25 February 2008

Outgoing Comptroller of GAO Blast Government Irresponsibility

David Walker went off today on our inefficient and increasingly backward government. While I disagree with the portion on Iraq, (yes, the Iraqi government needs to step up some more but they have produced some good legislation lately that is helping the country towards a slow reconciliation. Besides, if they are using our government as a model, it's amazing they are overcoming partisan rifts at all) he's spot on with regard to many issues:

David Walker, comptroller general of the Government Accountability
Office (GAO) has since 1998 been the objectively informed and outspoken
critic of America's balance sheet. He has criticized supporting Iraq's
dysfunctional government, pork barrel spending by Congress, unrealistic
"universal health care plans" we can ill-afford or support, the
escalating risks of huge deficits, fiscal vulnerability to hostile
foreign governments, and a lack of will to reform our government.

Pork is completely out of control in Congress, and while I salute President Bush for stepping up and putting a halt to earmarks in the short term, it is something he should have done from the first day he was sworn in as president. Universal Health Care would be devastating to our budget and our economy as private sector jobs and economic competition would be shattered. The free market and indeed advances in the health care field would be stifled, as would the economy as a whole due to an astronomical increase in taxes. Additionally, if the left truly cared about encroachments on our civil liberties, there would be no rationality in giving our government every single detail of our health records. While the FISA remains controversial in its impact on a small portion of the population who is in direct contact with suspected terrorist, the left is looking for any reason to hand over health care records in violation of our right to privacy as given to us by our Constitution.

The deficit is another issue that must be addressed immediately, and the proper way to do so is not to raise taxes and adopt anti-growth, protectionist policies that the Democratic Party is urging. This will only restrict growth and lower government revenues. Rather, the tax rates should be preserved, if not lowered further, in order to assist small businesses, investors, and indeed, every tax payer in America as the Bush Tax Cuts have lowered the rates on ALL tax payers. To really address the deficit issues, spending in the government must be slashed significantly. A Balanced Budget Amendment is desirable but must be done in a way that provides for national emergencies in terms of natural disasters and national defense, where discretionary spending must be dropped to provide for the common defense while not incurring further debt. Ideally, the best way forward would be to reduce spending to a point where, with the lower tax rates, we could run a surplus which can be used to cut the national debt. In turn, this would reduce the threat that China and other nations pose to us by threatening to flood the world market with our dollar, an economic hostage holding of sorts. This will also strengthen the dollar and benefit every American as our currency would appreciate greatly in value. It's high time the government steps up to the plate and addresses these issues, but the leftist policies of Obama and Clinton will not do it, in fact, they will only make matters much, much worse.


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