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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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Mon, 12/10/2012 - 22:29 | 3050642 ACP
ACP's picture

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


Mon, 12/10/2012 - 22:53 | 3050713 Eireann go Brach
Eireann go Brach's picture

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

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:46 | 3050899 Bawneee Fwank
Bawneee Fwank's picture

Someday we'll find it, the rainbow connection!


Tue, 12/11/2012 - 00:01 | 3050944 idea_hamster
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.)

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 02:21 | 3051208 prains
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

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 07:17 | 3051385 Lost My Shorts
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.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 02:52 | 3051236 eatthebanksters
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!

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 10:42 | 3051695 Atlasshruggedme
Atlasshruggedme's picture

Because the Frog can do math?

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 22:53 | 3050716 ball-and-chain
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!

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 22:53 | 3050719 centerline
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.

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:29 | 3050847 babylon15
babylon15's picture

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

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 02:01 | 3051181 Milton Waddams
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

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 03:12 | 3051258 GtownSLV
GtownSLV's picture

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

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 05:00 | 3051318 EscapingProgress
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

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 09:58 | 3051590 jekyll island
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.  

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 22:33 | 3050648 Unstable Condition
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.

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 22:37 | 3050663 fnord88
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.

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 22:45 | 3050682 Buzzworthy
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.

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 22:52 | 3050709 Careless Whisper
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.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 00:08 | 3050961 Ginsengbull
Ginsengbull's picture

Long live the Confederasah.

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 22:39 | 3050668 bilejones
bilejones's picture

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

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 22:46 | 3050683 Unstable Condition
Unstable Condition's picture

Ah, good point.

Revolution following monetary collapse it is

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 22:49 | 3050694 Samsonov
Samsonov's picture

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

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 22:38 | 3050658 Samsonov
Samsonov's picture

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

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 05:50 | 3051334 Sudden Debt
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...

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 22:38 | 3050662 Clever Name
Clever Name's picture

Austerity is coming to your town.

Prepare to deal with it, bitchez!

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:13 | 3050785 Unprepared
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....

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 22:41 | 3050673 ArsoN
ArsoN's picture

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

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 22:44 | 3050679 pragmatic hobo
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.

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:07 | 3050760 you enjoy myself
you enjoy myself's picture

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

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 22:44 | 3050680 q99x2
q99x2's picture

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

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 02:24 | 3051213 prains
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)

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 22:50 | 3050700 Stuck on Zero
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.


Mon, 12/10/2012 - 22:52 | 3050703 Yes_Questions
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!

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:16 | 3050791 Ginsengbull
Ginsengbull's picture

So the banksters can rape another planet?

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:25 | 3050834 Yes_Questions
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.



Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:36 | 3050875 Ginsengbull
Ginsengbull's picture

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

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:48 | 3050902 Yes_Questions
Yes_Questions's picture



That should create a few jobs



Mon, 12/10/2012 - 22:51 | 3050707 Chupacabra-322
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. 

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 08:03 | 3051419 SmallerGovNow2
SmallerGovNow2's picture

that gets you maybe 400 billion, what next?

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 22:52 | 3050710 alien-IQ
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.

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:36 | 3050873 Matt
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.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 00:04 | 3050955 alien-IQ
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.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 02:28 | 3051218 prains
prains's picture

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

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 10:15 | 3051626 madcows
madcows's picture

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

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 10:31 | 3051668 overmedicatedun...
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?

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 22:52 | 3050711 Global Hunter
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.

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 22:58 | 3050731 HellFish
HellFish's picture

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

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:00 | 3050740 Global Hunter
Global Hunter's picture

The retailers had something to say about that.

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 22:59 | 3050735 mercenaryomics
mercenaryomics's picture

We just need the American version


Mon, 12/10/2012 - 22:59 | 3050737 Seasmoke
Seasmoke's picture

Do nothing and send Israel the bill.

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:01 | 3050745 TroyPDX
TroyPDX's picture

There will never be any significant cuts, only printing. Politicans will never, ever make tough choices... that is until there is a large inflationary spike, and then it's WWIII to cover their asses.

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:05 | 3050753 nmewn
nmewn's picture

Ok...given my choices, this is what I came up with.

Your plan: $535 billion deficit2020, projected.

