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February 1st, 2010
06:00 PM ET

How would you cut government spending?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

You gotta love it. President Obama is submitting a $3.8 trillion budget. It contains a deficit of $1.6 trillion just for this year. That's an all-time record.

Pres. Obama, flanked by Treasury Sec. Timothy Geithner (L) and White House budget director Peter Orszag, speaks about his proposed $3.8 trillion budget for fiscal year 2011.
Pres. Obama, flanked by Treasury Sec. Timothy Geithner (L) and White House budget director Peter Orszag, speaks about his proposed $3.8 trillion budget for fiscal year 2011.

It will all be done with much hand-wringing about how important it is to get the deficit under control. And they don't think we know any better.

At his State of the Union address, President Obama proposed freezing discretionary federal spending in an effort to save some money. The projection is that this courageous move will amount to a total savings of about $250 billion dollars… over the next ten years. That's one-sixth of the deficit for next year.

The White House claims that the President's budget will reduce the national debt by $1.2 trillion over the next 10 years. That's making a lot of assumptions about how Congress will vote on the parts of the budget designed to reduce the debt. Don't hold your breath.

And they say these things with a straight face…as though we're morons. Maybe we are. We keep electing the same people to Congress who are bankrupting the country.

Last week there was an estimate that the United States will be bankrupt within seven to 10 years. The mightiest economy the world has ever known is going under because the people in Washington refuse to rein in spending. It's an absolute disgrace.

But maybe we can help them.

Here’s my question to you: How would you cut government spending?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Janne from North Carolina writes:
5% off the top of everything. Nothing spared. Then I would charge everyone, from the person making $100 to the person making a billion a 5% deficit tax. No exemptions no exceptions. Last of all, I would require a federal balanced budget amendment. I guarantee by the time we get done paying all of that we would never let our elected officials get so carried away with our money again. Now tell me, does any of that sound complicated?

Michael writes:
If you want to stop spending, cut the empire. We do not need to spend billions of dollars on a military based on the Cold War. China is not going to attack; we owe them too much money.

Casey writes:
I wouldn't, Jack. Not right now at least, not at a time when the government needs to be spending to boost the economy. What the real problem here is that we've been operating under a tax policy for the last decade that refuses to take in enough revenue to cover our budget–or even cut down on the deficit to a substantial degree.

Charlotte from Wilmington, North Carolina writes:
Jack, Your comments are incendiary! People who serve in government are not infallible but it isn't helpful to trash them the way you've been doing tonight. They are the people who are in government now. I'd really like to see us communicate more with our elected officials. I worked on the Hill for years and I know they listen.

Brad from Oakland, California writes:
70% of the federal budget is spent on Social Security, Medicare/Medicaid, National Defense, and interest on the debt. Any Congressional effort to cut the deficit without addressing these programs will be as successful as trying to save a sinking ship by bailing water with a tea cup.

Ali writes:
Jack, It's simple: you fire the government. It's about time for change.


Filed under: Deficit • President Barack Obama
soundoff (300 Responses)
  1. T.Thomas in Abilene Tx.

    He really can't unless he includes entitlements and defense in his plans. None of that real cutting will be done, however.

    February 1, 2010 at 3:08 pm |
  2. Brian Delray Beach, FL

    The President needs the Bush economic team and speech writers more now than ever. They could easily tie a new policy of not disclosing such unfortunate news as bad for the troops, a violation of national security, and/or maybe something simple like:"The no child left behind program tipped things over but deregulation of Wall Street will straighten things out."

    February 1, 2010 at 3:09 pm |
  3. Michael G Tampa, FL

    Jack,
    The question should be, "Why is the President's budget more of the same"?
    He campaigned on "hope and change".
    He has given us neither.
    We need to vote out all incumbents, the President included.
    Career politicians are the problem, at every level of government.
    We need to elect inexperienced, independent people to every office.
    They can't do any worse than those in office.
    Federal spending is insane.
    Congress must cut back ALL spending.
    Federal employment needs to go WAY down.
    The "Stimulus" is a joke. That second runway up in Alaska, the cocaine study for half a million ?
    Earmarks MUST end.
    The Bailout of Banks was a HUGE mistake.
    When Congress de-regulated them 11 years ago, THAT was the beginning of this mess.
    The Federal Government is OUT OF CONTROL !
    Why does Congress have great healthcare and regular Americans have to declare bankruptcy in many cases of healthcare issues ?

    February 1, 2010 at 3:10 pm |
  4. Marty - Texas

    How can you expect anything serious from those whores in Washington. They only get serious when is about to get richer and/or re-elected...
    We need a third party in this country DESPERATELY !!!
    And vote all the incumbents out !!! No re-election for any one over there.

    February 1, 2010 at 3:17 pm |
  5. Dave, Brooklyn, NY

    He can’t. Now if he hadn’t bailed out the billionaire bank CEO’s and given it to the people he said he would help, he might have had a chance.

    February 1, 2010 at 3:19 pm |
  6. Maria

    I believe he is serious about reducing the deficit. I also believe he doesn't have a clue how to do it within confines of the Beltway. Washington D.C. operates like a foreign country, we never have a clue what they are doing, how bills can be passed and never funded, why we need so many congressional committees, who is saying what publicly and then going rogue behind closed doors. It's a place populated by greedy, narsasstic, and out-of-touch w/reality people.

    So as serious as Obama can really be, he hasn't a clue how to get there.

    Hey, Jack, maybe if Hollywood would do Survivors:U.S. Congress they could clear up a lot of the deficit.LOL

    Maria

    Brunswick,MD

    February 1, 2010 at 3:25 pm |
  7. John from Alabama

    Jack: President Obama is serious about job growth, health care reform, and the deficit. But I wonder if your question is a serious one.

    February 1, 2010 at 3:26 pm |
  8. David Bebeau,Springfield Missouri

    Jack
    I do mean to be polite for sure but I have two not very nice things to say that I am sorry that they are the truth.Obama lives for the faaaar left and for Obama.Debt means NOTHING!!! if it furthers his cause.And,any guy who does or would or did follow Pelosi over a cliff if needed to his own parties' demise is NOT serious about very much.
    I do not take pleasure in saying that at all but those are thye facts.
    David

    February 1, 2010 at 3:26 pm |
  9. David in Raleigh, NC

    He's saying what people want to hear. He has no intent of reigning in his Socialist spending and agenda.

    February 1, 2010 at 3:26 pm |
  10. Eugene Northern Cal

    Obama is not serious about saving a penny Jack. It's all a lie. His administration can't even count. Obama talks about saving a few billion dollars but won't start, until after the November election cycle. What dribble. Obama wants to save a billion or so here and there but then turns around and proposes to blow a trillion dollars, in the next breath. Obama is a lame ineffective leader, who will surely bankrupt America, if given a chance.

    February 1, 2010 at 3:28 pm |
  11. J Atlanta

    Right now, Obama, and nobody else for that matter, is at all serious about reducing debt. If those in control were serious, they would dramatically and immediately curtail spending (including on themselves) and dramatically raise taxes (including on themselves) until a balance is reached. The best we can hope from any current American politician in hard times is that they will talk the window dressing, raise taxes a little if at all (excluding on themselves) and cut spending a little (except their own). It will take a genuine disaster, a calamity, a horrible happenstance, a national devastation at historic proportions to get these fools to do the right thing. Until then, they'll talk, insult each other, nibble at the edges and leave the problems for the next guy.

    February 1, 2010 at 3:29 pm |
  12. Russ in PA

    Ha ha ha. Oh, was that a serious question? Well, if Obama were serious about cutting the deficit, then he and Congress should abolish the laws that create unemployment, such as the minimum wage. And then put some effort into closing various departments such as Education, DHS and Energy for starters. Then how about closing down all offshore bases, and moving the military back home? obviously that would dictate that we end all wars. That would be a decent start.

    But Obama is not a serious man, other than when it comes to supporting his favored interest groups, just like other Demo-publiclans...

    February 1, 2010 at 3:30 pm |
  13. M. Nugent

    I think Mr. Obama is in way over his head. It scares me to think what our children and grandchildren have to look forward to. I would like him to stop blaming Bush for everything and stop listening to whoever is advising him and start doing what's been done in the past when we were in recession. ie. Kennedy, Reagan, Clinton and Bush (that means lowering/cutting taxes for everyone). Sarasota, FL

    February 1, 2010 at 3:31 pm |
  14. Ed from MD

    Hey Jack, don't you see how that works yet. Big government can claim anything they want, and deny anything to the contrary. Truth be damned. Power corrupts and absolute power absolutely.

    February 1, 2010 at 3:32 pm |
  15. Jerry, Silver Spring, MD

    Jack, president Obama, just like any other politician, cannot be taken seriously.

    February 1, 2010 at 3:32 pm |
  16. Michael Alexandria, VA

    He can't be and he shouldn't be, Jack. He needs to get money into the pockets of families so that they feel secure about spending. Deficit reduction should only come with comprehensive tax reform. It is not something to do around the edges.

    February 1, 2010 at 3:33 pm |
  17. Bobby - Pontiac, MI

    Jack, if Republicans and Dems can stop playing the blame game, and start working on reducing the budget together then maybe we can reduce the budget a little each year. But That will never happen as long as a Dem is in office. Republicans voted for every thing bush put on the table and where has it gotton us. Now we have Obama and they wont give the man a chance. Republicans only care about their special intrest groups, and a war. So my question to you Jack is, Are the Republicans serious about reducing the budget or are they tring to make the President look bad by not agreeing to anything the President presents to them?

    February 1, 2010 at 3:33 pm |
  18. Adam Simi Valley, CA

    The same way he could claim he wasn't going to raise people's taxes, except the evil "wealthy", while campaigning, Lying.

    February 1, 2010 at 3:34 pm |
  19. Marilyn LaCourt

    If he was serious about reducing our deficit, he'd get us out of Iraq and Afghanistan.
    Marilyn from Wisconsin

    February 1, 2010 at 3:36 pm |
  20. Jeff in E. Lyme, CT

    Here's how Jack:

    By promoting a more fair tax code, i.e. eliminating the Bush tax cuts which only help rich folks get more free money, not the scam GWB tried to run on us saying the dividend exemption is to help poor old Grandma save $45 a year. Let's face it, that was to give millionaires & billionaires and their families tax-free money. Also, by cutting out the subsidied given to insurance companies for providing services that Medicare is all too capable of providing will help. Finally ending the Iraq debacle is another in the plus column. The list goes on. Many small corrections are being worked on even while all the media is reporting on is a few large issues.

    February 1, 2010 at 3:36 pm |
  21. Warren

    He's great! the best at taking both sides on any issue. This satistified the majority for a while, but they are beginning to listen closer and watch for the results.It won't be long now!

    February 1, 2010 at 3:37 pm |
  22. Hugo Kijne

    Obama should not claim to be serious because with the economy where it's at any deficit reduction will inhibit economic recovery. Therefore Obama played it smart and wise when he said that a budget freeze in certain areas would not start until the next fiscal year, after the economy has significantly improved.

    Hoboken, NJ

    February 1, 2010 at 3:39 pm |
  23. Michael H. Mundt

    The only thing that BO2 is serious about is destroying this country.

    February 1, 2010 at 3:41 pm |
  24. Ed from California

    In order to reduce the deficit, you have to have income, in other words taxes. With twenty million out of work and collecting unemployment benefits, and with a huge trade deficit w/ communist China, you're not getting the income to run the government. If he cuts defense spending the republicans will come undone at the seams. Will the middle class stand for a tax increase? I don't think so. Rodger Ailes said Sunday on This Week, "That American sovereignty and security is the first priority. Heath Care and Jobs are not a priority". spoken like a guy w/a job and health care and belonging to the FOX party,sorry....Republican party. So Mr. Obama has to raise taxes on the wealthy. I don't feel sorry for the banker or the Wall st exec, they have been skirting around paying taxes for years.
    If Washington truly feels our pain, why don't they take a pay cut and pay their own health care insurance. That would be a great example of leadership.

    February 1, 2010 at 3:44 pm |
  25. The Broker.

    "He can't! And all you do is build him up, with no real assurance. he keeps saying he's doing, but doing what? Where? How?"

    February 1, 2010 at 3:45 pm |
  26. Randy from Salt Lake City

    But he IS serious -about lying to us.

    February 1, 2010 at 3:48 pm |
  27. Fred R DeLeon SR

    Obama, from The Trivium, he learned and mastered Rhetoric which is the Art of Communication and study of speaking and writing. Obama convinced America once.......he will do it again.....for him, "deficit" is another word he will play with. Obama has become the best, I repeat the best Socialist President. He took the lead over Wilson and FDR. He's got the guts!!! Something most Americans don't have.

    February 1, 2010 at 3:49 pm |
  28. Arlene, Illinois

    Isn't it funny that over a year ago we couldn't wait to get rid
    of Bush and now it seems we want to throw Obama out also.
    Of course I can't count into the trillions as I only have a high
    school education. As my old Dad use to say just print some
    more money.

    February 1, 2010 at 3:49 pm |
  29. Ed From Harrisburg

    Obama may be serious about reducing the deficit, but he is proving to be just as incompetent as George Bush was in managing the businesses he bankrupted before he nearly bankrupted the country and he was serious after he stopped drinking. The fact of the matter is that we are moving away from capturing the best and brightest as our leaders. All have been failures in the arenas they are trying to prove they have leadership. It's the Peter Principle in play and we are encouraging it with our votes and support. Obama may be serious; but the real question is, does he have the competency to do it?

    February 1, 2010 at 3:52 pm |
  30. Robin Blair

    They don't care about how people are hurting. In fact, I think they are creating this economic crisis on purpose - to drive more and more people into government dependence to usher in full blown socialism and Marxism. Why? They are decieved by false gods - power, affluance, prestige - all of whic are fostered and/or promoted by forces of absolute evil.

    February 1, 2010 at 3:52 pm |
  31. Russ in Johnston

    He is not serious about it. He and the Democratic party will spend all the money they can to get their political agenda into play.

    February 1, 2010 at 3:56 pm |
  32. meg

    I have no idea -but Jack maybe you could help him set up a task force with some suggestions to lower it to 1.59 billion.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:00 pm |
  33. Einstein Mastermind

    (The great masqueraders hidden in our society.) Dear Jack and gang: Obama new economic plan is doomed before it even gets off the ground. The international money mongers that have a strangle hold on the financial jugular vein off this country are not going to let it happen. These bore worms that we have aloud to take hold of are major corporations, Federal Reserve Bank and others will require major surgery to eradicate these parasites from this country. These powers that like to travel under the name of the (G.O.P, and chant the slogan free enterprise).These internationalist are doing everything possible to see that Obama fails and looks like a fool. All of these rats should be shareing the same cell with Bernie Maddoff, as they are all cousins, the great masqueraders, the term hook nosed bore worm money monger rats, is a very fitting descriptive phrase. Another no brainer from Einstein Mastermind.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:04 pm |
  34. S, Michigan

    By cutting Medicare and Medicaid- cut several entitlement programs and see how the deficit falls.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:05 pm |
  35. Jim in Toledo Ohio

    He can't unless he includes entitlements and defense in the equation.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:07 pm |
  36. James Wardlaw

    Reagan debt 3 trillion,Bush I 2.5 trillion debt, Clinton 2 billion dollar debt, George II added 10 trilion. Debt is real. Deficit is a prediction and changes daily. Please will you explain the difference to the public the difference between "debt " and "deficit". Obama's deficit is helping the recovery and fighting to really stupid wars. Bushes debt went to the wealthy, and into savings elimination the "multiplier effect".

