Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Bush's Budget Debacle

Some fun facts about our Esteemed President's budget:

1) The interest on the national debt has increased by 18% since last year, and is the second largest expenditure in the 2006 proposed budget; greater than the education, transportation, and community development items combined. $211 billion. With a B.

2) The Alternative Minimum Tax, which was originally designed to ensure that the very wealthy were not able to loophole themselves out of paying a single cent in taxes, has not been adjusted since it was implemented. This means that *I* am coming perilously close to having to pay the AMT when I can't even afford a vacation. When I am trying to put money away for retirement, to little effect.

3) Directly related to #2: The Bush administration has not adjusted the level at which the AMT kicks in because they "would lose too much tax revenue." Hmmm. Interesting. I see that the "loss of revenue" did not stop him from locking in every single other tax cut he had proposed for corporations and truly wealthy individuals.

4) Much is being made of the fact that this budget cuts the deficit in half. Has anyone thought of what that actually means? Practically speaking, it means, let's say, that I am $10,000 in credit card debt; it means that this year I promise to only spend myself into $5,000 of credit card debt. Woo Hoo! I ROCK! I am the paragon of financial circumspection. If you think it's so fantastic to "cut the deficit in half" then I encourage you to hire someone to manage your PERSONAL funds in that manner. Let's see how much is left for your grandkids.

I think we need to rename President Bush's offering, because doesn't the word "budget" imply some kind of fiscal discipline?

No comments: