Addressing the Debt Now Means Addressing It on Our Own Terms

The 2010 fiscal year just ended, but America’s fiscal crisis has just begun. In 2010, the Congressional Budget Office’s (CBO) preliminary estimates show that the federal government spent $3.45 trillion, amassing a deficit of $1.3 trillion. Spending on entitlement programs, which include Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security, comprised 41 percent of the budget.

And this is just the beginning. By 2050, entitlement programs will consume the entire federal budget. To keep up with this level of spending, the CBO predicts that tax rates would have to grow to 19 percent from 10 percent for low earners, to 47 percent from 25 percent for middle earners, and from 35 percent to a whopping 66 percent for high earners. This level of taxation would cripple the economy

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