    February 1, 2010 at 4:10 pm |
  37. Rick McDaniel

    Well, obviously......he isn't serious. He just wants to give enough rhetoric to the concept, to delude the public into thinking he is addressing the problem, while at the same time expanding the deficit by significant amounts.

    Despite the fact, he obviously thinks the public are complete idiots, we do recognize what he is doing, however, and November is coming up, in the not so distant future.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:12 pm |
  38. James Wardlaw

    Please explain to the public, and half the pundits, the difference between "debt and deficit. The last three Republican Presidents created a 10 trillion debt, Clinton 2 billion surplus, and Obama must use deficit spending to save the country.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:17 pm |
  39. Paul Round Rock, Texas

    He has made a start by putting Nasa on hold for the Moon project. We have to many problems down here on Earth to keep our heads in the sky for now. He will need to present his plan to us all and what departments of the government will face cuts in order to keep the others still up and running. If anyone can make a point clear it is Obama. Then he and us all will have live with it and see how it all comes out in the end and if it was the right plan.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:17 pm |
  40. Joanne B

    Simply put, he can't Jack ! He lives in a different world from what we've observed.
    Joanne B
    Mn

    February 1, 2010 at 4:19 pm |
  41. BOB WHITE, Kansas

    For Obama to reduce the national deficit, he will need to get re-elected to a second term. If he moves too soon to tighten gov't spending, the economy will stall-out and delay the recovery that has just begun. And, the wealthy corporations and individuals will be required to pay progressively higher taxes than the common wage-earner which Obama has already initiated.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:20 pm |
  42. Richard, Syracuse

    Tell each and every Agency that they must find a 10 to 12% deduction in their costs. Then each and every Agency, turns to each and every department and demand they find 10 to 12% etc, etc.

    Add to that the idea we should NOT be sending Egypt Untold Millions all the time, or any other Country on this Planet, unless it is a Natural Emergency. When the US has to cut programs for its own people, we do NOT send money to other countries to buy their friendship.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:23 pm |
  43. Joanne B

    Cut all the programs by 5%.
    Dismantle the Commerce Dept (it is useless). Send Census to another Dept.
    Cut Federal Employee pay by 15%, cut pensions to Federal empoyees by 20%.
    Stop paying 20 times the value of products , Fed Gov't is nuts what they pay.

    GO AFTER THE FRAUD....THERE ARE BILLIONS TO BE HAD THERE.
    Joanne
    Mn

    February 1, 2010 at 4:26 pm |
  44. Max

    I notice that the trillion dollar deficits that George Bush ran up were never a big issue, but Obama's are. I would expect nothing less. Obama is trying to reduce the deficit by cutting costs in areas that we don't need, even if he is spending a lot in areas we do. He is compromising on a health care bill that the CBO says will reduce the deficit, he cut programs like moon exploration and the F-22 as well. Reducing the deficit is tricky, especially in a bad economy. The war in Iraq will be winding in the next few years, and that will have a huge effect as well. The point is that we have had a monster deficit for a long time, and its going to take time to shrink it. Give Obama a chance, he has had one year in office to tackle health care, the worst economy in decades, two wars and a huge deficit on top of that. If Obama tried to cut the deficit by a really large amount right now what would he cut? Medicare? Defense? Making the kind of cuts that would bring the deficit down significantly would be catastrophic. Give the economy a little time to recover and then make the big cuts that need to be made.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:29 pm |
  45. Jacques

    Easily Jack,

    If I had magical powers like Samantha from Be-witched, I would twinkle my noise and reverse eight years of Bush and Cheney who got us into this mess.......and cut out the othe Republicans who helped.

    Other then that Obama is on a good start, lets hope his own party does not stand in the way!!

    February 1, 2010 at 4:31 pm |
  46. Tom Prebis

    Its rather simple, really; President Obama is reducing the Huge amount of waste the government has just written off under the present system...he will save money by improving the EFFICIENCY of the method that the government operates! My name is Pronounced like 'Preebis,' and I am writing from Medina, just south of Cleveland, Ohio.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:33 pm |
  47. Joe CE

    Rmove the cap on Soicial Security but keep the maximum benefit aqt thje present level (adjusted as usual). This would make SS self-supporting forever. It would remove the biggest chiunk of entitlement spending now cauasing a project deficit.

    I would also set a national fund for debt retirement. I would suggest a 1 billion federal appropriatiob for start=up. A federally charted, non-profit Corporation with 6 private sector directore plus the VP, Secretary of Treasury, and Chairman of the Federal Reserve. Managed by he Treasury Dept. It would be supported by semi-annual appeals for public contriburions utilizing public sevice advertisement. The rules woul be that one half of the earnings would be used to reitre the debt (but only if the federaql budget is within 16% ofr balance) and the remainder reinvested. Investiment would be 50% in US securities, 30% in state & local bonds, and 20% in US businesses.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:36 pm |
  48. Carl

    Jack,
    This question is just pure fantasy. It's hard to regulate spending when our idiots in government dictate the hours they work and also there pay raises. so, this will never happen. This is likethe Fox guarding the Hen house.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:36 pm |
  49. Greg in Cabot, AR

    Cut Congressional pay to reflect work accomplished.

    Most American workers wouldn't get a pay check if all they did was argue for months at a time and blame somebody else for the lack of progress.

    This wouldn't save much money but would sure make me feel better when I cash my unemployment check. I used to work hard until I got "down sized" because of this recession. If they had their pay threatened, maybe they might finally "get it" and get something done.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:38 pm |
  50. Sabrina

    First, make congress live on what my son, a single parent with 2 childern, has to live on, $694.00 per month. They gave themselves a cost of living raise and told the disabled you don't need one.

    Bet that would do alot for the budget.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:38 pm |
  51. Pete

    Easy.
    First, replace the entire House and Senate with American housewives who have more common sense and decency in their little fingers than the total bodies of corrupt thieves now ruining our country.
    Next, have term limits on EVERY office in Federal Govt., including the Supreme Court.
    Then, completely delete ALL entitlement programs with a Constitutional Ammendment....................... and start over.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:41 pm |
  52. Janne from NC

    5% off the top of everything. Nothing spared. Then I would charge everyone, from the person making $100.00 to the person making a billion a 5% deficit tax. No exemptions no exceptions. Last of all I would require a federal balanced budget ammendment. I guarantee by the time we get done paying all of that we would never let our elected officials get so carried away with our money again. Now tell me, does any of that sound complicated ?

    February 1, 2010 at 4:46 pm |
  53. Floyd Burgess

    It seems Congress has given itself a blank check. I do not spend money when my bank account reads zero, or I can't afford to pay off a loan. We probably need an Amendment to make our run away Congress live within its means. Then we need a law to throw the bums in jail when they do not abide by the Amendment.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:47 pm |
  54. Lee Allender

    1st) I would take away pay raise that Congres & Senators got in Jan 2009. They did not deserve .
    2nd) I would make all Goverment have to serve 20 yrs, Especially Congress & Senators to receive pension & benifits.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:47 pm |
  55. Bizz, Quarryville, Pennsylvania

    Jack you would need a magic wong that you could wave and replace the entire Congress with people who put their country first and politics second that can work well with others. Then you would have to waive the magic wong and get rid of all the special interest groups and lobbyist so Congress can work in peace with no outside influence. Last but not least you would need a president with line item veto powers whose main purpose is get people back to work and bring down the deficit.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:47 pm |
  56. john ..... marlton, nj

    Just say no ......!! Cut everything across the board ....

    February 1, 2010 at 4:47 pm |
  57. Ray in Nashville

    These aren't in order of importance:

    1 – Get us out of Iraq and Afghanistan.
    2 – Halt all foreign aid.
    3 – Cut the budgets of all departments by a minimum of 10%.
    4 – Reform welfare.
    5 – Remove the legislature from the government employees benefits program and let them begin to pay their own insurance and other such perks.
    6 – End the automatic cost of living adjustment that Congress voted themselves several years ago. If they think they deserve a raise, let them take a public vote on it.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:47 pm |
  58. Mark

    By making seats in Congress, both the House and Senate, Part-time jobs with NO benefits and ten bucks an hour.

    Mark
    Oklahoma City

    February 1, 2010 at 4:48 pm |
  59. Paul P

    Is this a serious question, Jack? I can think of at least two wars that are costing the nation close to a billion dollars a day. Not to mention troops spread out all over the world that by bringing them home would make short work of the deficit issue.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:49 pm |
  60. elizabeth of sacramento

    Cut anything that doesn't help the economy except health & welfare for children , seniors & the disabled.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:49 pm |
  61. Elizabeth from Toronto

    That's a poppycock question Cafferty. Given all the debt that was already there left by the previous Administration, plus a financial system that was busted!, lost jobs, and a confusing and you know purposely complicated Health Care System to keep folks focus on their own benefits and care about no one else's or rising Heath Care costs, and global humanitarian issues that need US dollars the only way to move forward is to spend government money to get the economy working. Where else is he going to get money? Not the Banks! not the Pharmaceutical companies they just take it! and no one wants to invest in US right now. Instead of gripping, folks need to start thinking positively about being in debt for a while – consider it's like taking out a mortgage to buy a house and later you own the house. You get ripped off by the Banks as usual but eventually if you make all your payments and you own the house.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:51 pm |
  62. Jerry Johns Creek, GA

    One thing we could do is to bring all of our troops back home who are not engaged in Afghanistan or Iraq. Does Germany really need US Military bases? We have to give up the role of being the World Cop and concentrate on our own country. There is tremendous opportunity to review the duplication of effort that is represented by the unbelievably huge bureaucracies we have. Require a separate vote for every pork barrel addition that is contained in any bill with a data recording of how each member votes so they can be monitored.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:52 pm |
  63. M from NY

    Freeze the salaries of all politicians and their staff until the deficit no longer exists. No more free trips disguised as "fact finding missions." If the politicians want to go on vacation, let them pay for the trips with their own money.

    Curb financial aid to other nations until our nation is fixed. Charity begins at home.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:53 pm |
  64. Kris in Ohio

    Salary and cost-of-living increases across the board, to start. Then on to medicare/medicaid; I would cut anything not necessary to life out of them. Social Security should be frozen and people reminded that it was never meant to be the sole source of income for anybody. Every program should be cut by 10% and frozen at those levels until the budget is in balance. Travel budgets should be set and adhered to for every member of the government. All farm subsidies should be abandoned.
    In short I would cut the federal budget to the bare bones until we have bought our debt, and I mean debt not deficit, down to no more than 10% GDP in any normal year. And that debt I would allow only domestic entities to purchase.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:54 pm |
  65. Ken from Maryland

    Give the President the Line Item Veto. Then he can cut all the earmarks that Congress approves.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:54 pm |
  66. Agnes from Scottsdale, AZ

    Jack: I'd cut government spending on programs that are not vital to our defense or social needs looking out over the next 5+ years. Instead of shutting down the space programs transfer many of those skills to renewable energy projects. How about applying some of the NASA brain power to inventing more eneregy efficient cars – in Michigan. It's time to reinvent ourselves.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:56 pm |
  67. Kyle, Irvine, CA

    Jack,
    I would cut every government program that is not producing results as much as Congress would let me (and with this Congress that would be tough). Then once we fill the gap at the bottom of the bucket, I would cut taxes all across the board and show the opposing side once and for all that raising taxes is not always the answer.

    February 1, 2010 at 4:57 pm |
  68. Maria

    I'd go in and eliminate as many mid-managers as possible. I would review every single department, one at a time, evaluate each department's departments and shut down those that are just duplicating work, or are not producing any viable, important work at all.

    I would eliiminate money for changing office decorations every time a new person came in to replace someone going out. I would meet with every employee in every office of the gov't and find out from them where they see waste and duplication. It soulnds like a lengthy procress but working 60 hrs a week, I'd move fairly quickly.

    I'd update methods of communications (esp the type of systemw/ Cheney bugging the Prez office unit) which may or may not still be in play. There would be no more Congressional junkets like Pelosi's trip to Copenhagen. I would put together a team of university internships, who,working only for the experience, would aid me in that work.

    If I heard 'well, we've always done it this way and it works fine,' they would be have a target on their backs immediately to prove themselves right and me wrong. Time management would be a big issue, as lack of such leads to chaos and little hands getting money when they shouldn't be.

    Actually, this could be the best job I ever had!

    Maria

    Brunswick,MD

    February 1, 2010 at 4:59 pm |
  69. Karen, Idaho Falls

    I would ground Air Force One and insist that the President do all of his business from the Oval Office. With all the modern technology available, this should not be difficult.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:00 pm |
  70. Ben in Maryland

    Stop paying the health care premiums of Congress.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:00 pm |
  71. Tony from Southport

    Well, we could start by not paying the Presideent of the United States. Only someone who doesn't need a paycheck can ever achieve that office anyway.

    Next, Congress should be required to get the same benefits as the American people. Social Security only and NO lifetime medical benefits. Medicare is good enough for them if it's good enough for us.

    Next, every Congressional earmark should be up for a vote by the American people. No vote... no earmark. This one should save BILLIONS.

    NO BAILOUTS. You fail... you file for bankrupcy. Do it right and you won't fail. NO mega loans to people who can't afford to pay them back. Those who pressured the banks to give the iffy loans shouldn't be in charge of fixing the problem.... Barney Franks comes to mind.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:01 pm |
  72. Alex in Seattle

    Since nobody can agree on what to cut, why not raise taxes to what they were under Reagan. The rich got soaked in the 90% tax bracket, but seemed to survive.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:02 pm |
  73. Richard Moore

    I think no politican should make more than the average american does. What after two terms they get there retirement now thats bs. Its like the state of michigan after 10 years of working with the state you get your retirement and then you go back to work for the state and make full pay again. Soldiers serve 20 years whats wrong with this picture. thanks for hearing me out. Rich

    February 1, 2010 at 5:04 pm |
  74. Brian Smith PhD

    Is it too simplistic to consider shutting down Washington all together? Simply let the State legislatures take over any and all U.S. Government resources within each State’s boundaries. The Federal government is broken as it is. Nothing gets accomplished. Further, Washington has spent us into ruin. I can well imagine individual States will form regional commonwealths. It would be one heck of a way to completely clear the decks and start over.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:04 pm |
  75. stillonline

    Eliminate all private military contractors. ALL of them. Under the Bush Cheney reign of terror – we created a private army for Cheney. These criminals kill civilians for fun, take starving children in war torn countries and turn them into sex slaves, imprison and gang rape women employees and and behave like savages.

    Get rid of Blackwater, now known as Xe, KBR and Halliburton. They have made billions as war profiteers and are the major reason Americans are hated.

    Those jobs can be done by our underpaid, disciplined, patriotic soldiers.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:04 pm |
  76. Cheryl in Bluffton, SC

    Bring our troops home, legalize and tax marijuana, negotiate lower prices for the Medicare drug benefit, break up the banks that are "too big to fail" and sell them shares of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and raise taxes on the super-rich to pre-Bush levels. That ought to do it.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:04 pm |
  77. David Gerstenfeld

    "It's not the spending stupid, it's the waste". Start with decreasing medicare fraud. Increase the penalties to make fraud less inviting. Revoke medical licenses, sue doctors & clinics, & stop writing checks to anyone that submits a medicare claim before verifying. Medicare fraud as far as I'm concerned is voluntary manslaughter.
    David, Las Vegas

    February 1, 2010 at 5:05 pm |
  78. Greg in PA

    First I would fire Obama and Biden, then can I Pelosi and Ried, that would save us trillions of dollars!

