detroitruin

An abandoned neighborhood in Detroit

Patrick J. Buchanan asks, “Are Illinois and Puerto Rico Our Future?”  Like Greece, the US Virgin Islands and Guam, as well as the Cities of Detroit, San Bernardino and Stockton, governments throughout the West are finding progressive taxes are unable to keep up with the costs of progressive programs.  Even federal services such as the US Postal Service and AMTRAK run deficits at or near $1 billion every year. Ironically, the progressive state is unsustainable.

The President’ budget proposal appears true to his campaign promises and includes the following elements:

Budget Blueprint for 2018:
• provides for one of the largest increases in defense spending without increasing the debt;
• significantly increases the budget for immigration enforcement at the Department of Justice and the Department of Homeland Security;
• includes additional resources for a wall on the southern border with Mexico, immigration judges, expanded detention capacity, U.S. Attorneys, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and Border Patrol;
• increases funding to address violent crime and reduces opioid abuse; and
• puts America first by keeping more of America’s hard-earned tax dollars here at home.

You can read the full budget proposal here: https://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/whitehouse.gov/files/omb/budget/fy2018/2018_blueprint.pdf

federaldebtovertime

Federal Debt Yearly Since 1977

At the close of Fiscal 2016 (Oct.1 – Sept. 30), the national debt had reached $19.57 trillion. That is up $1.42 trillion since the previous fiscal year ended.  (When President Obama took office, the national debt stood at $10.6 trillion.  By the time he leaves office, he will have doubled the national debt by adding $10 trillion of fiscal liabilities.)   Click the graphic above for more details on the federal FY 2016 budget.

Some people are unable to work due to injury, illness or other physical limitation.  These people should, and do, have access to Disability benefits through Social Security.  Some people are able to work, but are temporarily displaced due to layoffs, technology changes or other shifts in the work force.  These people should, and do, receive Unemployment Insurance benefits.  But according to the GAO, in 2014, the US government paid $1.3 billion in disability payments to people who were also receiving unemployment benefits.  Apparently, this mostly wasn’t fraud but incompetence by  the Social Security Agency.  You can read more about this error and other negligent actions resulting in wasted tax dollars here.