I didn't see pension and health plans for past & present elected officials who made this incredible mess or whacking entire UNEEDED federal departments...DHS etc. so this is, what it is.

A fools errand...but I still took out half the deficit with the choices allowed...without checking either of the "fiscal cliff" bullshit choices.

Warmest personal regards, my inept Masters of the Universe ;-)

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:32 | 3050861 Yes_Questions
Yes_Questions's picture



Results like these do not belong on the resume of a supreme being..

~G. Carlin

Inept is right.  May they and the roaches enjoy fighting over Twinkie wrappers in their used up world!

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:54 | 3050920 nmewn
nmewn's picture

Let me just say, I was surprised by the lack of real alternatives in the exercise...the size and scope of the federal bureaucracy was not presented...only what it provided at anothers expense. Take this but not that, it's not on the menu, we're out of it were.

Regulations and its costs to the people were not a factor nor was...well, many was completely static.

If one lives inside a box all they will ever see is the walls engulfing them ;-)

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 00:35 | 3051023 Yes_Questions
Yes_Questions's picture



Well, consider the source (WSJ) I suppose regards the alternatives.  

You already know the box will never be a wet paper bag for the powers that be and that we get to bask in the fallout of their effluents and emissions either way.

Fun for us and hopefully only makes us stronger.  

On the Size and Scope agument: I am not so concerned of the size as I am the Scope.  Unless we're exhcanging launch codes, the .gov has NO FUCKING BUSINESS in my discussions with you.  (thats the Scope part).

On the size part, I guess it becomes so subjective nowadays on whether any large .gov program has any benefit at all, its hard to discuss, even in polite company, such as yours.

Your freedom, health and general safety are worth fighting for and a vig from my paycheck to make these so is totally worth it.

You're not taking from me in this, but I get to participate in someting larger than me when the vig is materially beneficial to another.

That's where I'm at on the size part.  






Tue, 12/11/2012 - 07:51 | 3051408 nmewn
nmewn's picture


I didn't touch Tricare or raise the retirement age when I went through their choices.

Hell, I could (theoretically) make Social Security solvent tomorrow by raising the retirement age to't do much good to anyone though.

I come from the school of, they simply can't resist a large pile of cash sitting in front of them, so get/keep yours away from them as much as possible, if you can, is my advice. They obviously can't be trusted with the country's credit card so there is no logic in trusting them with your bank account/savings or any tax surplus.

The debt on the other hand is insurmountable, its gonna crash, it always does.

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:57 | 3050937 defender
defender's picture

I got it down to $112 billion, but I was also missing the "eliminate DHS" button, as well as the "end all current wars" button.  As many people think the DHS should be done away with, it is amazing that no one in DC pulls that up to pander to the masses.

*sigh* Just imagine it, no more insanely long lines at airports, no more bureaucrats marking "sensitive" data as classified, no more recording of everything you say on the phone or internet... wouldn't life be grand...again.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 02:17 | 3051204 James-Morrison
James-Morrison's picture

I got mine to a surplus, raise taxes and cut spending.
All tax increases go DIRECTLY to reduce deficit ( HINT: Republicans grow a pair, agree to Tax increases, with the stipulation, that all funds go directly to Debt reduction, no general fund bullshit, you will put the ball back in Bronco's court.)

We don't need no stinking Defense Budget, we have the Reserve Currency. Let the NWO defend the planet with their silly-ass Meat Helmits.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 03:49 | 3051280 Bobbyrib
Bobbyrib's picture

Yep, I got mine to a $60B surplus. As others have said the Cuts to Anually Appropriated Spending was not given enough choices. I cut entitlements by $165B. Basically high income earners and bums would hate my plan. If they had other choices, I would have put those in though and offset some of the tax increase with more cuts. This isn't rocket science, it's political garbage.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 07:09 | 3051379 Peterus
Peterus's picture

This "All tax increases go DIRECTLY to reduce deficit" is supposed to be some kind of hurdle? It would be circumvented instantly, not even next year. Whoever sets the spending would simply factor in additional revenue... who cares which dollar bill goes to which project if they are all in one wallet?

Anyway it's not "growing a pair" it's just playing the game where you win and citizens loose and they do it all the time. They just need to make these faces and push harder for their supporters and against others. This is just a theatrical side to the real game.

