. Paul at the helm. I’m tickled pink. 🙂 🙂 🙂

  18. Mom

    Cargo, e and Marinm:

    As fellow Republicans/Conservatives, you’re in the ballpark regarding where the cuts should start but it will take someone with a real big set to actually suggest the “real” cuts that need to be made for long-term fiscal stability and reductions in spending.

    First place to go is the USDA and cut/eliminate the rural radio and rural broadband inititatives, then go down the hall and gut the crop subsidies (cue screaming lobbyists from Monsanto and vastly reduced campaign contributions from corporate America to many fat cat GOPers). Those cuts have the added benefit of eliminating several hundred FTE from USDA’s rolls and forcing large agricultural entities to make better use of their holdings thus requiring the hiring of more employees, sort of reverse stimulus plan.

    Next we head over to Commerce and whack most of their initiatives aimed at “educating” the rest of the world about commerce and IP, start with the Office of the Trade Representative and GIPA over at the PTO.

    While we’re downtown we stop in at the IRS, replace 80% of the staff with a computer that can automatically deduct and collect a flat percentage from everybody’s paychecks, the audit process doesn’t really pay for itself.

    Then we drive over the bridge and stop at the Pentagon, get a list from the Joint Chiefs of all the useless or unwanted crap we’re buying to keep some Congressman’s district happy and we lop that off the defense budget.

    Once that’s done we gather the President, Secretary of State and Senate leadership together and inform them that foreign aid will be cut by 80% (and yes that includes money to Israel).

    Once those big-ticket items are eliminating we can start playing at the margins by slicing and dicing over at Education, Labor, etc. followed by a round of silo-smashing and consolidation at Homeland.

    Should be able to do that in a day, but I doubt anyone has the stones to put any one of those in their campaign platform with the actual intent of following through.

    1. @Mom and to all,

      At least MoM is the first person I have actually seen come up with a real starting place. I don’t necessarily agree or disagree with him…but he has some ideas that he verbalized well.

      I personally could do some serious damage at the Dept. of Ed. It would become an agency. I might have to linger at the pentagon for a while also and go after some generals’ perks.

  19. marinm

    Mom, I don’t disagree and echo that some defense cuts are needed (ref. UK Navy mothballing a good portion of their fleet and ‘outsourcing navel power to the US).

    We just can’t afford to be everything for everyone.

  20. Mom

    The corollary to that is “We can afford to be nothing to some”, France comes to mind.

  21. marinm

    MH, what about Mr. Paul Ryan’s plan? I know the left loves to smear him on TV but the man has some interesting idears..

    1. @marin

      don’t know. I stopped listening to him over social security.

  22. Mom


    RE: causing damage at Ed.

    “Every normal man must be tempted at times to spit upon his hands, hoist the black flag, and start slitting throats”

    -H.L. Menken

  23. e

    TAX CUTS PAY FOR THEMSELVES. all money belongs to the people before govment steals it. lets get out of the mentality that so many democrats have, namely, that all money is govment’s, and after govment spends what it deems necessary on social engineering and redistribution schemes etc, it will deign to give some of it to the peasants for pocket change.
    govment itself produces nothing, and the less of it the better off we’ll be. i look forward to two years of gridlock; the less gets done in d.c. the better off the country will be

  24. @MoM…ahhhh…slitting throats…..

  25. @e

    And watch the govt help themselves to that money that is yours if for some reason you haven’t paid what they feel you owe.

    I would prefer to move past idealism to the practical….what do we do about making sure our economy is secure so people have jobs, economic security, and can basically sleep at night?

    To all…don’t watch Glenn Beck. He is in to end times with the failure of the monetary system. Then he moved on to televangelism. I felt that the entire program was irresponsible. It was very frightening if you put any stock in what Beck spews.

  26. Mom

    So you want practical, that too is easy, again if one has the stones to push for re-alllocation of certain funds to more practical realistic purposes.

    You can start by taking all of the Federal funds allocated to dozens of high speed rail projects throughout the country and re-allocating them to the repair of our crumbling highway infrastructure. High speed rail is a scam that will never reach the inflated ridership its proponents claim and costs many times more per passenger mile than our current road system. We should fix what we already have and can’t afford to maintain before embarking on new projects that amount to little more than fools errands.

    Next reallocate funding and FTE in many Federal agencies to support industry, economy and entrepreneurship, take it from all the GD policy initiatives aimed at foreign countries particularly the Pacific Rim. I can tell you from first hand experience that many businesses, from Mom & Pop operations to Multi-Nationals are suffering at the hands of our current bureaucracy as they wait for Federal approval of documents required to further their business. Everything from food/beverage labeling, to drug testing, to patent grants, etc., etc., etc. lie in oft times massive backlogs as those charged with processing them are hindered by (in no particular order) 1. understaffing, 2. incompetence, 3. incompetent management, 4. superfluous bureaucratic requirements, 5. over-regulation, 6. needless “training” requirements, 7. details to useless “priority” projects, (I can go on all night if anyone is interested)

    In order to correct these issues, one not only has to “slit the throats” of some on the Hill but also several layers of entrenched DC bureaucracy.

  27. Have you suggested these things to your congressman?

    The backlog sounds like our immigration process.

  28. Formerly Anonymous

    Moon-howler :
    @Mom and to all,
    At least MoM is the first person I have actually seen come up with a real starting place. I don’t necessarily agree or disagree with him…but he has some ideas that he verbalized well.

    Not to take away from Mom’s suggestions, but I posted my list back in April and again a month ago. I believe your only comment the second time I posted it was that it was “monstrous”. I’m not sure if that means that the cuts themselves or the magnitude of what is needed. But my list was most definitely a starting place, and while Mom’s list has a lot on it I like, the cuts need to be much, much larger to have any meaningful impact on the budget.

    At a very high level we need some combination of tax hikes or spending cuts totally about 30% of the Federal budget to at least be getting close to where we need to be. That still doesn’t save Social Security or Medicare, but at least gets the main budget more or less balanced. We don’t need “trim around the edges” type cuts. We need “stop doing X completely” level cuts and a lot of them I’m afraid.

    I believe Marinm has also previously posted his wish list of cuts.

    1. @FA

      Why don’t you repost them? Obviously I have a short memory.

      I can’t ever remember using the word ‘monstrous.’ Marin continually has suggestions for cuts that I find unacceptable. However, other people might find my suggestion for cuts unacceptable, which is sort of the point.

Comments are closed.