Dare To Balance The Budget? An Interactive Guide To Washington's Biggest Nightmare

Tyler Durden's picture

The CBO has outlined a number of options for balancing the budget (full paper below). From 'Increases In Tax Revenue' to 'Cuts to Annually Appropriated Spending' and 'Cuts to Benefits or Entitlements', it's all here in a handy Do-It-Yourself Interactive Deficit-Reduction Plan tool from WSJ. All 'compromises' welcome...


Click on the images to link to the WSJ site and try your hand a fixing the $1.1 trillion deficit projected for 2020...

Increases In Tax Revenues


Cuts To Annually Appropriated Spending


Cuts To Benefits or Entitlements



43692 DeficitReduction Screen

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ACP's picture

Easy. Cut, cut, cut, cut, cut, cut, cut, cut, cut, cut, cut, cut, cut, cut, cut, cut.


Eireann go Brach's picture

Send Obama back to Kenya and hire Kermit the frog, odds of an improved budget increased ten fold!

Bawneee Fwank's picture

Someday we'll find it, the rainbow connection!



idea_hamster's picture

This is complete bull -- the idea that the most you can cut from our "It's 10 o'clock. Do you whether your children have been drone bombed by the US" chickenhawk military is $75 million?  STFU & GTFO.

No more drones.  Bayonets are cheap and low maintenance -- but that requires Americans (most who have never even seen any of the meat on their dinner table get the axe) to come face to face with the violence we export.  Poor PR, no doubt.

Maybe the "Defense" Dept. should be just that?

(NB -- chickenhawk comment not directed at 11-series MOS and other boots on the ground combat arms.  During my time with 2nd ID in ROK, I knew lots of 11B and 11C who had more sack in their little fingers than I'll ever know.)

prains's picture



the red button that says "EJECT" push it, the canopy pops, washington DC is pumped into orbit as "space garbage" 



budget balanced

Lost My Shorts's picture

I agree, this is typical WSJ neocon bullshit.  Withdraw from Afghanistan is not an option.  Eliminate aid to Israel and Egypt is not an option.  Cut the DOD by half is not an option.

Not to mention, no option for cutting farm subsidies, or eliminating various forms of corporate welfare.

eatthebanksters's picture

Find the chimp that throws darts at the stock page of the newspapers (and beats the yields of the pro money managers) and let him throw darts at the cut list until we get to the magic number!

ball-and-chain's picture

I love the smell of an unbalanced budget in the morning.

It smells like...victory.

What do I care?

I have a school bus.  I have plenty chili.  I've got ammo for my gun.

I'm ready for the apocalypse.

Bring it on!


centerline's picture

That won't win elections!  The easier answer is print, print, print, print, print, print...

No budget necessary.  Just blame it on the other guy.  And making America safer too.

babylon15's picture

Think again.  If you check every box that cuts spending, the deficit is still $274 billion.  Try it out!

Milton Waddams's picture

this is America  start from ZERO.

ask any 'job creator' about the secret to his success and 79.6% will tell you it is all about FAILURE!  LEARN TO FAIL, admirably.  And try again, and again.  Everyone wants to spike the proverbial football; only a tiny number of us are willing to pitch it to the referee and start again

GtownSLV's picture

This is all based on CBO projections of a $142 Billion deficit in 2020. WAFJ !!!

EscapingProgress's picture

Where is the "DEFAULT" option? Can this not be seriously considered? Russia did it.

My solution:

1) End the Fed

2) Default on all gov't debt obligations

3) Print debt-free money

jekyll island's picture

Couldn't balance the budget because they left off two items:  

1) Convert all politicians benefits to the same one offered to all US citizens 

2) End all government subsidies

3) Pull the federal reserve bank charter

OK, left three things off.  There.  Now I can balance the budget.  

Unstable Condition's picture

Let's see, cut like mad....

Wait, I don't see an option for ending the Fed and the 16th amendment.

This is BS. Nothing changes without those options.

fnord88's picture

Think they are found in the appendix, under V for Violent Revolution. Governments increase their power. Always. Show me a government which has ever done the opposite.

Buzzworthy's picture

Actually, the Confederate States of America reduced the power of the central government to so great an extent that it hamstrung the Southern war effort.  Concessions needed to be made by the states in order to prosecute the war, but by and large the national government in Richmond remained limited in comparison with Washington.  Still, this is the exception that proves your rule.

Careless Whisper's picture

Click on the images to link to the WSJ site...

no thank you. pure propaganda. noticeably absent from the list is ron paul's deficit reduction plan, which is rather simple.

bilejones's picture

The 16th Ammendment was never actually ratified so how can a fiction be ended?