    February 1, 2010 at 5:06 pm |
  79. Max Fairview, Texas

    First we get rid of all congresses healthcare for themselves and their families. Next we enact a line item veto. No pork added after the fact to bills. We have to develop a formal immigration plan that actively deports those illegally in this country rapidly and has harsh punishment for repeat violators. Along with that we need to adopt the E- Verify system nation wide to verify who is here legally and who may work legally. Those without legal verification must be refused employment or the company owner is fined and or goes to prison for hiring them. Non-violent prisoners need to be allowed to do the work illegal aliens have been doing to learn a skill and pay back into society. They can be given a reduction in sentence in exchange for actively working instead of sitting on their butts in jail watching TV. This would reduce jail sentences saving millions of dollars each year nation wide. We must control our borders and stop this mass migration to America. It is killing our economy. One more idea is a values tax on everything except bulk food. That way everyone pays into tax equally, not just the middle class and wealthy. If you consume you pay period and then do away with Federal Income tax system all together.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:07 pm |
  80. Wilhelm von Nord Bach

    GET the HELL out of Iraq and Afghanistan, Jack.

    AND the United States needs to STOP being the "World Police", the "World's Doctor" and the "World's Grocer". do THAT and the American govenment would probably cut their yearly expenditures by half.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:08 pm |
  81. marion/Birmingham,al

    An across the board freeze,There are plenty of wasteful programs that need to be rolled back also,Like Headstart for kids,It does not work proof is in the testing of 4th graders,but we waste billions on it any way.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:09 pm |
  82. Zack

    I would start out cutting out all ear marks.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:09 pm |
  83. David in San Diego

    I would reduce the budget deficits by cutting district-greasing military procurement, demanding that Japan and NATO pick up more of the costs of our bases there, AND increasing marginal tax rates on relatively high-income individuals and couples: perhaps individual returns above $200,000 and joint returns above $350,000 back to where they were before the deficit-busting Bush tax cuts. I would rather save our counrty than be a two-term President, if it comes to that.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:09 pm |
  84. Penny, Bellvue WA

    Cut all corporate welfare.

    No Import/Export Bank (if it's a good deal, a private bank will provide loans), no agricultural subsidies (that mostly go to Big Agribusiness and not mom and pop farms), no tax deductions for job-killing business decisions like opening factories in other countries, no more free drilling for oil in national parks by big oil companies (royalties to the gov't. should be 50% of the the barrel price on the spot market), and so on.

    Republicans will squeal about cutting spending this way, but that's where the real money is, not in Head Start programs.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:10 pm |
  85. Joseph

    Reduce benefits and perks for members of Congress.

    Joe in Delray Beach, FL

    February 1, 2010 at 5:10 pm |
  86. Chris in Atlanta

    Why not start with making every elected and appointed official an unpaid position. They can all rent their offices and pay for their own office supplies; that’ll cut down on the 1000 plus page bills that don't do anything and end up costing tax payers billions. Then we start a speech cap, any member of congress that talks for more than 5 minutes pays a $100 a minute, in cash, for each minute after that. The way those idiots talk and generate paper we can have the debt paid off and cut taxes in half in a year or two, and maybe get something done in the process!

    February 1, 2010 at 5:10 pm |
  87. Bob

    For starters, give the president line item veto power along with making earmarks illegal..then start bringing back our troops stationed in foreign countries...why do we need permanent bases in Japan 65 years after the war ended, to deter the Chinese?...Big business won't allow hostilities with them-might affect the bottom line!.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:11 pm |
  88. Laurie in Lawrence, KS

    I don't think I would be too worried about cutting government spending just yet. I am more concerned about getting the economy back on track – people getting jobs, keeping their houses, paying their bills. Those things are immediate. The deficit isn't. A good economy will help fix the deficit. I'm very disappointed in Obama. He isn't doing anything for the middle class, and he has surrounded himself with bad advisors.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:13 pm |
  89. D/St Louis

    Frankly, I would cut the pay of nonproductive elected officials.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:14 pm |
  90. Kathy in in Tulsa Okla.

    I would begin by reviewing all of our overseas commitments-military bases( closing most) and foreign aid (stopping most).Well, ask a silly question-.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:15 pm |
  91. Bud Rupert, Reston, VA

    FIRE ALL THE CONGRESSMAN AND SENATORS to start with. Let Barak run the entire federal government – and from scratch if need be.

    Jack – It's clear, after seeing Barak interact with the Republicans in Baltimore last Friday that when it comes to smarts, common sense and wanting to get things done – It's no contest! And they know it too.

    He is the sharpest person in the room – by a mile.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:18 pm |
  92. M.K.

    eliminate congress, and when ever the legislative branch needs attention, select them from the general public like the grand jury. Ditto with the Supreme court, and replace the President with a multi member commission like most counties. Do the same with state legislators and Governors.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:20 pm |
  93. julia

    f Bring all of our troups home from around the world and put some of them on our Mexican border. We can't go on protecting the rest of the world.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:22 pm |
  94. ken brick, nj

    I would cut defense 20%, eliminate the education department, merge the housing department with health, merge energy with transportation, eliminate all nasa space flights, eliminate all farm aid, merge agriculture with commerce, pull 90% of our military out of europe, korea, japan, kuwait, iraq and afghanistan, merge medicaid with medicare, count homes and ira accounts as assets and income for medicaid eligibility, raise medicare rates for incomes above 100k, eliminate all corporate deductions, abolish all k street and corporate donations, and abolish the federal reserve.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:23 pm |
  95. Chris - Ottawa, Canada

    Legalizing marijuana. That way they'll be less people in jail

    February 1, 2010 at 5:23 pm |
  96. Chaney. Louisiana

    Jack there would be no safe havens if I had the budget axe, you could'nt hear the sound of your voice for the screams. All depts would no longer have unlimited use of gov. vehicles, limits on all Congressional expense accounts, and travel. All departments would have to reduce spending, and NO earmarks. for a start.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:24 pm |
  97. marlene in mich

    I would cut all spending, 5% across the board, plus cut federal wages ( including elected officials) 5%. Let do something now to make a difference.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:25 pm |
  98. Ed from MD

    Cut spending by eliminating all the Fools Errands the government embarks on. Trying to write laws for every aspect of human activity, managing every aspect of the economy, vainly attempting to protect against all hazards. I can't decide what's worse Big Brother or Big Mother. Oh, easy on the bombs too.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:25 pm |
  99. Molita from Texas

    Get rid of lawyers running this country, lobbyists who influence them, dissolve the illegal IRS & the Federal Reserve Bank. That's a start. Stop American companies from outsourcing EVERYTHING & place regulations on imports. The same rules imposed on US citizens (like using pesticides on produce grown in US yet NOT on imports!?) And why has all of US business gone overseas? No regulation & huge profits. Stop it!
    Oh & stop taxing the little people! Taxes are as illegal as IRS.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:27 pm |
  100. Dennis North Carolina

    the president should have a line by line veto power which congress would have correct in their spending bills.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:28 pm |
  101. JP Murphy

    an across the board hiring freeze in all federal, state, municipal agencies, including the staffs of all elected officials.

    an immediate review of all entitlement programs, beginning with unfunded mandates. Begin with a freeze on any increase in these budget items, analyze each thoroughly and determine their effectiveness. Those that are ineffective, stop funding immediately and allow the programs to expire..

    remove all pension liabilities, current and future, for all elected officials, and replace with 401k accounts.

    immediate freeze on all taxpayer funded travel by house and senate members.

    perform a "recall" of all elected officials who refuse to substantively reduce actual spemding, and return this money to the taxpayers.

    shall I continue?

    February 1, 2010 at 5:29 pm |
  102. Jim in Alabama

    I would increase jobs for oversight on medicaid and medicare first of all and make a big dent in corruption and mismanagement. That would result in a significant decrease in spending for these two programs. Next, I would put a brake on discretionary spending and earmarks. These two cuts and increased oversight would greatly cut expenses to the government IMO. Oh yes, finally, I would demand that other countries do their part in fighting terrorism and spread the cost around some.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:31 pm |
  103. Jim, Chicago, IL

    Let's make the Congress a part time job. They get one month in the Spring to write the House and Senate bills and one month in the summer to combine them into one final bill. Then they come back between Thanksgiving and Christmas to vote. We make the Senators and Congress men and women try to get real jobs for the other nine months so they know what it is like to actually earn a living. Finally, we rent out the Capitol Building to people who do real work. Just think of what we could save.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:31 pm |
  104. David in GA

    Lower the cost of Medicare by getting the insurance companies hands out of the pot and by purchasing medicines from the low bidders,

    Thanks to the Repubs we are prohibited from doing either. Then they complain about costs,

    David ib GA

    February 1, 2010 at 5:31 pm |
  105. Richard Moore

    I dad use to work at a state prison and he use to say the prisoners have more than what we had. Great medical, pretty good food and cable. And why do they get all this?

    February 1, 2010 at 5:32 pm |
  106. Sandra in Temecula, CA

    Cut lifelong Welfare and force these people to get a job and support themselves, instead of paying them to have children and more children for more money. Cut any and all benefits provided to those in this country illegally. Cut free school lunch programs. Cut the street sweeper out of state budgets. Cut all the ridiculous research funding, like studying why pigs stink. Cut politicians free spending on things like $3,000.00 towards flowers for Ms. Pelosi in a 5 month period. Take away her use of the private jet and their meal tickets, hotel bills, etc.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:32 pm |
  107. Richard Moore

    My dad use to work at a state prison and he use to say the prisoners have more than what we had. Great medical, pretty good food and cable. And why do they get all this?

    February 1, 2010 at 5:33 pm |
  108. Al Bledsoe in Dallas

    Jack, why don't you put each line item on your show and have us all weigh in on cut or pass? Of course, you get to spin your own cut or pass bias and if you are a genius and get everyone to agree with your cuts maybe you could be another Ronald Reagan or something. (Did Reagan shrink or grow the deficit? Hmmmm.)

    February 1, 2010 at 5:33 pm |
  109. Dan, Chantilly VA

    Let's start by cutting the size of the House in half. Why do we need to pay that many people to not represent us?

    February 1, 2010 at 5:33 pm |
  110. MNResident

    I would start by eliminating the taxpayer paid military flights for Speaker Nancy Pelosi's family to and from San Francisco, then eliminate President Obama's "date nights' with $100 per pound imported Japanese beef and flights of fancy to see Broadway shows and those overseas congressional "fact finding" missions to Denmark and the Vatican. It's only a small start, but it's a REAL start.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:34 pm |
  111. JIM,Virginia

    First,i would start by not spending what has not already been spent with the so called stimulus package. Next, the tarp funds either paid back by banks or monies not spent would go to reducing the debt.Next,all members of Congress would get their pay cut in half and no salaries increased until they start doing the nation's business.The spending freeze would take effect immediately ,not wait until next year.And,it would be across the board so that everyone would share the pain.Most of foreign aid should be stopped,we are hated by most of the countries we give money to..Support for U.N. should be cut now. Tell them the gravy train is over.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:35 pm |
  112. Layne Alleman

    Jack, I'd start my day over at the G.A.O., going thru say, 20 or more years of government subsidies, earmarks, procurements, and other assorted "discretionary" spending. The MOUNDS of available information has to be staggering (not to mention the amount "unavailable"). I "Feel your Pain", brother Jack, but guess who's caused this mess over the years? All those wonderful businesses, Fat-cats, and yes, each and every voter across this great land of ours who were brought up to believe that you can get "something for nothing" (or at least someone else's money). Layne A. Antioch, Il.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:37 pm |
  113. Gil Gamesh Pyramid Lake,NV

    Wrong question again Jack,
    Most believe that the dollar has a specific Value...
    .....IT DOES NOT.
    there was a time that it did, but the Voodo Economist of the G.O.P.
    thought that was foolish, and bridled us to an anti Market Economy.
    Today the Dollar is based upon "Full Faith and Credit" and nothing else.
    a Dollar has a Value of 100 units of 1, and that unit is called a Penny.
    what penny are We now talking about?
    a 1937 Penny, or a 2010 Penny?
    That value must change Daily, Weekly, and Yearly, by Economic pressures.
    One of these "Natural Pressures" is Inflation.
    these same Voodo economist have tried to stop Inflation, but to what end?, and to benefit Whom?
    it surely wasn't for the poor, nor Middle class.
    Most were led down the path by pied Pipers, of Economic Ruin, screaming Free Markets, Free Markets!
    Yet it was them who enslaved a so called "Free Market" for their own gain.
    and now are convincing most Americans to empower them to even more Chaos.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:42 pm |
  114. Jim Carroll

    CREATE JOBS, JOBS, JOBS BY SHARING THE WORK

    Now is the time to cut the work week from 40 hours to 36 hours per week.If 90% of the work force can produce all the goods and services needed, it is time to reduce the number of hour per week worked by 10%. The work ought to be shared by all the people who want to work. Making a living for oneself or a family is the most important thing in life; it comes before God or Country. If one does not have the right to make a living, what good is any right? Instead of big businesses storing huge profits as just numbers on a computer chip,which is like putting money under a mattress, which doesn't create jobs by moving goods and services: the real wealth of a nation; they should share it with more workers, instead of milking more sweat out of fewer people.
    Businesses should be required to pay time and one half for all hours worked over 36 hr. per week and double time for time worked over 40 hours per week. Why shouldn't businesses be required to help support a Reserve–Retraining Work Force? Instead of unemployed people drawing unemployment benefits, they would be paid to go back to school which would include school cost and health insurance. Businesses and Governments would pay the cost. All the schools both private and public would be used.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:43 pm |
  115. david doherty

    It's to obvious Jack, stop spending billions on two wars that should never have been waged. I hate to say it Jack, but after 9/11, how many innocent lives would have been saved if we just took our lumps. Some times the smart thing too do is just walk away.

    Dave from Peterborough, NH.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:47 pm |
  116. Doug - Dallas, TX

    Fire all of Congress, don't give their replacements a blank checkbook, require them to account for all of the money they spend and run the government like a business with no borrowing allowed. Get out of the two wars we are in NOW and eliminate most of the government giveaways and entitlement programs. The deficit would be gone in less than 10 years.

    The reality is unless we take hard measures to rein in spending this country will go bankrupt and we do not have 10 years to do it.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:49 pm |
  117. Wynona Ely Atlanta, Georgia

    Cafferty, The bulk of the deficit is WARS in Iraq and Afganistan, Skyrocketing heatlhcare costs with Medicare and Medicaid and UNEMPLOYMENT which is the cause of the massive red ink. Until the politicans get serious about deficit reduction with spending and huge tax cuts we can't afford, the debt will continue to climb.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:50 pm |
  118. Ben from Boston

    Jack,

    Here are a few ideas:

    1. I would allow the trustees of federal trust funds to invest in the private sector - not in single companies but in a diversified, high quality bundle of stocks and bonds - over the long haul such bundles grow faster than the gdp.

    2. I would restrict all federal social programs to U.S. citizens and give non citizens who are currently receiving benefits a gradual decline in their benefit level.

