Conservative Party Cost Cutting Road Map for Congress
STOP BASE LINE BUDGETING: This pernicious accounting gimmick requiresbudgets to automatically increase by 10% every year. The net effect is that even if Congress “cuts” a program by 4%, for example, actual spending still increases by 6%. The “cut” is an illusion while the increase is real. It will be impossible to make meaningful budget reforms until this institutional deception is expunged.
STOP EARMARKING: Stop Congressional Earmarks immediately. While small in comparison to the general budget, this “legal” form of back-room corruption and pork is symptomatic of the culture of entitlement at the heart our fiscal problems. Congress should not bribe their constituents with tax payer money to get re-elected.
CUT CONGRESSIONAL PAY: Reduce congressional salaries, expense accounts and operating budgets by 10%. Freeze salaries and operations budgets at that reduced level for five years. Average Americans have endured a long list of hardships due to Congressional incompetence and corruption. Now it’s time for Congress to tighten its belt.
CUT FEDERAL EMPLOYEE PAY: Except for uniformed armed forces personnel, reduce salaries for ALL federal employees and contractors by 5% in 2012 and cut them an additional 5% in 2013. Freeze all salaries at 2013 levels until 2016.
FREEZE FEDERAL HIRING: Freeze civilian staffing levels for all federal agencies. Reduce staffing (including contractors) for all departments & agencies to December 2009 levels; retain those cuts for five years. Federal Government hiring has increased 35% in the past three years.
CUT OPERATING BUDGETS: Except for DOD, CIA and DHLS, reduce the operating budget for all federal departments & agencies by 10%; retain that cut for five years. Freeze DOD, CIA and DHLS budgets at 2010 levels for the next five years.
CUT DEPT OF EDUCATION: Reduce DOE’s budget and staff by 15% every year for the next five years. This highly inefficient and bloated bureaucracy has a staff exceeding 4,200 and a $137B annual budget. It has contributed little to educating America’s children as evidenced by declining test scores and high drop-out rates. Let the states manage education.
CUT FOREIGN AID – NOW: Reduce Foreign Aid by 20% in 2012 and by 10% in each of the next four years. Cut our U.N. annual contributions by 20%. The President and the State Department can decide which countries get reduced aid. America can’t afford to support all these third-world countries, many of whom actually hate us.
DEFUND AND REPEAL OBAMACARE: Defund key enforcement provisions of “ObamaCare”. This includes withholding funds for the 120 new Departments required by this Bill and the hiring of thousands of IRS agents needed to enforce its Mandate. Withhold those funds until there are enough votes in Congress to enact a full repeal and to override a Presidential veto. Start fresh with a new Bill.
MODIFY SOCIAL SECURITY: Impose means testing for people with net worth exceeding $5M or annual disposable income of $500K; increase the eligibility age from 65 to 67.
FIX MEDICARE AND MEDICAID: While very popular, these programs are bankrupting America in their current configuration. Their top-line spending must be cut across the board by 2% every year for the next 10 years (with NO adjustment for inflation) to ensure they’ll be available for our children.
STOP BAILOUTS: Bailing out failing companies makes no more sense today than it would have made in 1900 to bail out buggy manufacturers. Such bailouts have slowed the evolution of entirely new technologies, industries, retarded economic recovery and slowed job growth. Solyndra and other failed “green” companies are examples of crony capitalism at taxpayer expense, not sound fiscal policy.
ELIMINATE FUNDING FOR ARTS: In these dire times, America can ill afford to spend money on the National Endowment of the Arts (NEA), the Public Broadcasting System (PBS) and National Public Radio (NPR). These programs cost more than $200M annually and must be phased out completely within five years.