Inconvenient truth: U.S. spends twice what it makes
In November 2012, the U.S. Treasury received $5 billion per day. We spent $11 billion a day — leaving a shortfall of $6 billion.
The top spending order was Medicare, Social Security, military and interest on our debt. Our politicians are spending America on her way into bankruptcy. Not included in these numbers is the fact that 10,000 people per day turn 65.
Any intelligent adult should conclude that we are spending our way to financial disaster.
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The fiscal cliff debate was a short-term issue. My vote would have been for going over the cliff and demanding that the Senate pass a budget (a constitutional requirement) that is signed into law by the president.
Let every adult American pay taxes at some level. We all get the benefits of our infrastructure, highways and military protection. Everyone should participate in paying for it. If all adults paid some income taxes, the wasteful spending by our government officials might change.
Our $16 trillion debt cannot be solved with a single, simple solution. We cannot borrow and print money to achieve solvency.
Major economic growth would be helpful with more workers paying taxes rather than receiving benefit checks. Restructuring Medicare and Social Security immediately and cutting all spending that is wasteful or redundant in government is imperative.
There has been a dangerous shift to an entitlement mentality rather than that of former president John F. Kennedy. Kennedy's famous quote: "Ask not what your country can do for you — ask what you can do for your country."
Where cuts can begin
Wondering where to make cuts? Social Security or Medicaid? Just how should we reduce the deficit?
How about these salary numbers: president, $450,000; House and Senate members, $174,000; speaker of the House, $223,500; majority/minority leaders, $194,400. And that does not include their pensions.
Average salary of a soldier deployed in Afghanistan, $38,000. Average income for seniors on Social Security, $14,000.
I think we found where some easy cuts should be made. Or are they just going to decide to put the burden on the middle class?
Michael and Hetty White
The fiscal cliff existed for over 500 days until at the 11th hour they cobbled together a quick fix while kicking the can down the road once more on deficit reduction and taxes.
The 112th Congress was the biggest do-nothing body in recent history. The irony is their complicity in getting us into the problems we are facing.
Any leader employed in private industry who had the leadership skills of Sens. Harry Reid and Mitch McConnell and Reps. John Boehner and Nancy Pelosi would have been fired by now.
Since the taxpayers cannot fire these individuals who are either majority or minority leaders in Congress, I urge each to resign.
I cannot believe that there are not two people in the House and in the Senate who could lead Congress more effectively than these incumbents.
Every taxpayer should be sick over the fact that the peoples' business in Congress cannot be done effectively and efficiently.
So now we know the murder of four heroic Americans in Benghazi was the direct result of incompetency by the president and his administration.
Fox News had it right from the start. Its coverage was unrelenting, much to the chagrin of so-called journalists in the major media who hunkered down, hoping that if they didn't cover it, it would go away until after the election.
Well, that scheme worked. Their man has been re-elected. In the meantime some scapegoats have been found in the form of three individuals of little or no significance in the State Department.
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton has been saved to run in 2016. The Herald-Leader and its media friends are perfectly satisfied with this explanation and we need not go further with this unseemly situation.
But there is one more explanation to be given before we can put it to rest. It goes like this: President George W. Bush used the same security measures to protect our embassy in Liechtenstein. It worked well there. It's not their fault they didn't work in Benghazi. So it's Bush's fault.
J. L. Lombardo