    3. I would require all federal departments and agencies (other than military and law enforcement) to reduce their personnel by 2% per year for the next 10 years or get a 10% cut in their administrative budget for any year in which they failed to meet the goal.

    4. I would not have any new bureaucracies associated with health care or other entitlement reform.

    5. I would add a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution.

    Fat chance any of this will ever happen!

    Ben

    February 1, 2010 at 5:51 pm |
  119. Stan Ward

    Sadly, under the present system there are too many "entitlements"- only about 12% of budget can be subject to reduction! I would not put Social Security in the entitlement category because individuals and businesses who have paid into this could have gotten greater return on passbook saving on their own- but that"s another story.

    We can start by putting congess on commission or pay them by the pieces of legislation that maintain or reduce the deficit. I would call for a national referendum to unbundle the budget.

    People in the States may not feel the inflation crawl that is linked to overspending. But we who have witnessed the dollars decline abroad and must live on it feel the effect immediately. Stan in Budapest

    February 1, 2010 at 5:51 pm |
  120. Darrren

    Quit allowing them to give themselves a raise every year would be a good place to start and weed out ALL pet projects so our elected offisials can focus on The People's needs instead of their district's or Big Business' needs.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:51 pm |
  121. Brian

    An obvious place to start would be our military spending. Thats not to say we should reduce our overall military strength. We should focus on defending our nation, while putting a halt on our campaign of nation building imperialism.

    Auburn, AL

    February 1, 2010 at 5:51 pm |
  122. Joanne Burt

    1. NO more earmarks - that means NONE, ZERO
    2. Cut Obama's plan for Pell grants. In fact ELIMINATE Pell grants
    3. Eliminate Obama's plan to forgive student loans - in fact I bet that isn't even in his budget. That will fall on the taxpayers 20 years down the road.
    4. Social Security should begin at age 70, not age 65 or even 62. Medicare should begin at age 70 also. This is drastic but so is our debt. Honestly now, people are living 20 years longer than when 65 was desginated as retirement age and they can be productive way past 70. Be brave. Do something meaningful to cut the deficit.
    5. Cut Congressional pay and benefits by 10%. They deserve it.
    6. Give some common sense, strong women (from anywhere but inside the beltway) a red pencil and the budget. I predict a reduction of 15% or more.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:52 pm |
  123. Terry C. in Illinois

    Cut off spending for 2 wars and then spend only on our border, ports and airline security, SAVE BILLIONS...
    Cut out being the worlds police, SAVE TRILLIONS...
    Cut NASA , nobody cares whats on the moon, SAVE TRILLIONS...
    Cut off giving money to countries who do not support us, SAVE BILLIONS...
    Cut Congressional trips unless approved by voters since its our taxes that pays for it, SAVE MILLIONS...
    Cut Wage increases for government workers 2 years including Congress, SAVE MILLIONS...
    Cut Federal tax dollars to states that do not want healthcare overhaul and let the red states buy they own medical plans, SAVE BILLIONS...

    February 1, 2010 at 5:52 pm |
  124. Mr. D

    It's the old shell game, but it's getting to the point where there will be nothing under any of the shells. Let the Federal government do what the states are doing-cutting services, reducing employees, closing parks, cutting welfare, etc. It is time the Federal government plays by the rules like the states and their citizens have to do.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:53 pm |
  125. Viv from NY

    If you want to stuimilate the economy you have to spend .
    Obama actually is only responsible for a small portion of the fiscal 2009 deficit . The tax cuts Bush gave us added "more than $2 trillion in debt, add to it the wars . Consider what would have happened if the U.S. government had tried to balance their budgets, if they had refused to rescue the distressed financial institutions, we would be in a Depression – So Jack perhaps lighten up and be glad Obama prevented the train wreck which was coming.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:53 pm |
  126. Robert Johnson Northern MN

    Freeze discretionary spending AFTER taking out the 20 percent increase that was added last year. Require that all recovered TARP funds, including interest, be applied to debt service rather than being spent elsewhere.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:55 pm |
  127. Lonjina Treat

    1. Stop all the pork. Do not allow all of the 'add ons' to bills that jack up the cost by millions and millions. 2. Elect a conservative to the Presidency. 3. Remove Nancy Palosi from position 4. Stop health care reform. 4. No cap and spend 5. No TARP 6. Stop the bail outs. 6. Allow off shore drilling without the harsh restrictions to 20-30% wind power. 7. Stop support of global warming – it is a farce. 8. Analyze all foreign subsidies – cease giving to any country that does not support my country in their democracy and freedom. Etc. Etc. Etc. Truly it does not take an Einstein to see where Obama's policies are taking this country – INTO ABSOLUTE RUIN. HE MUST BE STOPPED.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:55 pm |
  128. Joe M

    Jack,

    I would make every earmark and the people behind it accountable by publishing the information as it is passed. The people need a name and a face come election time Jack, and that will help us rid ourselves of those who spend our money without consequence.

    Joe M (Mn)

    February 1, 2010 at 5:56 pm |
  129. Antonio from Washington D.C.

    I just won't give a cent to banks.

    February 1, 2010 at 5:58 pm |
  130. Cyndi

    Cut out Nancy Pelosi!

    February 1, 2010 at 5:59 pm |
  131. Ed

    Step #1: Get rid of the village idiots who have become members of Congress. You know, the ones who didn't understand that cutting taxes without cutting spending would lead to deficits. After you get Step #1 done, call me and will go from there.

    Ed
    Texas

    February 1, 2010 at 6:00 pm |
  132. bgaleles Port Ludlow, WA

    Perhaps we should take a look at how the greatest manufacturing country in the world now makes absolutely nothing. We have allowed corporations to take their plants overseas and return products for sale in the US without any tariff whatsoever. Slap an import tariff on any revenue generated outside the country and apply that to the deficit. That should bring it down. When my husband was stationed in Thailand in 1971 a Corvette was priced at $33,000. Tariff imposed by the Thai government to protect its own industry. Want to do business in Canada, a resort owner we know has to hire Canadians first, the boats and motors he uses must be made in Canada and he even has to get permission for his daughter to work her summer vacation in the family business. When we start protecting our own interests rather than that of big businesses we will be able to reduce the deficit.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:00 pm |
  133. Jerry Jacksonville, Fl.

    Eliminate the idiots we call congressmen, they waste more money then the american people can send to Washington

    February 1, 2010 at 6:02 pm |
  134. Johnny Chagdes

    Hi Jack –

    Let's see if Obama and Congress can "walk the talk".

    Proposal: Reduce Presidential and Congress' support teams by 10 – 20%.

    Reasoning (1) : The President and Congress need to lead by example and trimming their support staff and infrastructure is a good precedence to prove to the American community that they serve that they are serious about containing "their own" costs.

    Reasoning (2) : The value that the Congress has put forward regarding "Health Care" reveals that they have already wasted tax payer dollars by not achieving the goals they were elected to fulfill.

    I am not happy to see that the Government in their attempts to reign in costs are never centered at themselves. Perhaps someone in Congress or the Presidency will see the value of this and act upon this recommendation.

    Trust me ... I will not hold my breathe waiting for this recommendation to get enacted, however, I am hopeful.

    Government needs to look at their own homes to reign in costs first. If there efforts fail, the "Change that we can believe in" will be the changing of the guard ... new senators, new representatives, and a new president ... not to mention all of those poor lobbyists that just lost their foothold into the government and will have to start anew with new government officials.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:03 pm |
  135. James Allen

    Roughly 70% of the American economy is generated by consumer spending. Given the economic crisis and the absence of consumer spending, the government is the spender of last resort. Deficit spending by the Government replaces consumer spending and anyone who doesn't understand that deficits, at least in the short run, are necessary are economic illiterates.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:03 pm |
  136. perry jones

    Let congress know that there will be no bills passed with any fat

    Call in all loans to all the banks and auto makers

    cut taxes by 10% across the board

    End the student loan programs and all grants for education

    Inform all federal employees they will be paying for there own medical ins.

    Freeze all salaries at the federal level and start removing the fat… as well I would implement a no nepotism police.

    I would put Freddy Mac and fanny may on notice that they are to be made a privet company and will have ties to the federal reserve

    do my yery best to pass a new law that stats in plain terms no more payed time off DOSE ANY ONE KNOW HOW MUCH THE GOVERNMENT AND THE TAX PAYERS AS WELL THE EMPLOYEERS SPEND ON PAYED TIME OFF

    Perry Jones
    Council bluffs ia

    February 1, 2010 at 6:06 pm |
  137. Craig Quirolo

    Very, very easy..... stop paying taxes. Craig Brooksville Florida

    February 1, 2010 at 6:07 pm |
  138. steve touma

    sell all the GSE, GOVERNMENT SPONSORED ENTITIES,use the money three ways, pay for a tax cut, return money to the states, and pay dosn the debt, it is a win win situation for all,

    steve touma

    paris france

    February 1, 2010 at 6:08 pm |
  139. Gail, Plano,Texas

    My first thought is that members of Congress should have to pay for their own health insurance! That would put a large dent in the debt over the next 10 years. Next, stop allowing members of Congress travelling to foreign countries on our dime. This would be a great start. Let the spending freeze begin with those who have abused the system for forever!

    February 1, 2010 at 6:08 pm |
  140. Lika

    I would cut spending with a welfare overhaul! It has become a way of life or "hand out" instead of the "hand up" that is was supposed to. A person's ability to collect welfare should be limited to 5 years over their lifetime. While on welfare, neither the father nor the mother should be allowed to have more children. BOTH parents MUST be legal U.S. citizens with documentation showing that they paid taxes in the past. All welfare recipients should have to do continuous community service in order to collect benefits.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:11 pm |
  141. Mari Fernandez, Utah

    I would start by stopping the cutting the billions of dollars Homeland Security has paid Boeing for technology that does not work in the Arizona & Texas border with Mexico. The electronic surveilance is a joke!

    February 1, 2010 at 6:11 pm |
  142. Bill-Fort Wayne, IN

    I would start by cutting retirement benefits for elected officials. Serve your term/terms, go back to what you were doing and set up your own retirement. Stop sending millions of dollars overseas for programs that line the pockets of shaky governments and do not help the people or country the dollars were directed. I would make accounting agencies in the government accountable for funds. If you can not track the money , you lose your job and the money stops. I would direct funds to go to the needed source and not flow through layers of offices that take more than what is directed to help the program or the people. I would level the tax burden on corps. and people to try a more fair distribution schedule. I could go on, but I know your time is limited..

    February 1, 2010 at 6:12 pm |
  143. Scott Stodden

    Jack I would cut goverment spending the same way President Obama is doing in this budget and if the Republicans in Washington have any brains which I doubt they do they will stand with President Obama and vote yes for this budget, its a great budget that helps us save money in the long run!

    Scott Stodden (Freeport,Illinois)

    February 1, 2010 at 6:12 pm |
  144. IKHAN san jose ca

    Hi Jack,
    to start with, stop feeding wars.
    stop doling out billions in aid to so called allies who treat US as just a big milking cow.
    Distribution of pork-no more.
    This should work.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:15 pm |
  145. Mike in New Orleans

    I would reduce welfare and food stamp payments for anyone who has a second child they can't afford to raise. Then gradually reduce it for the third, fourth, fifth, and six child until they get nothing. At present, the more you breed, the more you make.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:15 pm |
  146. Gary H. Boyd

    First I'd cut the salaries and benefits of the Senate and Congress by 1/2, elimninate the automatic annual salary increases they've voted themselves and impose serious restrictions on travel anywhere. That ought to be enough to get the message across to these clowns it's time they got serious about cost control. I'd also impose a 2 term limit for the Senate and a 3 term limit for the House.

    Gary Boyd in Scottsdale, Arizona

    February 1, 2010 at 6:15 pm |
  147. Phil-Eastern Washington

    I would completely void all contracts with Blackwater (aka XE).

    February 1, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  148. Donald

    First, lets control congressional spending on earmarks and junkets (such as Pelosi's trip to Copenhagen). I realize that this may not represent a significant portion of our budget, but reckless spending must stop and it is the proper symbolic gesture.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  149. Henk Vandenbergh

    Easy: offer each member of the house and senate 1% of whatever amount of budget reduction they can –prove– they have accomplished, with a maximum of $10 million per person. That's $1 billion reduction from 535 people each or $535 billion budget reduction. The greedy bastards will love that. They then no longer have to depend on lobbyists for their re-election funds so they can start spending time with their constituents instead.

    Henk in Colorado

    February 1, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  150. Jackson Dudley, Praco

    Suspend all of the Republican's and health care benefits, and let them get it the best way they can. After all, we don't want 'socialism' on the backs of the taxpayers and have our children pay for the colonoscopys
    of Republicans for years to come, Jack.

    (That alone would probably cut the national debt in half.)

    February 1, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  151. David Sisters OR

    What politician will want to cut anything-the other guys sure but "Not Mine" , as long as they write in special provisions for other Congressmen and Senators to get their vote (Like what was written in for Nelson of Nebraska for his vote on the Health Bill) congress will never cut spending. They have to sart thinking of what's good for the country, not their own ass.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  152. Chris

    Same way corporations and state govt do it, across the board. You can't tell me you can find 10% fat in the federal budget, EVERYWHERE. Some departments could be cut altogether.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  153. Mical

    Jack,
    Cut salaries of ALL House and Congressional representatives by 30%. (When I make a budget I sacrifice spending, they should too)

    Abolish lobbyists, the extra cash politicians get from lobbyists just adds to their coffers not the gov'ts. Stop wasting tax dollars on pet projects nationwide. If lobbyists can afford blackmail cash, they can afford to pay for projects they want.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  154. Bill - upper NY state

    That's simple. Initiate a freeze on congressional salaries and require our representatives to submit travel expense requests BEFORE they go on their little globe-hopping. Of course, this would end up with a Travel Expense Committee.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  155. Karen (Virginia Beach, Virginia)

    The best way to cut government spending is to stop SPENDING! But they won't because they believe that there is a money tree in their backyard. They won't cut their staff, stop flying on our money, cut waste, cut pork barrel spending, stop giving themselves raises and TAKE A PAYCUT! Heaven forbid, that they actually do what is right for the country and not themselves! They are supposed to work for US!

    February 1, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  156. Ryan from Wisconsin

    We need to cut anything that does not help keep people alive.Keep unemployment, social security, medicare, food stamps, ect. Cut out NASA budget (till there is surplus. does going to the moon help keep people alive here, now?), "business travel" for politicians, research funding for anything not directly related to deadly disease, a big chunk of the military (let other countries help share the load). We need to get back to basic human survival.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  157. Rick Medina,OH

    Jack,

    The first thing we need to do is recognize that the Tax Code really has only one purpose ... to raise money for the government. The Congress of 1913 never envisioned it would be used to adjust behaviors. We need to eliminate earmarks completely. Though they account for a small portion of the budget, they draw a lot of lobbiyist activity. We can no longer put 2000 page bills in front of Congress ... they need to vote (and be counted) on each issue separately.