Unstable Condition's picture

Ah, good point.

Revolution following monetary collapse it is

Samsonov's picture

Oh, the constitution?  We don't worry about that old thing any more.

Samsonov's picture

Cutting is too hard.  They should just take out a Capital Appreciation Bond from Uncle Ben.

Sudden Debt's picture

I ran a 686 billion surplus by just cutting the crap out and making the rich pay a fair tax like everybody else.

To bad there wasn't a button that said: "MAKE IT HAPPEN" on the site...

Clever Name's picture

Austerity is coming to your town.

Prepare to deal with it, bitchez!

Unprepared's picture

Keep dreaming. They might strike a $1 Trillion of next 20 years cuts package consisting of reductions to future budgeted increases in spending and spin it as austerity.


The real nominal austerity would be the low wage, higher prices most folks will be subject to, moar fairer distribution by the central authority, low wages/higher prices, moar fairer distribution....

ArsoN's picture

Where's the "close down military bases" button?  

pragmatic hobo's picture

let tax cuts expire for all -- saves $550B
cut defense spending by 60% -- saves $400B
eliminate DHS -- saves $100B
eliminate farm subsidy -- saves $20B
eliminate subsidy to energy industry -- saves $70B

there, problem solved.

you enjoy myself's picture

raising tax rates doesn't save anything.  otherwise, yes.

q99x2's picture

You can't balance fraud. You have to prosecute it.

prains's picture

you can't prosecute fraud either in a captured regulatory corptocracy. You have to impale it on a sharp stick or drive over it back up again and squish it gooooooooood (moonshiners drawl here)

Stuck on Zero's picture

The choices are bullshit.  It doesn't get to the heart of the problem.  How about:

No handouts ever unless work or value is performed.

Mercantilist countries get automatic 100% VAT until balance of trade is even.

Eliminate 80% of all the intelligence departments and Homeland Security.

Cut all government budgets by 30%.  Freeze spending for ten years.

Go to VAT only and eliminate income taxes.

Eliminate taxes on money brought into the United States.


Yes_Questions's picture



Bullshit list.  Why isn't there a $100 Bazillion revenue option for colonizing Mars?

A new Manifest Destiny is in order.  How weak is our empire and its terrestrial boundaries.


Go OFFWORLD to the Colonies!!

With Freak'n laser beams no less!

Ginsengbull's picture

So the banksters can rape another planet?

Yes_Questions's picture



Well yeah?!?


We seem compelled to leave those fucks at the controls, so lets help em' double down on their awful growth paradigm and see what the Universe really thinks of us.



Ginsengbull's picture

How about we send them to mars, then nuke it?

Yes_Questions's picture



That should create a few jobs



Chupacabra-322's picture

Here's an idea.  Immediately stop funding the Illegal Wars and cut the Military Industrial Complex budget in half.  Plus, end all foreign aid. 

SmallerGovNow2's picture

that gets you maybe 400 billion, what next?

alien-IQ's picture

It would be more practical and useful to society to be able to solve a Rubik's Cube through a glory hole than to spend even one minute on this utter nonsense.

It's all meaningless because the numbers are meaningless. It's all complete bullshit being provided for you to remind you of "just how difficult" the jobs of our "betters" are.

Matt's picture

I "like" how the options to reduce spending or increase revenues in this simulation are generally based around adding more and more rules and regulations, to continue increasing the complexity of the system.

alien-IQ's picture

They've already got a workaround for that. It's called the TPP. It's fabulous. It creates a mechanism that if a corporations is "encumbered" from profiting off of, say...dumping their poison in a local public lake because the government has created regulations that say you can't "dump poison in a public lake"...then the government will have to compensate the corporation for the money they did not make from dumping their poison in a public lake.

It is not unlike allowing a hitman to sue the government for lost revenue because the government decided to make murder for hire a crime.

prains's picture

regulatory complexity is graphed into regulatory control to allow TPTB back doors to escape with your money

madcows's picture

Unfortunately, the debt is real, and therefore, it is very meaningful. 

overmedicatedundersexed's picture

madcows, debt is real as in real real or in the 0.1% take a hit if we default? corzine is that you?

Global Hunter's picture

Unless there's an option to click on a button that allows me to cut spending by half a trillion at a time, and bring the troops home, I'm not playing.

HellFish's picture

Where's the option to cut goverment employees by 50%?

Global Hunter's picture

The retailers had something to say about that.