I would actually suggest that all USA citizens "grow a pair" and secede the hell out of this government.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 07:34 | 3051396 Bobbyrib
Bobbyrib's picture

"Whoever sets the spending would simply factor in additional revenue... who cares which dollar bill goes to which project if they are all in one wallet?"

That would be Congress. So if they agree to cut a lot of the bullshit out of the budget and allowed all the tax cuts to expire, it could potentially balance the budget. Will it happen? Not during our lifetime.

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:07 | 3050758 max2205
max2205's picture


Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:10 | 3050769 Ginsengbull
Ginsengbull's picture

Any good bankruptcy lawyers out there?

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:37 | 3050881 Matt
Matt's picture

I think Donald Trump was the best candidate, since he has what America needs most; someone with extensive experience with bankruptcy.


Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:53 | 3050917 Yes_Questions
Yes_Questions's picture



That's fucking funny right there!

That's the Business Experience the country will need the most:  Serial Bankruptcy!






Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:11 | 3050775 lolmao500
lolmao500's picture

That's kind of BS because lots of stuff that should be done aren't in there.

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:18 | 3050803 Ginsengbull
Ginsengbull's picture

Any way you want it.


Coke or Pepsi.

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:16 | 3050794 mark mchugh
mark mchugh's picture

Wierd.  I didn't see the "cut government workers' salaries 30%" button...

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:22 | 3050823 Ginsengbull
Ginsengbull's picture

Once we lay off half the govt, how hard would it be for the banksters, through the corporate controlled media, to organize a new government, unencumbered by any bill of rights?

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:32 | 3050859 alien-IQ
alien-IQ's picture

I hate to be the one that breaks the news to you but...that's already happened.

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:35 | 3050871 Ginsengbull
Ginsengbull's picture

I mean if they do it again.

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:30 | 3050855 you enjoy myself
you enjoy myself's picture

the WSJ's options are absurd.  i cut spending on virtually every option they presented, and raised revenue by eliminating the mortgage interest deduction and the state/local tax deduction.  and yet they tell me there's still a $208 B deficit.   they only give you the option to reduce spending to 2011 levels - well, how about 2007 levels?  those weren't exactly the dark ages.  we'd be running surpluses.

whoever designed this checklist is deliberately funnelling you to the conclusion that taxes have to go way up, that spending cuts can't realistically close the deficit.  its complete bullshit.  i mean, "Reduce by 0.5 percentage points the pay raise for federal government employees, whose pay has been frozen since 2011"?  how about an option for firing 10% of the fed govt employees, and reducing the pay of the remaining employees by 10%?  how about eliminating all farm subsidies, or the entire dept of education?  instead, they only present you with trivial, but heart-string tugging, options like "Eliminate federal grants for wastewater and drinking water infrastructure".


Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:39 | 3050884 Yes_Questions
Yes_Questions's picture



xactly.  Like waste water needs a grant.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 00:48 | 3051059 you enjoy myself
you enjoy myself's picture

i just realized i wasn't being cynical enough.  i did the checklist again, this time blindly checking off every single cut to entitlements and appropriations that was available, while not checking off any tax increases.  result?  a $274B deficit.  so the WSJ, of all places, is telling us its IMPOSSIBLE to kill the deficit with reduced spending.  

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:32 | 3050860 backhandtopspin...
backhandtopspinslicer's picture

being a good communist means never having to balance the budget

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:49 | 3050862 mark mchugh
mark mchugh's picture

And keep in mind, this shit is from the CBO.

Who in 2001, predicted the national debt would be less than $1 Trillion in 2011:

(page xvi)

Turns out they were off by a tad ($14 Trillion = one tad).

Accidently sitting on a calculator produces more accurate estimates.

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:53 | 3050923 akak
akak's picture

I predict that the US national debt will reach two tads by 2018 (if the current financial, monetary and political paradigms make it that far).

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 00:06 | 3050959 nmewn
nmewn's picture

So you're saying government cost and tax projections are usually unreliable!?! 