    Rick, Medina, OH

    February 1, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  158. Ajoy Adhikari

    Just the same way our Honorable President is doing.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  159. Greg, Ontario

    Simple..if it doesn't directly threaten America But out. There is no reason for America or anyone else to have troops in South Korea. If they need you so bad tell them its going to cost them umpteen billion a year. Tell the Arabs to drink thier oil we will use ours. Get some closed minded Republican to go through everything you spend money on and after he tells you where there is waste you look it over, cross out the things that will destroy peoples lives or put them on the street. You also cross out all the money heading to pet projects not really needed and of coarse cross out all the tax cuts to those poor companies that only made Billions last year instead of tens of billions.
    What ever is left over you cut..poof! Instant trillion dollar bonus.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  160. William Courtland

    You had to go and ask a question like this...

    So the first thing American politicans need is a lesson in historical civism(lessons of the past.) Then they need to understand the definition of Civilization, and understand the true value of faith in such a word and ideal. Civilization is for the next generation: it is not ever ours: but always going to be theirs: yet when the next generation becomes the now: their ideal of civilization promotes them to work for their own children and future generations.

    This is the fundamental truth of government: the more perfect union takes planning over a long term, and not just instant solutions to immediate or past problems.

    Lesson on Economy: demand for raw material. This is the base of any economy: what can you take to market? The market doesn't exist without the need for raw material, or without the raw material found in stock for trade. All service jobs, all clerk positions, all the functions which come after raw material extraction makes the market what it is. Without raw material extraction you end up with service industries with no products to use.

    Fiat is a product, a tool of the market which makes trading easier, it is not a replacement for gold: but a loan worth what one has contributed. The limit is only limited to how much we as a mass group will work: all that we do creates net worth, yet some is founded as real equity.

    So how are we going to employ 40 million people? You really can not just install the basic makeup of New York and its business all over the Nation: as the demand for that work is not needed. Sure a town which only has Mcdonalds would be interesting, but it is not really the answer...

    To demand raw materials... Yet the service industry must have a reason to demand those materials. To much of something when it is not used reduced the investment of extraction, so what can America do, which is nationally profound, promotes the economy and the welfare of the people, assists to reduce the deficit? Fourty million people is a lot to put back to work, you can not just open up on ship yard and expect it to employ them all, nor can you expect a ship yard to sell enough product internationally to retire the debt.

    While the debt in truth is imaginary, it is owed to nations of value and honor. Work is life, and material requires extraction. Updating the USPS would be a good start, building a new capitol building would be a great first action towards that endevour. Selling the USPS system internationally is the solution: and it is then for the trade benefit of the Union as well as for the betterment of the economy and the standards of life of the people, plus is an act against the dependancy upon foreign energy, and can remove the threat of the resource reduction catalyst of finite crude oil levels.

    Civilization... it is something real to have faith in.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:29 pm |
  161. Liberal wingnut

    Get rid of Obama!

    Seriously, even if you weren't a war supporter there was at least something "tangible" that the money went to. Where has the trillion Obama spent went? Obama didn't have a Katrina?

    February 1, 2010 at 6:30 pm |
  162. GWTripp, Mch'sburg, PA

    I propose that a new department be made whose mandate would be to audit all federally funded projects and have that department empowered to take appropriate action to correct any miscalculations. A good auditing team could uncover all kinds of funds that are being misused. They could uncover cost overruns, padded appropriations, over charging, duplicity, and corruption. You would be amazed by the results of doing this. The savings from auditing every office in the Pentagon would be in the hundreds of billions of dollars.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:30 pm |
  163. Simonsays-Orlando

    First we cut the salaries and medical benefits of every one in congress. That will give them a clue as to what the rest of us are facing. Then we make them pay for all that pork barrel spending out of their own pockets.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:32 pm |
  164. George

    Let's cut back on foreign aid to all countries that harbor terrorists. Cut back aid to all countries, time they fend for themselves, we have Americans starving, let's start helping our own first. Let's cut congressional salaries by 50%, federal employees by 10%.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:34 pm |
  165. Dea in Fayetteville NC

    I would make elected officials match their pay to the minimum wage and enlisted miltiary pay, and make them pay for their own medical care unless they accept the same care they want to give the average American.

    No lifetime compensation for working one term, retirement packages equal to military and other government retirement benefitsand requirements. Once all of that is done I have a feeling the saving in salaries and benefits alone will encourage them to simplify other spending programs in order to find ways to raise their own pay by improving the lives of the rest of us.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:34 pm |
  166. Lance, Ridgecrest, Ca

    Jack, how about cutting discretionary funding to a big fat ZERO, to start with. That takes care of the deficit in one move. The rest of the cuts would come from the other 2/3rds of the budget. Cut Social Security by stopping payments to those that have never contributed, cut Medicaid to zero, want health care, buy insurance or do without. Zero out ALL foreign aide, we can't keep supporting the rest of the world when we are going broke. Cut welfare to ZERO, want to eat, get a job. Close all military bases overseas and bring the troops home. Tell the United Nations to find a new home or start paying rent. Find the $500B they say is fraud in Medicare, and fix that. All this would be a good start.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:35 pm |
  167. Theresa

    First off–maybe Madam Pelosi would like to say Bon Voyage–dangit she'll still get a pension. One or two less czars might help. No heat in the winter for the senators,congressman while in session. Something might get done–for that matter ! Let's add do they relly need electricity? Kerosene lamps will do.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:35 pm |
  168. Lynn, Columbia, Mo.

    I would get rid of at least half of the government intelligence agencies or at least combine them. They have too many in competiton with each other and they don't communicate or cooperate with each other. We could pass a constitutional amendment to get rid of the Supreme Court too since they don't do their jobs properly. We have federal courts who do the same job, only better. Too much redundancy. And we could clip the wings on congressional globe trotting and tell them to use electronics to communicate with other countries. Other than that, I wouldn't cut spending because it takes money to make money AND WE ARE IN A RECESSION!

    February 1, 2010 at 6:37 pm |
  169. Ann from Charleston, SC

    We need to start a movement in this country to vote out all incumbants from Congress – Democrats and Republicans alike. That may scare the politicians who do get elected into leaving their canned agendas (along with their egos) at the door and tackling the problems of our government – like reducing spending among others.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:38 pm |
  170. Loren, Chicago

    Start at the top, cut all of President Obama's policy Czars and their staff. The jobs that they do are already covered by the Cabinet and there shouldn't be this duplication. Next step would be cutting Congressional perks, make them live to the same standards that the rest of live. Then go after any new funding, if an agency can't live within its current budget, then it needs to figure out what it can do without. Finally, cut the crap. Everyone and his brother knows that there are a number of programs that exist solely because somebody's cousin knows somebody on somebody's staff, but none of it is essential to the American people. Our government needs to rethink its purpose and make sure that the programs it provides are narrowly tailored to achieve acceptable goals. They should be asking themselves the question, if this was my money would I spend it this way?

    February 1, 2010 at 6:38 pm |
  171. Ann from Hampton, New Jersey

    Cut out the pork!!! Take a pay cut like the rest of us. Take apart the appropriations one by one and learn how to cut corners. Put a freeze on spending until you can see where the money is going and how important it is.They tell us to tighten our belts, all I can see is that they are expanding theirs. I wish I had money to spend like a drunken sailor like our Congress is doing, and the sad part is belongs to all of us.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:39 pm |
  172. chris

    first cut the pork cut salaries and benefits back to earth cancle new cviechel purchases for 5 years sell nancy's peloci's plane and cut spending for other nations cut spending and govt employees to what is really needed this will and toehr ideas cut spending by billions and trillions over time to save the taxpayers

    February 1, 2010 at 6:39 pm |
  173. Gigi Oregon

    We first need to decide who's spending the money. We mostly get bits and pieces of the budget. I understand that Pres. Bush and congress doubled the national debt in his eight years. Lets go back and look at the eight years prior to that. And decide who's to blame. I felt like the Clinton years that not a lot was spent , an accumulation of monies was acquired, and the debt brought down. It sounds like one party is suppressing the other and then spending like there is no pay back to be done. Just blame the democrats and let the grand kids pay for the spending. Let the people know who is the party of spending, giving tax cuts for the rich and holds the party under fear to gain politically. Then voice it loud and clearly with NO talking points, strategist's, blogs or finger pointing by government, etc. . Then "we the people" cut that party down to size. Maybe we could then form a new party...the hard part will be finding a animal who could be the mascot for this Utopian party.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:40 pm |
  174. jim Blevins

    Most of the money that this country spends fall under the heading Security. Most of that money is spent on paranoia and trying to control the internal affairs of other countries. Eliminating counter productive activities such as these especially wars would give us huge balance of payment and budget surpluses. Look at how China mostly stays out of other's internal affairs and what surpluses they get to find an example of what we should be doing. They are accumulating lots of our money and that is a big part of why.

    Jim, Craig, CO

    February 1, 2010 at 6:40 pm |
  175. Paulette in Dallas,PA

    Again your blog must save the day! First and foremost I'd cut out the raises the Congress generously gave themselves. All of these unnecessary junkits-such as Pelosi and Copenhagan-would have to go too. I'd pick Bill Clinton's mind on how he balanced the budget and left a surplus and try to get some good ideas there. And,simple common sense dictates to end pork programs just to assauge congressional constituents entitlement wants. Eliminate all programs that have not been successful and I'd remind the Congress that it is time to pay back all of those loans from social security.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:40 pm |
  176. Denis Duffy

    First, admit to the world that the United States is broke and they shouldn't expect foreign aid from us. Bring home all American troops, other than those helping out in Haiti. Fire the "Czars". Cut White House and congressional staffs by 50% and their budgets by the same. No more free travel for anyone in the government, including the President. He can stay in Washington and do his job. A good start.

    Denis Duffy
    Upper Saint Clair, Pa.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:41 pm |
  177. Pete - Augusta Ga

    Jack –

    Best way to cut government spending? Only one way – vote out every incumbant in Congress. The career politicians who currently represent us will continue to overspend their way to reelection every 2 & 6 years because it has worked – (Yes Jack, they think we're morons & history proves they've been right).

    February 1, 2010 at 6:42 pm |
  178. Katja in Florida

    I would cut the pay for ALL politicians in the country in HALF. Since most of them only work HALF of the time, thats all they should get paid. Besides, most them get money from other sources, they won't miss it too much.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:42 pm |
  179. Don from Belleville, Canada

    Spending cuts take too long to take effect, so I would raise taxes instead, and quickly, to take effect on July 1, 2010. Not just taxes on the rich, but taxes on corporations, the middle class, stuff you buy, just about anywhere I could raise a quick buck. The government needs money now, not sometime down the road.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:42 pm |
  180. honestjohn in Vermont

    I'd start with Congress. They are overpaid both by their salaries and what the lobbyists contribute to them. I'd put an immediate freeze on ALL of their lavish benefits which come out of the taxpayers pockets. Imagine here is a group of characters who make sure they have great healthcare coverage and they can't do anything for the Americans who elected them. Shame on them all. After Congress I'd start cutting all the lavish spending at the White House.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:43 pm |
  181. chateram jorree

    bring home your troops from around the world.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:44 pm |
  182. Janet, Las Vegas, NV

    I would love to see a disolution of the IRS. The tax code is so massive and complicated. Wouldn't it be much simpler and cost effective to simply have a federal tax on goods purchased in the U.S.and quit taking federal withholding from our paychecks? That would get rid of one massive bureacracy!

    February 1, 2010 at 6:44 pm |
  183. Wm in PA

    Decriminalize drugs: close the DEA – save billions. Save Mexico. Stop drug funds for terrorists.
    Stop two wars where we have no strategic stake in their civil unrest. Save TRILLIONS, balance the budget in two years etc.
    Restore common sense tax laws. Progressive flat tax IRS gone.
    Stop pork, save billions.
    Reform health care – save medicare, social security and stop the growth of the deficit.

    All common sense actions but do not feed the billions and trillions of dollars into the corporate person's coffers. So they will not happen.

    Sad to watch our politicians preside over the end of the U. S. as a moral world leader able to use old fashioned common sense.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:47 pm |
  184. Jane - WI

    Spending needs to be cut across the board. That would mean not increasing child care credits, adding an expensive new health insurance program, it would mean cutting subsidies and benefits. Perhaps even cuts to our sacred social programs will have to be in order.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:49 pm |
  185. Jerry,OK

    Jack, I would cut spending, and collect enough taxes to pay as we go. Then...have the rich pay back the government all the trillions they avoided during the Reagan-Bush tax-cuts. We should then bill: China-Europe-Japan-England-Middle East etc, for saving there butts in WW11, and providing security for the world during the past sixty years.

    Jerry Wilson

    February 1, 2010 at 6:49 pm |
  186. Diane Dagenais Turbide

    Listen to your on CNN money and Ask your experts on how not to repeat results of 1937!

    Take care!

    February 1, 2010 at 6:50 pm |
  187. JENNA

    How would you cut government spending?

    Let's start with taking away the public option health care and pay for life for the senators and public option heath care for congress members.

    Jenna
    Roseville CA

    February 1, 2010 at 6:50 pm |
  188. Chris

    The average American can't balance a personal budget or checkbook. We think credit cards are money. We spend 120% of our personal income. And you want our advice on how we would cut government spending?!! Jack ... cmon man ... you're inciting the masses to more lunacy. – Chris, Denver CO

    February 1, 2010 at 6:50 pm |
  189. Bob Daniel

    1) Get out of Iran
    2) Get out of Afganistan
    3) Clean up Medicare. Too much overbilling and fraud going on.
    4) Repeal NAFTA
    5) Tax imports heavily and create incentives to manufacture in US
    6) Deport illegal aliens
    7) Develop and put on-line liquid sodium nuclear reactors.
    8) Cut farm subsidies for large scale agriculture
    10) Stop the sale of US businesses to foreign firms. (The profits go off shore)

    February 1, 2010 at 6:51 pm |
  190. Mike, Syracuse, NY

    Let's pretend that the budget wasn't passed and shutdown the entire government except the Dod and DHS. Wait 30 days, and see what we really can't live without and turn them back on. Permanently shut down the rest. We'd easily balance the budget and even have a surplus, which when turn into a tax cut will create a boom.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:52 pm |
  191. Sarah

    The government will never control its own spending because, unlike individuals, the government doesn't produce weath; it only confiscates wealth from those who produce it.

    When you can figure out how to control the spending of a teenager who has never had a job and has unlimited discretion to confiscate from their parents, you will have your answer.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:56 pm |
  192. Trish Hart

    I think we've finally done it, Jack. The Bible warns us that we will create such a mess that no man will have the solution. I think it's safe to say, "That prophecy has been fullfilled." I say that we need to turn our faces back to God and ask Him to forgive us and heal our land. I don't think that are very many people out there that would disagree with me when I say that nothing short of a miracle will get us out of this.

    Trish Hart
    Anaheim, Ca.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:56 pm |
  193. Marion

    Where do I begin? Why don't we start by putting America first? We need to stop policing the world and refrain from being the only nation taking on the world's problems – and footing the majority of the bill along the way! I would challenge the President to have Bill Gates, Jack Welch and Ted Turner go over the 'books' and the budget and start slashing and burning. Entitlements have got to stop. Let's have a 2-yr moritorium on entitlements and see what happens. Will the sun still rise and set? Probably.... Better still, have a 2-yr retroactive freeze on all raises, benefits and perks for all Congressmen and Senators until they cut out every penny of waste in the budget, regardless of which district the waste occurs in. When they produce a budget that truly works for the American people, a budget that keeps more money in people's pockets for them to put towards their retirement savings, their homes, cars and their childrens' college tuitions, only then can they have their 'toys' back.
    Marion Madison, NJ

    February 1, 2010 at 6:57 pm |
  194. Lynda, in Greenville NC

    I would cut spending on entitlement programs – food stamps for one should be dropped completely – we are paying for people's candy and soda! WIC makes sense in that it tells people to buy healthy food, but why do we encourage further reproduction in people who can't afford to live as is? Cut off all WIC, welfare, medicaid for each child after the 2nd so women stop having children to get more money. Pay for their tubal ligation instead of their 5 kids. If they decide to have more kids, we won't pay but they can turn the kid over to an orphanage! It would help break this cycle of feeling entitled to be taken care of by the government without working.

