We can no longer protect politicians' sacred cows

2013-04-02T01:00:00Z We can no longer protect politicians' sacred cows nwitimes.com
April 02, 2013 1:00 am

Government is spending too much. Question to Tea Party: Cut Spending? Yes! Social Security? No! Medicare? No! Defense? No! What? Cut Congress' salaries! A 50 percent cut = 0.0003 percent of GNP!

Today's financial realities were created by changes in our human population and past decisions. We can no longer protect sacred cows. The solutions must reflect both of these realities.

Reality 1: We are living longer, healthier lives. Today's 70 is the old 65.

Solution 1: Ratchet up the eligibility age for Social Security to 65 and Medicare to 70 over 10 years. Obamacare will fill the health care gap.

Reality 2: The wealthiest Americans significantly benefited from Bush tax cuts (10 percent) from 2001 to 2012, and many of the wealthiest Americans significantly benefited from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Solution 2: The wealthiest Americans should repay the debt created by the unnecessary Bush tax cuts and wars (10 percent extra for 11 years).

- S. Robert Schwartz, Valparaiso

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