- Bargaineering - http://www.bargaineering.com/articles -

You Fix The Budget

A lot of the political rhetoric during the mid-term elections focused on reducing government spending and reducing the deficit (I found it a little hypocritical considering the average household credit card debt [3] was in the thousands of dollars). That likely prompted the New York Times to put together a little “game” in which you get to fix the budget [4].

Today, you’re in charge of the nation’s finances. Some of your options have more short-term savings and some have more long-term savings. When you have closed the budget gaps for both 2015 and 2030, you are done. Make your own plan, then share it online.

You get a list of programs with estimated savings to the deficit (out to 2015 and 2030), and you’re charged with saving $418 billion by 2015 and $1,355 billion by 2030. The sources of those estimates come from a litany of organizations, many of which you’ve probably seen referred to in other articles, and I’m inclined to take their savings estimates at face value. By playing this game, you start to appreciate how difficult it is to cut the deficit (despite out easy it is to put “fiscal responsibility” on political “to do” list) especially after the reaction to the draft Bowles-Simpson Plan [5].