    February 1, 2010 at 6:58 pm |
  195. William Courtland

    Investment into an equity which returns its value. The installation of new Postal Routes provides returns on the invested dollar over the next two hundred years.

    Payroll stimulus support: helps some one pay the bills today: and allows another to enjoy a service. The little things make it better overall, but the bigger things make it all correct again as they truly solve the issue instead of just bandaiding the current situation: and appeasing a deity of currency with a tithing. Currency was invented to promote Civilization: it is a tool: use it wisely: and understand it will respect being used to promote civilization, a personification in Karma manefested to embody a true pattern of what looks like respect returned...

    February 1, 2010 at 6:58 pm |
  196. SLK 65

    No Jack! They think that we are to stupid to know what to do, so that is why Obama and his buddies are trying to control everthing they can. Health care, banks, auto industry, schools, and god knows what else they are up to behind closed doors. It is sad to see this happen to our country.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:00 pm |
  197. Richard Oak Harbor Washington

    We could start by scrutinizing Congressional travel. Nancy Pelosi is a good example of extravagant government jet setting. Make the Postal Service pay for itself by ending Federal subsidies like they have it in Canada. We should stop making worthless pennys for awhile to save the taxpayers money by making them spend the pennys they already keep at home in a coffee can. After that we could thin out middle management in a few select bureaucratic agencies where they spend 8 hours a day accomplishing 15 minutes worth of actual work. Then we could cut some Foreign Aid programs that help no one but the corrupt. Need I mention streamlining Medicare and Medicaid to reduce billing fraud?

    February 1, 2010 at 7:01 pm |
  198. Marion

    One last thing: the President and First Lady can stay home in the US where he has two wars and an economy in ruins to deal with instead of jetting off to Indonesia and Australia.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:02 pm |
  199. Screiver

    3 words:
    Line
    Item
    Veto

    February 1, 2010 at 7:03 pm |
  200. Gerry, Texas

    Cut just like I have to. Across the board after the necessities. Then cut some necessities if you have to.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:08 pm |
  201. Sarah

    40% of people who file an income tax return pay $0 in federal income taxes. Why would anyone care how much their dinner costs if they aren't contributing to the tab?

    When everyone in America feels the sting of this spending, we will start electing politicians who are serious about controlling it. Until then, it is a pipe dream.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:09 pm |
  202. paul

    cut congressmens pay to minnimum wage, they can pay out of pocket
    for any benefits they want and give them one week off after they've been there for a year. might not solve the problem but it might give them a valuable lesson in economics

    February 1, 2010 at 7:10 pm |
  203. Richard Green

    Jack, I'd start by closing some of the 900 military bases we have scattered all over the world (there are 227 in Germany alone!). Then I'd sell some of the 172 golf courses the military owns and maintains around the world. Then I'd stop giving defense dollars to the 95 top contractors with $300 billion in overruns [ask McCain. He knows all about them.)

    We wouldn't have to cut spending as much if the tax cuts for the rich were allowed to expire on time. Get out of Afghanistan and Iraq. Stop giving money and weapons to Israel to use on its neighbors. Stop handing out subsidies to coal and oil companies and end the tax breaks for those companies who relocate jobs offshore.

    There are a hundred ways to lower the budget deficit and by no means does that always mean cutting spending. Stop doing stupid things!

    Richard Green
    San Clemente, Cal.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:10 pm |
  204. joan davies

    For starters, we could cut the salaries and benefits given to congress people. So far , this session of house and senate has produced nothing.
    They should be paid on basis of "merit pay." If they don't produce, they don't get paid!!! Makes perfect sense to me. What do those clowns do all day anyhow????

    February 1, 2010 at 7:21 pm |
  205. George Beezer

    To cut the nation's appetite for spending, institude a national hourly minimum wage (like $10.00 PH) for every working American, including the the fat cats on wall street...In spite of any profession for 10 yrs........

    February 1, 2010 at 7:21 pm |
  206. Liz Amundson

    Hi Jack,

    Quite simple, reduce foreign aid until we can eliminate our national debt. It's time to focus on America and Americans. Our economy in ruins and the size of our national debt is reason enough.

    Liz
    Battle Creek, Michigan

    February 1, 2010 at 7:25 pm |
  207. Nina L. Murphy

    Hi Jack, How to cut government spending... We can start by paying our representatives what the average wage is...for the people they represent. My favorite is give our representative NO HEALTH CARE benefits, until they find a solution to the problems of health care, and third, giving our representatives NO PERKS or BENEFITS. They are supposedly public servants, aren't they????

    February 1, 2010 at 7:25 pm |
  208. John Crumrine

    I've come to learn that many of life's questions can be answered by studying the game of baseball.

    If we give these guys performance based contracts, much like we do struggling players in baseball, they'll have incentive to succeed and meet the goals that they've promised when we elected them. You see, it works like this. If we need a guy to hit us 20 home runs next season and we have doubts, we put a $2million incentive in his minimally priced contract. He then has a reason to perform. It should work the same with many of our government leaders. If we have a goal of balancing the budget, let us cut their salaries to a fraction and add performance based incentive bonuses detailing specific and reasonable goals that we'd like them to achieve.

    Let's start with the budget and health care.

    Thank you.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:25 pm |
  209. Peggy Dorrell

    One cuts programs that 67% of our American citizens want to cut. Bring home all troops, except for those on diplomat duty or humanitarian duty. Cut the defense budget by at lease 50-67%

    Of course, we must be prepared to pay all of those troops unemployment compensarion. A number could take care of the CIA secondary jobs and another group could do airport security.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:25 pm |
  210. Marilu Suarez

    A high speed train from Tampa to Orlando to Miami? Are you kidding!
    This is such a boondoggle its not even funny. Talk about throwing good tax payer dollars down a black hole... I say scrap it.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:25 pm |
  211. Greg Miller

    As a US military veteran, a member of the Disabled American Veterans and Veterans of Foreign Wars, and holding a graduate degree in History, I would stop the frivolous wars this country is financing that are only enriching the corporations while they bankrupt the country and its citizens.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:25 pm |
  212. Craig

    The federal government needs to get back to basics and get out of the business of being Protector-Against-All-Things-Bad or Provider-Of-Everything-We-Want. Fund the Departments of State and Defense to handle peaceful and hostile relations with foreign governments and privatize the rest once and for all.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:25 pm |
  213. Doris Lauter

    Take your choice.....do you want to cut government spending or keep the millions of people out of jobs forever.... and create more homeless. If Obama has a plan to do both.....good for him.

    Bush had a clean slate, and still we owe 1.3 trillion from him, along with a failing economy. How sad that Obama takes the blame for the economy now. He is not a magician.
    Doris
    Ojai,California

    February 1, 2010 at 7:25 pm |
  214. Leslie

    The government could start by insisting that those who have not paid into the system may not take out.... Ex. Social Security. Tax money must go to the United States – not to other countries- until all Americans are taken care of..... It seems a harsh thing, but the US cannot give to others if it can't take care of its own first.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:25 pm |
  215. Richard Curren

    Tax the rich that made out under bush. It is not a good idea to cut government spending when we're barely out of a near second republican lead Depression.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:26 pm |
  216. Emmanuel Tita, Tampa ,FL

    Jack, you got to be kidding me asking such a question with the answer right infront of you. Just stop fighting all these wars and just provide public healthcare for all.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:26 pm |
  217. Craig

    The federal government needs to get back to basics and get out of the business of being Protector-Against-All-Things-Bad or Provider-Of-Everything-We-Want. Fund the Departments of State and Defense to handle peaceful and hostile relations with foreign governments and privatize the rest once and for all.

    Craig
    La Mirada, CA

    February 1, 2010 at 7:26 pm |
  218. Sherin Yousri

    You Americans are starting to turn into a bad joke, what the hell is wrong, everyone who was looking up to the USA seems to have lost the dream and yes.... the figures do not add up and the Mayan's will have their way. One thing though which is very strange, in 1999 Business Week published a special article called "the 21st century corporation", every single vision of the new financial system was mentioned in that article and somehow not one living human read or tried to follow what they wrote. Bottom line is .... we are all screwed because we either followed the dream and lived the nightmare.... THANK YOU USA, you made the Chinese look like Angels....

    February 1, 2010 at 7:26 pm |
  219. Tom Harm

    This a a no brainer, first I would start by cutting the perks and salaries of congress and cut their staff!!! These jokers vote themselves pay raises and perks and then do a rotten job of running the country. My new slogan for elections is to "vote against the incumbent"!! It doesn't matter Democrat or Republican they are all the same. We really need more independants who will do the right thing for the country and the people not do what they perceive is voting to get themselves reelected.
    Tom
    Illinois

    February 1, 2010 at 7:26 pm |
  220. Santo

    Jack,

    Have term limits for congress and issue a flat tax for the entire nation. The first one is very important because it would get those old clowns that hold power out of congress.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:26 pm |
  221. Joseph Michaels expatriate in Thailand

    Easy. Get rid of the FED (Federal Reserve Bank). The Constitution of the US provides for the US to issue its own money. Instead, we pay the FED, a PRIVATE corporation , full face value for the paper money they issue, with our taxes serving as the collatteral. Guess what, Jack. We can issue our own money, interest free, using the same taxes as the collatteral.
    In 2006 alone, we paid the FED $412 billion in interest, unnecessary interest. What will the bill be in 2010. Probably over $600 billion, all unnecessary.

    Joseph Michaels
    ex-patriate in Thailand

    February 1, 2010 at 7:26 pm |
  222. Jesse

    This one's easy, Jack. Stop electing Republicans. They claim to be more budget friendly and yet... look at the mess our former president left us in.

    I've been waiting for this type of question for a while now...

    We (my family and I) are US Citizens living in Switzerland, not too far from Davos. Its quite sad to see how the attendants at the WEF are dealing with America's financial and real estate earthquake. You should see how the wind blows over here now. After the Bush era, we know what debts and deficits mean, trust me. Half of Europe is going bankrupt.

    So, why don't ask this question, Jack.

    Considering that our former president had his pink sun glasses on for too long, what is the price we (I mean us as a whole, Democrats and Republicans, you, I, my family, world citizens) are paying from the aftershock of the Bush era?

    Perhaps we should learn how to open our eyes and ask ourselves what really matters, Jack. And learn from our mistakes.
    How on earth are we ever going to get out of this mess, otherwise.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:26 pm |
  223. Kent Riddle

    First, I would close the numerous military basis that we have around the world that have long outlived their need, Germany, Italy, Turkey, etc. These basis have not served a strategic purpose since the end of the cold war and we should stop serving as the worlds police force.

    Second, cut out a lot of the foreign aid that we give out to countries. Why in these financially troubled times are we the country that has to bank roll the world. If countries need money let it be a U.N. effort; and oh yeah we should stop being the primary money stream for that as well.

    It is time that other countries, particularly those "rolling in oil dough" step up to the plate along with China they have the sense not to do the first two.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:26 pm |
  224. Gary DeWall

    First not just freeze but stop all overseas spending for 1 to 3 years such as all the money we give Iseral, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, stop for every country would save billions and billions of dollars. Then not freeze but stop all tax cuts or tax breaks for any company making over so much per year (stop for big companys oil, cars, etc )and keep for small business. Take away all the perks of congress and senate. Who do they try to fool, I always hear " I could make so miuch more money in the private sector but I want to do the peoples work) makes me sick, let them go back to the private sector and get some new blood in. take away there travel expenses, food, mail, all the perks and make it like a job, they do the job and they get a paycheck. Freeze military spending for 3 years, freeze the space program for 3 to 5 years, DO NOT STOP OR FREEZE PROGRAMS FOR ALTERNITIVE FUELS, We do that everytime oil goes down a bit lets really do it so the mideast can eat coconuts and palm tree leaves instead of all the good stuff they buy with our money from oil. I could go on and on.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:26 pm |
  225. Joe Kasprzyk

    Easy, first thing you do is have a mandatory 50% reduction in all government departments. After that, we'll talk.

    Joe

    February 1, 2010 at 7:26 pm |
  226. L. Hartley

    President Obama should immediately declare an executive order to stop all of the pork spending passed last year and stop all work on any projects that involved pork at any time in the last ten years which is not finished.

    Take away the pay increases for the congress. Take their Cadillac insurance policies from them and make them pay what we all have to pay. If they are found guilty of corruption or moral infractions, fire them and make them pay all their pay back to the US.

    Stop giving aid to Europe or other countries. They are no longer our friends. We have done our part to stop wars in the past and help them to rebuild.

    Bring back American jobs by fining huge companies, stopping any importation of workers for jobs in our own country. Fine or confiscate all monies put in banks outside the country and make these corporations pay huge fines and pay taxes owed since they moved their companies.

    Make it tough on Wall Street and banks and make them give back their bonuses.

    I am sick of the first thing they do being more damage to Medicare. I am getting no benefit from the Part D that I have to pay out of my earnings and only the insurance company is getting benefit from the money I need myself to live on and that they now get. I mean $300-$500 a year is not something I can do without.

    Just make them start being responsible and if they can't do the job they were elected for, then let the citizens vote on these bills. We can whittle them down to 25-50 pages, not 2000 pages.

    I am sick of what they won't tackle and always making it average citizens, mostly seniors and those dependent on these helps, i.e. Medicare and Medicaid. Stop giving illegal aliens our services which we have paid for with taxes and having SS and Medicare taken out of our earnings.

    I will be sending one huge tea bag to the president if I don't see something change this year for the better for PEOPLE, the ones that hire them.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:26 pm |
  227. Regina

    Regina from Meridian, Mississippi says the way to cut spending is to never let another Republican enter the US Presidency!

    February 1, 2010 at 7:26 pm |
  228. Brian K. Miller

    Wooster, Ohio

    I would suggest eliminating the ATF, EPA, DHS, and IRS.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:26 pm |
  229. Phyllis

    Nobody wants to touch the defense budget. I agree. So forget trying to balance the budget. Nations with small armies and no wars can spend their money on social programs like health care. It's an either or situation. How would you cut spending? No answer? And it is more complicated than simply blaming eleceted officials. Republicans' answer to EVERYTHING is cut taxes, which only makes the deficit larger. Democrats put it off for better times. I like blaming Bush for everything. Hey, That's where it started.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:26 pm |
  230. Anna in Itasca, Ill

    He needs to cancel all private business contracts and hire american people to do the work. This would decrease unemployment and we would find out that private busness is overcharging us and sending our jobs to India and China and skimming billions of dollars for themselfs.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:26 pm |
  231. Jim Wright

    I'm a federal civil servant. I'm also a retired military person. Through all the federal, state and local cutbacks; furloughs; layoffs; freezes in social security and hiring freezes the federal government still believes it fashionable to give pay raises and performance bonuses to its "well paid" for the most part civilian workforce. I'd like to make more money – like most other people I know I guess. But, it has come high time for ALL cost of living allowances for ALL federal employees exxcept active duty military and law enforcement to be put on a moratorium for no less than 2 years. And then, COLAs should only be given no more than every two years.