By the way, I'm not going to use the word "revenue" in the place of taxes's time we all started using the same language again among ourselves. Government has nothing to sell that wasn't taken from someone else.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 04:00 | 3051284 Bobbyrib
Bobbyrib's picture

As long as we're ready to cut military offense spending. When I did mine, I didn't cut for military benefits at all. I really feel for the people sent off to fight in wars we have no business fighting. Also it's time to get rid of the agricultural subsidies. I was watching that HBO special on obesity and heard a statistic that 90% of that goes to large farms. Half of us can pay for our own food in this country and don't need the government to hand our money to multi-national corporations to give us cheap, processed garbage to eat. I wonder what the outcome of a study of natural carcinogens in food and a study on what the multi's produce would be. My bet is that they would find our food supply is poisoned by the multi's.

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:52 | 3050911 HurricaneSeason
HurricaneSeason's picture

It should be based on the 30 year treasury that finances the debt. The interest is what will kill us if the rates go up. So, we take the $500 Billion from the tax cuts (2% isn't going to kill anybody) plus $100 Billion from the military and that will give us a 30 year savings of $18 trillion. We take the $18 trillion and pay off the national debt and there is stimulus money left over to resurface the roads again and some solar panel factories.

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:54 | 3050925 Nimby
Nimby's picture

Here's the Cliff Notes version of the above white paper:  "We're fucked!"

Mon, 12/10/2012 - 23:58 | 3050926 Kreditanstalt
Kreditanstalt's picture

They didn't give me some options...

Cut public employee pay 30% across the board.

Cut military budget by 60%.

Eliminate all government involvement in mandatory health insurance.


Tue, 12/11/2012 - 00:10 | 3050960 Blagio
Blagio's picture

Following WSJ logic, I sent everyone over the cliff, eliminated a bunch of Obamacare and Nondefense spending, brought down the number of foodstamp "ab"users, and didn't touch anyones pension including Obamas and came out on top $17 Billion.


What do I win?

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 04:01 | 3051286 Bobbyrib
Bobbyrib's picture

I'll tell you what you don't win and that is a seat in Congress. Try harder to spend more in the future. /sarcasm.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 00:21 | 3050981 Seize Mars
Seize Mars's picture

First of all, the headline of this article is incorrect. This isn't Washington's biggest nightmare. It's nothing. A non-event. An opportunity to make some hay.

Secondly, the little graphic game courtesy of the Wall Street Journal won't give you a "solution" until you click on "raise taxes." Nice. I'm wondering if there perhaps is a statist on the staff at the Wall Street Journal? How did a Statist infiltrate the WSJ?

Ha. Very funny, Washington DC.


Tue, 12/11/2012 - 00:33 | 3051020 HurricaneSeason
HurricaneSeason's picture

This is just fiscal cliff part 1. We will still have to do fiscal cliff part 2 thru 10, so if they screw part 1 up a little, it doesn't matter.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 00:45 | 3051052 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

I like how they threw in there the option to reduce federal workers salary by .05% "whose wages have been frozen since 2011" they forgot to mention the Obummer gave them a 10% raise his first year in office while the rest of the nation was taking a payroll haircut.  Where is the option to end all subsidies or to eliminate useless agencies? I think the WSJ isn't even trying to hide the fact that it's just another propoganda arm of the government.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 01:13 | 3051115 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

That'd fix it.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 01:58 | 3051175 Clowns on Acid
Clowns on Acid's picture

The WSJ has turned largely into a joke. Feel bad for the former stff there before Murder_ocks takeover.

Try this for a real look at the shiite spending on the books.

As we have agreed that Cutting Spending is the 1st logical step in resolving the Fed Fiscal Crisis. Here are my selections straight from the CBOO’s 2013 Budget.

I have saved the US taxpayer approx.. $ 250 Billion / year.  Doing really nothing Hey – Have fun yourself. Cut out what you recognize as fat and obvious “discretionary” policy wonk waste here:


My recommendation for cuts to Fed Spending  - Eliminate:

·         Dept of Housing and Urban Development –        $ 48 Billion (discretionary) – It is the States responsibility

·         Dept of Education -                                                         $ 70 Billion (discretionary) – It is the States responsibility

·         Dept of Health and Human Services –                     $76.4 Billion (discretionary) – It is the States responsibility

·          Dept of Treasury –                                                         $ 14B

o   Cut out following functions within Treasury. What are possibly doing there any way??               

o   Supports small business lending and protects vulnerable homeowners, while responsible winding-down the Troubled Asset Relief Program (this has already been done ).

o    Promotes community development through capital, credit, and financial services to low income communities.

o   Increases funding for the Healthy Food Financing Initiative, which helps make healthy foods more affordable and accessible to underserved communities.


