Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Obama proposes closing barn door…

I'm all in favor of this, and it at least stops us from digging the hole deeper. But at some point we've got to actually start fixing the problem:

With the budget deficit soaring toward a record $1.8 trillion, the Obama administration is planning to propose tough new rules that would require lawmakers to pay for new initiatives -- including an overhaul of the health system -- or face automatic spending cuts.

…If approved by Congress, the rules would forbid lawmakers from expanding entitlement programs such as Medicare and Social Security, creating new entitlement programs or cutting taxes unless the cost is covered by spending cuts or tax increases. If lawmakers fail to pay for their initiatives, Obama's rules would subject entitlement programs to automatic cuts, said sources who spoke on condition of anonymity because the plan has yet to be announced.


1 comment:

James said...

However, as the story also points out:

"The administration will propose that many costly items get a pass under the new rules, sources familiar with the proposal said. Lawmakers would be able to extend the tax cuts passed by the Bush administration past their 2010 expiration date, prevent the alternative minimum tax from ensnaring millions of additional taxpayers and increase payments to Medicare physicians without offsetting the enormous costs. Administration officials have argued that those actions would merely extend current policy."

The rationale provided in the last sentence is especially lame, since it's immaterial to the central issue of fiscal prudence.