    Just sayin

    February 1, 2010 at 7:27 pm |
  232. Deo Tossou

    All those folks in DC should be replaced by true working americans and then we will see a real change. We only rely on rich people to tell us what is good for us in America. we won't get anything good for us if we expect them to improve this disastrous economy.
    Deo Tossou, Indiana

    February 1, 2010 at 7:27 pm |
  233. Lawrence White

    WITH CORRECTION

    You know what drives me crazy Jack? We finally elect someone who is legitimately working to resolve these huge problems (and in fact is having some success) and pundits such as yourself lump him in with the free spending so called conservatives who refuse to take the slightest responsibility for this enormous financial disaster. In fact they use their own debacle to diminish our President who is cleaning up their mess.

    So what would I do Jack? I would follow Mr. Obama and be damned thankful we have him on the job.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:27 pm |
  234. Josh

    Id propose that congress work more, quit taking so many breaks and stop giving themselves raises while everyone else in america is struggling to get by there suppossed to be helping but recentyl the only thing they seem to be helping is themselves

    February 1, 2010 at 7:27 pm |
  235. Cary Giese

    The deficit is a result of both cost and revenue shortfalls, not just high cost. Stimulating the economy to increase jobs requires both increased cost and tax cuts, and we cannot cut defense, homeland security or interest payments. Politicians should be required to address both
    in every interview!!! Looks like timing is the key. Jobs first.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:27 pm |
  236. Steve D

    Step 1 cut off all payments for illegal immigrant services and deport all illegals located. Step 2 bring all of our troops home and send them to any country that feels they need them on a pay as you go system. Step 3 put in term limits thus limiting the size of congressional retirement packages. Step 4 fire the fed and go back on the full gold standard. Step 5 pass an amendment requiring all old debt to be paid in full before any new spending can be approved. I got lots more where this came from but I think the five step plan is all that is needed to do the job now.

    Steve D
    New Windsor, Maryland

    February 1, 2010 at 7:27 pm |
  237. C.Hearn

    Cut subsidies like government underwriting sugar producers or cattle producers or mega farm corporations; the list goes on. Think of those kinds of subsidies as welfare for the rich. We can do without welfare for the rich. Those of us in the middle class are tired of doling out our hard earned money to big business. When we are gone they'll have to support themselves, maybe they should get used to it.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:27 pm |
  238. Kenny, in Missouri

    My plan would be a 3 prong attack......
    Roll back Congress and the senates pay to reasonable levels.....
    Ban all Lobbying....
    Impose this very important rule for law making....ONE BILL AT A TIME -ONLY-NO add on measures or pork orders allowed.
    If these BUMS had toactually beat thru each law or bill instead of bilking the American taxpayers as in the past maybe they would be worth their pay.
    THEY are the ONLY reason we are now VERY nearly broke!!!!!

    February 1, 2010 at 7:27 pm |
  239. Bob

    Jack –
    Is your questioning matrix mature enough to take a grownup answer, or are we required to muck around in the childish, puerile subject matter of mainstream America?

    There are two immediate mature answers, action on both that will handle whatever deficit you mention; War – and Bush's tax cuts giveaway to the wealthy. You're good at math, jack – you know with no shadow of discussion that the US in its present configurration can no longer afford the 500 million dollar airplanes we're building, the cost of sending thousands of troops to fight with native tribesmen, the $1000 a day mercenaries, and on and on.

    WE CANNOT AFFORD WAR ANYMORE. We're lousy at it, for one thing: get our troops trapped in cities, fighting for NO discernible cause, destroying infrastructure and real estate of other countries.

    That's not even logic 101 – it's a pre-logic survey course.
    Bob

    February 1, 2010 at 7:27 pm |
  240. L.Raganit

    How about cutting spending on oversea bases that are located in non conflict areas. Its about time our friends spend their own money in defense of their country. Especially when they are not sending troops to help us fight El Quida.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:28 pm |
  241. Hamzah

    And, I am a registered independent, Jack.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:28 pm |
  242. Pete

    Dear Jack - We should put an end to the obsolecent and dismally unsuccessful "war on drugs" . This hugely expensive reincarnation of prohibition has bought us gang warfare, violence and the world's largest per-capita prison system. At the very least this socialistic disater should be thorooughly reformed!

    February 1, 2010 at 7:28 pm |
  243. Kathleen

    The budget's primary goal is to boost job creation. That can't be done while also reducing the deficit. People need to realize these are two conflicting goals and that the government's success at one will come at the expense of the other.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:28 pm |
  244. Linda Kirgan

    OK...train the unemployed to audit medicare claims.., might as well put them to work & kill two birds w/ one stone. Train more inspectors for our food sources... I don't mind paying taxes if we, the People, are getting something for our money. Sure don't mind government employees if they're doing something for ME. Get the illegals off the dole roles and make the people hiring them (here) pay for their benefits. Lots of savings there. Shall I continue?
    Linda, Belfair, WA

    February 1, 2010 at 7:28 pm |
  245. Robert, Minneapolis

    Jack,

    DoD is not sacred, we have over 700 military installations overseas including Japan and Germany since WWII, why are we still there? It is an expense to maintain those bases. Cut 10% from the DoD budget.. Give education back to the states, cut the Dept of Education. Raise retirement requirements for social security, entitlements are the only way to reduce the deficit. Cut congressional staffs by 50% maybe then the members would have to read the bills they propose and we could get some sensible legislation.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:28 pm |
  246. b hannon

    could the govt generate income from other sources? revenue from casinos, high rise condos or shopping centers? i know the donald trumps of the country wouldnt be happy but if it would allow the govt to spend the money they need without raising taxes and maybe even lowering taxes, what is the problem?

    February 1, 2010 at 7:28 pm |
  247. Sue From Idaho

    Only elect one senator and congressman from each state and don't pay their health insurance.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:28 pm |
  248. Bill Singerhoff

    Jack, don't get rid of the Post Office but find a way to spend less on City Letter Carrier uniforms. Perhaps a cap and open collared knit shirts and let them pay for the rest to include shoes. That alone could save millions of dollars each year. Believe me, I used to be one.

    Second, make states receiving federal money for highways start issuing contracts to cut the wait time for completion, with penalties when projects are not completed on time. These highway contractors continuously overcharge and then add additional for overruns.

    Third, the Defense Department should stop issuing specs for equipment and let the contractors spend their R&D money to develope what we need. We spend billions with our specs and change orders to contracts just so we can tell them what we want and then change our specs numerous times. Let them develope them.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  249. Kent Riddle

    Pass the Fair Tax legislation. We pay only on what we consume and keep all that we earn.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  250. kyle

    Cut senseless government transportational expenses at the federal, state, and local levels. Stop the forteen car lineup for every politican's appearance and meaningless commuting habits of state and federal officals. Maybe then they might have the money to invest more in education and small businesses.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  251. James

    Budget is not the problem but the bunch of senators.
    Okay, lets cut the Budget Jeff: Freeze both all the government employee pays for three years; increase taxes on wall street; free import of goods from china indefinitely meaning until the US government all the fund borrowed from them are paid back; The Government should then contact me to crelandsate 2 million jobs in the next 12 months for the rest Jeff, get a pizza.
    James From the Nether

    February 1, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  252. Tom from Vermilion, Ohio

    Until the unemployment reaches 5% in all states, no individual whose corporation, business, practice and/or educational receives stimulus and/or grant money shall have a salary greater than $150,000 per year.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  253. Vick R Welsh Orange Park, Fl

    Jack, I would down size congress, Who need two Senators when one could repesent a state? If we cut the number of Congressmen in half would we still have equal repesentatives. Business down size in tuff time why not government? Cut the supreme court to 5 justices while you are at it. Cut the cost of salaries and retirement. By the way congress has already voted themself a pay raise.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  254. Corinne

    Hey Jack, how bout the politicians take a pay cut to get started..From local levels to national levels. Mainstreet has lost so much but our politicians keep up their lifestyes, travel agendas and constant rhetoric. We need REAL PEOPLE, REAL GOVERNMENT!

    February 1, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  255. David P Vernon

    Tucson, AZ – The one thing I would do that is not already being proposed by the Obama Administration is to put a "means test" into every entitlement program- Social Security, farm price supports, and every other program where the US sends a check to someone because they filled out the right paperwork. Nobody that makes a good living otherwise, based on adjusted gross income, should get a dime of entitlement funds. These programs were supposed to help the needy, needy farm families, needy elderly, needy disabled, etc. Let's restrict them to that – if you do not need it, you should not get it. Should a guy like Warren Buffet get Social Security just because he is old and worked?

    February 1, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  256. Brian from Brooklyn

    What can Obama do? NOTHING. When defense cuts and higher taxes are off the table there are very few options!! Even Reagan and Bush RAISED taxes when they had to. Some of Reagan's tax hikes – The Tax Equity and Fiscal Responsibility Act, Highway Revenue Act of 1982, raised the social security tax rate, and the signing of the Deficit Reduction Act of 1984. Of course todays Republicans would pretend this never happened.

    And let us not forget... no military cuts????

    February 1, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  257. George Shillington

    Reduce government spending by bringing home troops from Afghanistan, and put space travel and exploration on hold.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  258. Gary Klint

    Cut NASA completely along with the NEA, NSF, both wars and look at what is being spent for defense. Look at what we are currently spending for so called foreign aid. It seems stupid to support countries, yes even Israel with borrowed money from China that we pay interest on.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  259. Gary - Woodhaven, Michigan

    I'm one of the morons who believe that we cannot totally eliminate the deficit in one year, or totally by cutting spending. What you are suggesting is doing away with spending, impossible.

    I also believe Obama to be no fool, I refuse to believe that he intentionally is trying to bankrupt the country, get real Jack.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  260. Matt Ford

    The first way to cut government spending is to eliminate foreign aid.

    Many countries like Israel have robust economies and are doing just fine without our money.

    The second way would be to stop getting involved in all these wars. We don't pay attention to our own borders and yet we are fighting to protect the borders in other countries.

    We need to make some " home repairs " in our government first before we start playing " Mr. Handyman. " in other countries.

    Matt Ford, M.P.A.
    Bethlehem, Pennsylvania

    February 1, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  261. Mila

    Fire the administration, and draft competent people.

    The largest expense is from the administration not doing their job, incompetence, and special interests.

    They could e.g. stop the housing market crisis by converting the flexible interest loans to non-flexible with the original interest, federal government covering the difference.

    That had been much cheaper than bailing out the banks, when they stopped getting mortgage payments, due to foreclosure.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  262. Terry Hampton

    Billions, no, I suspect TRILLIONS, would be saved by closing down unnecessary military installations all over the world. We have 21st warfare capabilities, yet we continue to 'think" and 'use' military ground fighting that is outdated!
    Bring the troops back to America. Open some of those closed bases near towns that are in dire need. There are always civilian jobs available on military installations, and the nearby economy is always helped!
    Our troops would be here in our coutry, at the ready to defend our country at a moment's notice.
    Of course, we could still have the diplomats in countries and our nuclear subs near worrisome areas to still show our strength!
    I've spent my entire life on military installations all over the world as a child and an adult, and I've seen the waste first hand, so don't think this is coming from some anti-military person!

    February 1, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  263. Lita Ritz

    One thing is to bring our troops home. They are fighting a losing battle in Afhganistan. This will have a significant cut in our deficit. Do we really need military bases around the world? We have the CIA and special operatives on land and our satelites in space. Are the military bases outside United States necessary? I don't think so. The government should stop helping the banks with tax payer's money. That too would be a significant amount. Congress and the President should stop being arogant and try to reach a comprise on the issues at hand. They have now until November of this year, election time.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:29 pm |
  264. Adam ( age14)

    Mr. Cafferty... We need a revolution!! The happy days must come back, no longer must we rely on the government to solve our problems, but we should rely on ourselves. If we really care enough, we the people must take the government, heck the country back! We need to use our genetic engineering to bring back jimmy hendricks or Bob Marley, or find out the aging gene to bring Bob Dylan back to 'The Times They Are a'changin' days. But on a serious note, i dont think it's all government spending, must of the money is just being spent wrong. some go to high corporat companies, some go to big bail outs that just give those who do wrong another chance to do wrong with out punishment. Money should go to americans, to the small businesses that line our street corners. The biggest things we need is a leader, and how horrible it was to see Ted Kennedy pass away. We need leadership to show its pretty face and get us back the top!

    February 1, 2010 at 7:30 pm |
  265. luay marji

    remember, goverment isnot respossible for everything ,have faith in people give them jobs they will make money and pay for own healthcare ,here i just saved you one trillion dollar

    February 1, 2010 at 7:30 pm |
  266. Elyse

    Congress and Senate should be a 2 term deal...that's it! They make minimum wage and good healthcare while working for the American people. Then they leave, no pay benefits for the rest of their lives, no healthcare for the rest of their lives...who knows, this may also eliminate Lobbyists...they would not have all those years to buy off our representitives...
    Actually, that's a great idea on how to save money...stop paying these representitives so much...the positions were not created to make millionaires out them...let's get a Barber, hair dresser, baker and just plain people with plain good sense.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:30 pm |
  267. Chris Thome

    Jack, I would really like to see on your show or even on CNN online a pie chart of the 2009 Bush Budget (which did not include military spending) and the new 2011 Obama budget. The American people are very visual. I would like to at least compare the pieces of the pie!

    February 1, 2010 at 7:30 pm |
  268. William Courtland

    I wouldn't I would just make America profitable again. I would the increase spending on that promise.

    What is the Colosseum worth? In stone, in craftsmanship, in history?

    America possess the Arc of the Covanent, the Sword Excalabur if it cared to search a bit.

    Then the excuse to move some buildings because of new infrastructure projects might stubble upon such national treasures... Sure it exists Moses Made this one, and the Sword well: Theseus pulled it out for you all to have... Just simple tools, but what is the net worth of those items?

    Currency is just a tool, it comes with indexes and rating systems.

    The value of Gold is found valuable in function, and is no more or no less worth Hydrogen than its base Au, yet the amount of it causes problems when needing to be making tools but instead making functionless jewelry...

    Balance points... Taxes, fines, duties, levies... Customs and only with due representation.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:30 pm |
  269. Rory Murray

    Jack,
    First: End all No-Bid, Cost-Plus contracts with Haliburton, Blackwater and all of the other MERCENARIES. Send them home.
    Second: Base the pay scales of ALL elected officials on the economy. Make them take a 20% pay cut until the economy turns around. Only then, would they get a raise.
    Third: Eliminate all private jets , except Air Force One and Two. If Pelosi wants to take her friends on a trip to Copenhagen or anywhere else, she should do it on her own dime.
    Four: End overtime pay for Prison Guards-In California, some of the make half a MILLION each year.
    Five: End Pensions for School Superintendents, and greedy Teachers Union Members.
    Six: Build Prisons in Mexico to house the Illegal Alien offenders.
    Just a start, but a damn good one!

