Cutting spending is the only way

Moreover, the spending crisis is too big to solve by taxing the “rich,” whoever they are. Former congressmen Chris Cox and Bill Archer warn: “When the accrued expenses of the government’s entitlement programs are counted, it becomes clear that to collect enough tax revenue just to avoid going deeper into debt would require over $8 trillion in tax collections annually. That is the total of the average annual accrued liabilities of just the two largest entitlement programs, plus the annual cash deficit.” In contrast, the total adjusted gross income of those earning more than $66,000 a year was $5.1 trillion and net corporate income was $1.6 trillion. Confiscate it all and there still isn’t enough to pay the annual increase. And you could only steal the money once, since people wouldn’t keep working if government left them with nothing. …

The Congressional Budget Office recently published “An Update to the Budget and Economic Outlook: Fiscal Years 2012 and 2022.” The outlook is bleak. For the fourth straight year the annual deficit exceeded one trillion dollars. Accumulated red ink continues to climb: “Federal debt held by the public will reach 73 percent of GDP by the end of this fiscal year—the highest level since 1950 and about twice the 36 percent of GDP that it measured at the end of 2007.”

Next year under CBO’s most favorable estimate the budget deficit would fall to “only” $640 billion. Over the next decade Uncle Sam would pile up another $2.3 trillion worth of debt. The deficit would start climbing again in 2019—for years.