So I have just cut $196 Billion of the Fed deficit, not counting the probable $10B that the taxpayer is getting fleeced in the Non Treasury but listed under Treasury line items. There is another $ 25Billion out of State Dept. below


Additional cuts

 State Dept. and Other “Int’l Programs -                                $51.6 B (discretionary)

·         Cut out following functions within Other Int’l Programs (are you kidding me – that we spend taxpayer dollars “on a discretionary” basis – on THESE line items??

•     Responds to the Arab Spring by supporting the aspirations of people in the Middle East and North Africa, with more than $800 million to assist countries in transition and create incentives (CREATE INCENTIVES !!) for long-term economic, political, and trade reforms.

•     Advances the President’s aggressive HIV-prevention goal, including his plan to support 6 million HIV patients on antiretroviral treatment by the end of 2013 through a $7.9 billion

investment in the President’s Global Health Initiative. This builds on the Initiative’s strong progress in fighting infectious disease and child and maternal mortality.

                    Continues a multi-year plan to make strategic investments to address the root causes of hunger and poverty and to help prevent crises such as the 2011 famine in the Horn of Africa

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 04:00 | 3051285 savagegoose
savagegoose's picture

-$304 billion here defecit here.  im sure i could just go positive. by being a total  prick. still i didnt make oldies work another 2 years before going on   social security. its posted on  tweet some where


Tue, 12/11/2012 - 04:06 | 3051294 Bobbyrib
Bobbyrib's picture

I'm in the tail end of Generation X. That will happen to my generation (we probably won't receive anything), whether we like it or not. I increased the age. Fuck it if everyone has to eat the shit sandwich, so do they. It's called saving for retirement, they should have tried it rather than spending like worthless imbeciles.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 06:56 | 3051371 Peterus
Peterus's picture

Older generations voted this debt it.

If they said "no" to FDR new deal, or to Nixons complete repeal of gold standard situation would look much better now. Though they were just accomplices, with rulers exectuting these decisions and taking full blame.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 07:40 | 3051401 Bobbyrib
Bobbyrib's picture

To some extent, all generations voted for the debt.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 04:03 | 3051290 SmittyinLA
SmittyinLA's picture

I'm guessing on "things to cut" the WSJ doesn't include:

(Fill in blank)

But I'll start with the $50.x billion Osprey weapons system

Free shit for illegals in CA. ( I live here)


All of Africa

Israel and Egypt


Tue, 12/11/2012 - 04:25 | 3051298 SoundMoney45
SoundMoney45's picture

Cut expenditures 90% across the board, eliminate all existing taxes, and implement a 2% VAT.  

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 04:43 | 3051310 luckylongshot
luckylongshot's picture

According to Gary North (2012) the deficit figures overlook unfunded liabilities, which if included raise it to $11 Trillion per annum....this means every american taxpayer would need to pay $100,000 per annum to balance the books. As the average wage is $50,000 this is impossible. The answer seems to be to declare all the debt where there was no consideration given by the banks void...which is 100% of it, nationalise the banks, jail the banksters and kickstart the economy with Government issued Thomas Jefferson recommended.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 06:52 | 3051369 Peterus
Peterus's picture

Gut the FED. Stop setting interest rates, let the market take care of that. Let any commodity to be used as money if anyone wants to use it. Stop guaranteeing bank deposits and any and all kinds of assistance and protection for responsibility from banks.

Than default on debts and just don't borrow anymore. No more bonds, just spend what you rob from people directly.

This would be responsible reform of the State, so it can still terrorize it's own civilians, rob them at will and provide welfare for whoever it deems worthy - but constrained in some real financial system not gigantic Ponzi scheme.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 06:46 | 3051365 bigkahuna
bigkahuna's picture

Ive run a billion dollar surplus:



Tue, 12/11/2012 - 06:50 | 3051367 Clowns to the l...
Clowns to the left_ jokers to the right's picture

I got it down to $169 billion but if there were an "End nation building", "Quit sticking our Fing nose in other people's business" or "Close all military bases outside the U.S." option, my surplus would make Clinton's look like petty cash.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 07:30 | 3051391 Urban Redneck
Urban Redneck's picture

Balancing the budet is easy, finding, much less empowering- leaders with the stomach to do so, not so much.