    Rory Murray
    San Bernardino, CA

    February 1, 2010 at 7:30 pm |
  270. Bob

    Let's cut the deficit by restoring/raising the tax rates on those earning more than $250,000 a year. We see wall street personnel and ceo's and entertainment and sports personalities with more money than they know what to do with. Under Eisenhower the upper classes paid a 90% tax rate and even at the start of the Reagan years it was more than 70% for the upper tax brackets. It is about time that the very wealthy paid their fair share for living in a country that even permits such obscene wealth to be exploited by the few at the expense of what at one time was called the middle class. What sane person would ever have imagined that we could fight two wars, and cut taxes at the same time. Pittsfield, Massachusetts

    February 1, 2010 at 7:30 pm |
  271. Bryan Guzman

    I would start by abolishing policies that are counter constitution. I would abolish the Department of education and hand public education to the states where it belongs. I would privatize NASA and have the Air Force Space command send up spy satellites for the DOD instead.

    I would consolidate the intelligence services into the military and remove rudundancies in services, this means some intel organization will likely be abolished.

    I would cease "discretionary" spending like funding for pet projects. I would bring much of our overseas forces home, our days of policing planet Earth are over.

    There's more, but you get the idea.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:30 pm |
  272. Dan

    Jack,

    I would scale back the stimulus spending and focus only in areas that will grow the economy long term such as manufacturing and new technology programs as opposed to infrastructure projects which are only shoring up the present day economy and will collapse after the projects are completed. We need to focus on the future and not pet projects.

    Another area would be to down size goverment. Do we need all the czars? Two senators per state? Wny not one? Same for the number of representatives!

    Dan

    February 1, 2010 at 7:30 pm |
  273. MB Sommers

    Dear Jack,

    I think we should simply close down Washington DC -putting a hold on all federal operations for a year or two or three – to solve the current budget crisis. Do you think anyone (other than those lining their pockets) would really notice much of a difference?

    MB
    Sterling, VA

    February 1, 2010 at 7:30 pm |
  274. andrew in pinehurst, nc

    Government spending would be reduced by establishing term limits. 3 two year terms for Representatives, 2 four year terms for Senators, and 1 six year term for President. There would be less influence by special interest and lobbyist. To make things easier for our leaders, make pork barrell illegal. Hold spending to the annual cost of living, and finally, kick all the illegals out of the country.

    On second thought, why not require a balanced budget annually, as the states require?

    February 1, 2010 at 7:30 pm |
  275. Val Myers

    Offer Government employees awards for tending money-saving ideas which are actually used. The fiscal year ends every Sept 30th, and each federal office is alloted so much money to be used. If savings occur within the Oct thru Sept period, heads of those offices are (or used to be) told "Spend it or lose it", meaning "If you don't spend all the money you're alloted for this year, they may take money away from your allotment for next year. Take that mentality and file it in the circular file.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:30 pm |
  276. spendingtrainer4government

    Reorganized, downsize and restructure government departments and personnel. Too many personnel with too few duties and responsibilities.
    The government want to emphasize on green energy using old techniques and methods. Government managerial methods are simply too old and obsolete to fit today's advancement of technology and high tech personel
    I would also eliminate the Democrats and Republican Parties and make it one just one party,,,,The United States of Americans.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:30 pm |
  277. m peterson

    Let's face it. It is disingenuous to think that all of a sudden we are spending too much money. The problem lies in the fact that we did not raise taxes to pay for an expensive war for which we are now paying the price, coupled with the fact that we paid big money to keep the country from going into a disastrous financial and economic depression. Don't for a minute forget that it was this money that prevented a far worse collapse and saved jobs even in the face of high unemployment numbers. But people still need jobs. Where do we go from here? For those who say "cut taxes," I ask "how on earth do you suggest we pay for all of this?" We must have taxes, but we can also start cutting our military involvement in foreign wars, which have served as recruiting tools for our enemies.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:30 pm |
  278. Chris

    Bring Congressional benefits in-line with their constituents

    No pension; 401K only, sorry we can't afford matching until we have a balanced budget.
    No medical after we vote them out. Let's see how they like COBRA.

    Social Security
    Do not provide an increase when the COL index drops. Can't have it both ways.

    Change the tax code to raise money for the federal government without using it for social engineering.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:31 pm |
  279. Brian from Brooklyn

    And Richard Green hit some other nails on the head.

    You know... I personally believe now is the time for tax and spend. It is far superior to Republicans BORROW and spend. Not to mention American taxes are probably too low anyway.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:31 pm |
  280. Bob Ross

    Question: How much do we give to foreign governments, and to which governments?

    February 1, 2010 at 7:31 pm |
  281. sid wynder

    Term limits in congress.. Doesn't eveybody in America get a job review every year beofre they get a pay increase.. So should congress except they should take money away from them if the hurt america. The President Should also be able to fire congress people for a variety of reasons. Like insuborination, being to dang old or incoherant, drugs and alcohol abuse etc etc.. Just like any other job in America where you could be terminated for these things.. But after all has been said its a good ol' boys system in washington where everybody just seems to be business as usual while the country pays for there mistakes. Big Corporate Business doesnt want things to change either thats why Obama get smeared for everything he does.
    As far as the Space Exploration goes they should be investing in new propulstion technogies. The old rockets arent fast enough to go to MArs and beyond. I think we all ready have alien technology that can ttraverse the stars but big business wants to exploit our ignorance once again by using this out dated technology to it fullest... We need a revolution to get this crap figured out becuz its bizness as usual in washington and the President can't stop these Mother F#$#@rs...

    February 1, 2010 at 7:31 pm |
  282. David from Hawaii

    I propose a Million-Law law to allow citizens to have atleast a chance to understand one part of the govenment in a single lifetime. Each government department would be limitied to one million laws. This way, the politicians will be fighting over which law is best (not most profitable for themselves.) In10 years, congress will be directed to determine which laws are useless, and which give the country true assets and value. After 10 years, politicians will be practically useless, since there can only be a new law if an old law is discarded.
    oh yea, this will help lower government spending, too

    February 1, 2010 at 7:31 pm |
  283. Harry C Tabak

    Mr Cafferty,
    I would first cut the military budget by $50 billion in each of the next three years for a starter. Why we have so many military bases around the world and why we're in South Korea with 50,000 troops for over 50 years now in outrageous and insane. The President needs to get serious about this runaway military and the industry's paranoia of excuses for increased spending.
    Secondly, I would ask the president to show some gutsy leadership and ask all the political leaders to cut their salaries for one year. The President can offer to forgo his entire salary. Let's see some real sacrifices and gutsy leadership.
    Thirdly, I would ask all citizens who can afford to make a contribution towards an Education Emergency Fund to minimize any cutbacks in our budget for this important department.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:31 pm |
  284. Frank

    1 Make Congress use the same Social Security system we use
    2 Stop their full salaried retirement system, make them use ours
    2 DRIP on them (Don’t Return Incumbent Politicians)

    February 1, 2010 at 7:31 pm |
  285. John Bosshardt

    Jack,
    How about cutting the salaries in half on Capitol Hill!
    Cut out their health insurance completely!
    Stop any Lobyists approaching "OUR Representatives" and
    make it a Ferderal offence for them to promote their private ventures!

    Now all Corporation must pay a 10% tax bases on their sales whatever it may be insurance, pharmacueticals, banking etc.

    Make it law that those companies that receive federal bail out repay the bail out with a 3% interest attached to this over the next ten years!

    This is just for starters!

    A new law is needed to be able to fire anyone on Capitol hill without severance pay or health insurance.

    They scare the hell out of the people it is time for the people to scare the hell out of them and make them work for a living!

    John form Oregon

    Keep up the great work Jack!!!!!!!

    February 1, 2010 at 7:31 pm |
  286. Frank Cristiano

    Jack, here is the real way to cut spending. Take two hours a day to display budget proposals by these clowns who represent us on let's say c-span. Then let the people vote on each one yes or no by just pressing their cable remote button. The average person is just struggling to get by so I am sure that the wild goose in Alaska will unfortunately not get funded this upcoming year. It's simple stupid, we need to take the vote away from these people who say they "represent us" and let us truly decide what we need and do not need, instead of the lobbyists with big money getting to make those decisions. We need to really wake up. God help us!

    February 1, 2010 at 7:32 pm |
  287. janet

    Jack –
    The only way to cut government spending is to stop giving handouts. to every Tom, Dick and Harry. Just heard this morning on the news that the government is going to start paying subsidies to those who trade in their old washing machines, dryers, refrigerators, etc. Just another "Clunker Program". This is insane and must be stopped. We have to vote the bums out!!!!

    February 1, 2010 at 7:32 pm |
  288. Theresa

    They should start with themselves. Stop putting up employees up in executive suites (one situation I know of is where the Government was paying $1600 a night for 1 employee to stay in a penthouse apartment on the outskirts of DC). The employee was to be there for a 2 month period, add up that savings on just 1 individual. Then they need to look at who they are giving government vehicles to and what kind of vehicles they are purchasing. SUVs are a luxury no one can afford and especially not on the taxpayers back. SUVs are being given out to government employees. There is usually one individual driving that vehicle and not only are we picking up the tab for the vehicle but the gas as well. Shame on them, this is a long time practice that needs to be looked into.

    Pittsburgh, PA

    February 1, 2010 at 7:32 pm |
  289. Gail, Illinois

    The budget should be created by a partisan committee with the caveat that no budget, no job. In other words, if a budget is not produced by a prescribed deadline, the seats of all members of the committee will be filled by a special election in their respective states. I think they would get the job done.

    Also, it's about time that we disallow all lobbying of congress bycorporation with an operating budget over $1M.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:32 pm |
  290. Greg Giles

    Stop Ploesey from flying from San Fransisco to Washington and back twice a week at our expence. If you want that job you need to live there.And another thing TAKE away the health care for federal employees until they can figure out how to fix it. fix my spelling if you use this. Thanks

    February 1, 2010 at 7:32 pm |
  291. Paul Carey

    I would start by getting back to the basics. In life and government you have the infrastructure of the budget. Local Government it is Power ,water, roads , Police and fire. The federal government is the same. There are a few more and I don't know what they are but the concept is the same
    They need to stop giving our money to the arts and any special project associated to government grants ( the study of anything). They also need to stop giving any money or food stamps to Illegal immigrants. If your not a citizen of this country we can't afford you at this time "sorry". This is not easy but who do we take care of first. I believe it should be the tax paying citizens of this great country.
    Thank you

    February 1, 2010 at 7:32 pm |
  292. Steve from Edgewood NM

    Jack,

    The first and best step to reducing the deficit would be to put a screeching halt to lobbying.... Bloated government budgets at all levels, local, state and federal, are mostly due to the relentlessly overwhelming special interest lobbyists' assaults on our elected officials, and the resulting legislative/executive branches' attempts to fullfill the lobbyists wildest dreams (requests/demands). With lobbying outlawed, then Congress, the President, and state and local governments could get down to the business of taking care of the interests of the people who actually voted for them, NOT catering solely to the vested special interest groups and multinational corporations who lined their pockets with cash and gave them "perks" beyond all sense, reason or propriety... START THERE.... then call me up and ask me what's next.... and FYI, it wouldn't involve cutting the space program...

    SteveC
    Edgewood NM

    February 1, 2010 at 7:32 pm |
  293. michael di meglio

    Jack,

    You cut spending by getting out of NATO. This would release over 100B dollars easy.

    Next you get out of Japan. Think of sixy years of protecxting the second most powerful economy in the world. How did they get to be #2? You got it our military protection.

    Next you goet out of Korea. This is another top economy in the Far East. For the life of me, I don't know what we are doing except increase their stand of living.

    I think mother nature did us a turn when the volcano in the Phillipenas took us out of there saving us over 1B dollars.

    Next is the UN. We are the largest contributor to the organization and they don't seem to do anything except issue resolutions. They do squat and we should pull out of UN.

    World Trade will go on and be stronger for it.

    Next subsidies issued for stabilization of things like sugar and milk.

    The marketplace has to be better without the Gov't getting involved.

    Let's get paid for our intellectual property. Everything from drugs to movies.

    Get out of the WTO. What good is it if we and they look the other way.
    How does the Oil Cartel get away with what it is doing. here is the competition?

    I think we should sell our military services for a fee. We help others without getting anything in return. This has got to stop.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:33 pm |
  294. Dennis Jindra

    1. Term limits for both houses of Congress...good enough for the president, good enough for the "clowns" that spend the money
    2. Bring all the troops home. End these prolonged no-win wars...remember Viet Nam anyone?
    3. End all earmarks.
    4. Pass legislation that limits the cost of government to a percentage of the gross tax receipts collected. Period. No deficit financing

    February 1, 2010 at 7:33 pm |
  295. Dan in Misery

    Stop all foreign aid. We borrow money from the Chinese to bribe other countries to do what we want them to do. How stupid is that?
    We also have to stop participating in unnecessary wars. What good will it do to defend other countries if we bankrupt it with our military. Bring the soldiers home and have them secure our borders. If we have a surplus of money we don’t have anything other good use for we can always start another war, we are getting good at that.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:33 pm |
  296. Jack

    As with any business, you cut costs. Since the average government job pays more that private industry, the government should enact a across the board salary cut for ALL federal employees, which includes congress. Then reduce every employee yearly paid vacation by 1 day per year. Then cut back on the number of federal paid holidays. Most business pay for 8 to 9 holidays per year. Federal government should do the same. Not sure what the amount would be, but bet it would be substancial.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:33 pm |
  297. Guy from Hawaii

    Is SPENDING the problem...or is it what the government is spending it on? "Guns and butter" no longer applies (i.e. we make war our economy thrives) those days are over. (Sorry Mr. Cheney...you had a good run) Re-appropriate!!! Get our troops out of foreign countries and occupy places like South Chicago (how many kids got killed going to and from school last year in that area?). And don't give me the "civil liberties B.S. what about the civil liberties of the innocent, good citizens walking the streets. Take care of the people in this country living in third world country conditions! That condition has existed for years! Spend the money here...keep the profit here! Invest in our country, our people and the rest will take care of itself! You know...it's so simple no one will buy it!

    February 1, 2010 at 7:33 pm |
  298. Gary from AZ

    fire every one of the crooks let them find jobs like the rest of us are trying to do go hungry like the rest of us !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    February 1, 2010 at 7:33 pm |
  299. Sandra H Howerton Rocky Mount, NC

    Since we spend more on so-called defense than all other countries in the world combined, and much of that expenditure is counterproductive (e.g. the war in Iraq), cutting military spending seems an obvious place to start.. Cut it to the point that Presidents have to think twice before sending our troops on fools' errands and have to raise taxes to pay for it if they do. That way, we will all have to share the sacrifice involved in military missions at least to some degree.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:33 pm |
  300. Bill in Texas

    First, I would cut and/or eliminate administrative costs in Washington. Our Government is a non profit organization run by elected citizens chosen to serve their nation. They were not originally hired for pay, and do not need such luxurious amenities. Nancy P. can start taking the bus.

    Second, reorganize the prison system. Make it self sufficient or even better profitable. US citizens were victimized by such incarcerated criminals and are further victimized by the expense of holding them within state and federally funded prisons. Having said criminals work to support the cost of their imprisonment is truly an eye for an eye.

    Third, eliminate welfare and replace it with a social work program with a minimum wage pay scale for privately outsourced state and federal infrastructure projects. Time card = Pay Check

    Fourth, eliminate foreign aid. Allow foreign aid after national debt is relieved.

    This would be a good start.

    February 1, 2010 at 7:33 pm |