To the 115th Congress.
I understand and appreciate the fact you are wanting to lower taxes, It has proven on more than one occasion to turn around the economy and launch it into prosperity, but I do have some serious concerns about this process.
First off, I understand that nothing is going to be officially released until November 1st, but speculation in the media is that both SALT (State and Local Tax Deductions) and 401k donations may be on the table to be hit to cover the cost of the tax cuts.
I understand that both the House and Senate are ran by Republican majorities, so I was very confused why the budget increased approximately $300 BILLION from last year. The Republicans are supposed to be the fiscally conservative party, so why is spending going up?
You say that you may have to get rid of the SALT and 401K write-offs to pay for the tax cuts, but I have not heard word from anyone in charge that you would also have spending cuts.
As a taxpayer in this country, I really have to question why you feel you need to spend so much money to begin with? Do we really need to have $4 TRILLION in spending a year? You are borrowing over a million dollars a minute, and I do not feel it fair that your out of control spending has already put my 3 year old son $60k in debt because you cannot live within your means. You are spending approximately $12,300 per citizen in the country and I have to say, I have yet to see a dollar of that. There are also 22 million people working for the government (not counting military), is that number even closely necessary? That is one Government Employee for every 14.7 citizens, a little overkill? You realize that is more government employees than either union employees, manufacturing employees, self-employed or all military veterans?
You can’t seriously tell me that you couldn’t easily cut 10-20% of the budget. Either by negotiating better deals for costs. Cutting out useless programs (shrimp on a treadmill, really?), and cutting out some government employees, especially the redundant ones? I wish someone would do a line by line audit of the federal budget and spending, and I can only imagine how many billions of dollars have been mis-used and lost. The IRS will audit citizens at the drop of the hat, why shouldn’t the government that is supposed to be working for us, face the same audit?
You make a big deal about how you are basically doing American’s a favor by cutting taxes, when the reality is, you shouldn’t be spending money as you do now, because it is OUR money, not yours. I have lost track of how many times I have heard people in Congress talk about “Oh that program is only a few million dollars, or that program is less than .1% of the budget, so it isn’t that big of a deal.” I bet if it was your money you were paying out you would care a bit more. How about we save ourselves a few million and you work for free? Would you care then?
Why do I and millions of families have to live by a budget and within our means, but you don’t? I know we don’t have donors and lobbyists putting money in our pockets to spend other people’s money, but does it make it right? Because the people who are suffering are the American people, you guys work half the year, have a staff both in DC and probably 1-3 more staffs in your home states (also paid for by us) and yet get nothing done, but more spending. One thing I have noticed over the last couple years, if it comes to spending money, there is a lot of urgency in DC, yet if it is something to save American’s money, you take your own sweet time, go on vacation after vacation, and then have to rush back to DC to increase the debt ceiling or spending bills.
Here are some spending cut ideas for you.
- With modern technology you have no need to be in DC, EVER. Fire those staffs and set up ONE office in your district for the House of Representatives, and TWO offices in a state for a Senator. If there need for discussions on bills, arguments on the floor or votes, committee meetings, etc. you do them through Skype, or similar technology. Saves greatly on both travel costs back and forth. Cuts down expenses for staff, and we will also cut your pay in half, because if you aren’t bouncing back and forth to DC, what is to stop you from getting a real job, so you can get an idea of what the constituents in your area are going through. Plus cuts down operating expenses at the Capitol building. The environmentalists would love it. It would also kill the use for K Street and the lobbyists.
- Ban lobbyists. You work for your constituents, not lobbyists. End PACs and Super PACs, so there is no where for that money to go, and you can ONLY accept donations from your constituents. No money from outside your district if you are in the House of Representatives, or out-of-state for Senators.
- The 10% rule, if it works for God, it is going to have to work for you. The next tax rate for everyone, both private citizens, small business and corporations is 10% of earnings. That is all the money you will get to spend, and you will have to live within that. Imagine how many companies would come to the US with a 10% tax? Imagine how many people may finally get their butts off their couches and finally go to work, instead of sitting home collecting a check, because obviously at 10% tax a lot of entitlement programs will be forced to vanish. There should be more tax brackets, and no one should ever get a refund that is more than they paid in. Why should we pay people to be a citizen in the greatest country in the world?
- If you use this tax rate across the board, even those wanting more immigration will win, because with the job boom caused by it, it will open the doors to LEGAL immigrants coming to this country. But ONLY after the REAL unemployment drops to 5% or less. Which right now sits at around 8.5%.
The reason people say that the Reagan Tax Cut didn’t work was because the deficit exploded $2T in 8 years, but what is not taken into account is that after the Reagan tax cut, the money coming into the government went from $599 Billion in 1981 to $991 Billion by 1989, an increase of 65%. But spending went from $678 Billion in 1981 to 1.144 Trillion in 1989 an increase of 69%. With a total of $1.5T added to the deficit. Spending from 1981 to 2016 has increased from $678 Billion to $3.85T an increase of 568%, and I simply ask WHY? Even if you say, well money was worth less than it is now, you would need a 5.1% inflation per year to justify the spending increase. When the reality is from 1981-2016 has averaged 3.03% So by that justification the spending should JUST be $1.985T so approximately HALF of what it is now. Tax revenue by the 3.03% would only be $2.285T had we kept going with the Reagan tax breaks. So we would have a $300B SURPLUS right now. I know I am getting a bit wonky now, but this chart shows where we WOULD be, had spending and revenue grew at just inflation. Starting in 1981 for spending, and 1989 (after the tax cuts) to show where would be now, compared to where we actually are.
So as you can see by this simplified math. Had Congress kept spending increases at inflation, not by feel, we would not be $20 Trillion in debt, we would have a $7 Trillion surplus and that is not including any interest on the surplus, or the fact that $7 Trillion could have been given back to the American tax payers and an even bigger tax cut.
Tax cuts are not the problem, spending is. Until you are held accountable for this spending, this country is in trouble. We are NOT an entitlement society. This is not a socialist country. Stop acting like it is.
Thank you for your time.
Comments always welcome.