The existing (100+ yr) stock of debt is being increased with a new flow at 10% ANNUALLY- deal with it, or it will deal with you.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 07:31 | 3051393 egoist
egoist's picture

You simply can't get there from here. We need sixteen-thousand billion just to be broke. And we need a culture that banishes "I am my brother's keeper" if we're going to gnaw away at the bills due. We need different ideas and about 50 years of acceptance. Pretty goddamn hopeless, me thinks.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 07:38 | 3051397 virgilcaine
virgilcaine's picture

Now back to covering Kat's "illness:... for the Wsj.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 09:46 | 3051565 overmedicatedun...
overmedicatedundersexed's picture

raise taxes on imports( ah tariff) that word never spoken in modern the fed gov with same, eliminate income taxes you know that tax that came with the start of the FED. cut off the FED and let them solve the debt on thier books  as in eat it. they can print FRN's to pay back to themselves, but not put debt on Fed gov books. a few ideas along with downsizing military and such. we could all write pages on this but you get the idea.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 07:42 | 3051402 Watauga
Watauga's picture

It amazes me that so many self-described libertarians on ZH start by accepting the Statists' lie of lies--that is, that you have to raise taxes to raise revenue.  Seriously, so much lost credibility right from the start. 

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 08:05 | 3051424 fijisailor
fijisailor's picture

I went through this farce and balanced the budget and even came up with a surplus but significant cuts to the military were not even available as an option.  Obviously the deck is stacked in favor of corporate interests.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 09:39 | 3051552 madcows
madcows's picture

only in the fiscal cliff scenario, where defense cuts are part of it... I still came up with a 400 billion dollar surplus.  I should run for oriface.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 08:36 | 3051432 Freedomtosayno
Freedomtosayno's picture

Just for starters cut the Departments of (lack or lack thereof) Education, Commerce, HUD (sell off assets), Energy, Interior (Sell off lands), (so called) Homeland security, cut all foreign aid, cut IMF funding, CIA, DOT, bring the troops home, cut the Military/Pentagon by half along with a full audits, block grant Medicare/Medicaid while phasing them out over twenty years, Phase out (state) Social Security by raising the retirement age 3 months every year until no one is on it. Abolish the 16th & 17th amendments to the Constitution. Have open/free competition for monies/coinage. Add two amendments to the constitution. Strip the power of the President to appoint Supreme court judges (allow the State's Electors via convention to do it / 12 year terms, maybe reconvened) and allow only 12 years for House (6 terms) and Senate (2 terms), #2, strip the allowance of a central bank along with a balance budget requirement, The Federal will longer be allowed to borrow as Jefferson wanted correctly, unless under a 3/4 super majority under a declared state of war.

The presumption is that gov’t spending (stimulus) is good with the Keynesians. While we know it is a wasteful burden of malinvestment.

Peace and prosperity here is a situation we haven’t had for long time!

With the love of liberty my friends…



Tue, 12/11/2012 - 09:02 | 3051496 Eugend66
Eugend66's picture

Do Not Sell the land!! Maybe rent it. That`s all. Otherwise, good points.

Tue, 12/11/2012 - 10:18 | 3051601 Freedomtosayno
Freedomtosayno's picture

Thank you. Other cuts on all farm and corporate subsidies/welfare, etc.  Plus an alphabet city of agencies, so called foundations, bureaucracies and NGOs. Oh and one of the main sources of revenue in the 19th century for the Federal gov't was selling land from the Louisiana Purchase.



Tue, 12/11/2012 - 15:34 | 3052726 Theosebes Goodfellow
Theosebes Goodfellow's picture

This thing has been around for at least a couple of years. The San Jose Mercury News touted it once, and when I tried it I came to some very quick conclusions.

1.) Not everything is "on the table". You cannot say, terminate Medicare D, or end the Dept. of Education or "end foreign entanglements".

2.) Much like a Delphi Strategy, it forces you to conclusions it wants you to have.


While mildly entertaining as an exercise in futility, it is all rather academic. As others have pointed out, what we have here is not a 'budget problem" or a "spending problem", but a "moral government" problem. You can legislate anything you like, but without leaders with sound moral judgment and "content of character", all is lost. Prepare accordingly.

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