Monday, August 29, 2011

The US Government Budget process is like 3 Card Monty

If you wonder why the last fiasco out of Washington with the budget ceiling was so ridiculous the explanation is very simple. They haven’t produced a budget in almost 2 years, again ALMOST 2 YEARS. Why? Let me break it down as to why we are using continuing resolutions to extend the FY2010 (passed in 2009!) budget.
  1.  After the Republican bloodbath in 2010, the “lame duck” Congress REFUSED to produce a FY 2011 budget.
  2.   The Republican House passed a FY2012 budget that didn’t nearly cut enough but the Democrats in charge of the Senate didn’t even put it up for a vote, they buried their constitutional responsibility. However the Senate IRONICALLY, unanimously said NO to the ridiculous budget that President Obama submitted.
  3.  No matter what, the FY 2010 spending levels are in effect, PLUS that ridiculous “automatic” 7.5 % increase that has been in effect since 1974. Even though they are only passing continuing resolutions the 7.5% IS INCLUDED EVERY YEAR.
  4. The budget process in the US Congress is so broken that they have NO IDEA WHERE ALL OF THE MONEY IS. No one does. (Gives you a warm fuzzy feeling don’t it).
Here are a couple of common sense solutions that could help.
  1.  Repeal the Congressional Budget Act of 1974. That act required the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to prepare projections of federal spending for the upcoming fiscal year based on a continuation of the existing level of governmental services.
  2. Force Congress to use GAAP accounting. 
  3. Nothing is “Outside” of the budget process. It ALL has to be accounted for every year.
  4. Hold Congress and the President to the same CRIMINAL penalties for lying about the finances of the country as American businesses.
  5. Require the Federal government to pay off the debt before spending any budget surplus.
  6. Pass a Balanced Budget Amendment.  Make the jerks in Washington toe the line.

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