Debt Ceilings, Spending, and Revenue
For the most part I haven't commented on the ongoing mess that our Congress and Administration are hashing around other than take the basic Libertarian Party perspective (http://www.lp.org/news/press-releases/libertarians-say-no-to-raising-deb...).
In reality while I've kept up with all the shenanigans I've been completely absorbed with trying to survive on the approximately 50% of my earnings the government is letting me keep.
I'm sure some out there would immediately think OMG ("oh my god" for those not into trendy acronyms) Paul must be earning a lot of money if he is paying 50% taxes. That sends things back to a previous post in January 2010 - http://www.paullazaga.org/taxation. So if you think I'm one of the rich elites making over $200,000 per year you better think again and I suggest you take a personal assessment of your own tax burden.
While the Libertarian Party and many of its members would like to not raise the debt ceiling I take a more pragmatic view in realizing that the national debt amounts to a snowball rolling down a very steep hill gaining speed and size at seemingly exponential rates and you can't stop a force of this nature without receiving severe damage or calamity with the possibility that the snowballing debt and spending will roll right over you.
It is my position that we curtail spending through reduction in the size of government by removing redundant services and services better handled at the local level and increase the efficiency of delivery of services which cannot immediately removed, such as Social Security to our citizens of have met the current retirement age.
As I have observed in dealing with government agencies at national, state, and local levels the people spending the money have very little regard for its value since it is not their money, so additionally we need to institute a method of creating such ownership among our civil service employees through proper incentive so that they will feel the pinch in their private sector counterparts feel it when things are spent frivolously.
A recent government project I was involved with specified materials that would outlast the building they were to be attached by at least a century and on top of that would be painted with a system that firstly wasn't necessary and secondly was the most expensive way of doing things, but not necessarily the most enduring. I suggested, along with the material manufacturer, a system which was better performing and less expensive, but it was turned down. This is just one example.
There will have to be some increase in the debt limit, but I don't believe the long term extension is the way to go and all the talk about cutting $2 trillion here or $4 trillion there is nonsensical since the conversations talking about saving that amount over 10 years or sometimes more. If I divide the numbers it won't cover 1/3 of the current annual deficit, leaving 2/3 (about $1 trillion) to continue to accumulate annually. As I mentioned, I've been busy earning money to support the government, so I might be off on this analysis and invite comment.
Lastly revenue. I'm a supporter of a flat progressive flat tax. What's that? The first flat refers to a flattening of the curve so that most working citizens are paying taxes, but with some progressively tiered structure although not nearly as radical as the base tax rates currently in place, hence the progressive. The second "flat" would be the removal of all deductions and credits give for lifestyle choices or business choices put into place to either reward certain people or punish others. And since corporate taxes are a misnomer I'd remove them completely since in reality taxes of this sort are pushed to the people and are in place to prop up certain favored corporations or activity and especially for small business can place a large burden in the form of accounting and other tax related expenses.
So in a nutshell that is where I stand unless someone can convince me otherwise and you are more than welcome to try.