December 18, 2014

swinn's blog

Despite Short-Term Drop in Deficit, Key Fiscal Challenges Remain

The administration trecently confirmed a bit of good news about the last fiscal year: the government borrowed substantially less than it did the year before.

But this drop, in line with a previous projection by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), is no reason for complacency. The additional borrowing has still pushed the federal debt to well over $17.8 trillion, and the government remains on track to boost that by $7.2 trillion or more in the coming decade.

Concord Coalition Program Highlights Need for Reform -- and Political Divisions That Get in the Way

Short-term improvements in the federal government’s finances have led to widespread complacency in Washington about fiscal reform.

To Prevent Future Crises, Budget Experts Say, Washington Must Step Up Its Game

If the recent past is any indication of how elected officials will deal with the country’s short- and long-term fiscal challenges, Americans – and especially younger ones – are in trouble.

Washington will have to step up its game.  And ordinary Americans can help by encouraging their elected representatives to forgo political  theatrics in favor of timely budgets and more responsible policies.

Budget Experts Call for Stronger Political Leadership – and a Little Less Stupidity, Please

Reflecting the sour public mood towards Washington, a panel of experts on the federal budget described themselves Thursday night as worried, puzzled, frustrated and disappointed as the fiscal stalemate dragged on.

They faulted top political leaders and other elected officials in both parties for irresponsibility, inflexibility and, in some cases, a lack of common sense.

Eight Reasons Why America’s Fiscal Worries Aren’t Over

This year will mark the end of a four-year string of trillion-dollar-plus federal deficits that have troubled the American public and caused turmoil on Capitol Hill.

Driven to Distraction -- and Creative Accounting

Although Congress has plenty of serious budget work to do, lawmakers in both parties can’t seem to resist frittering away time and confusing the public with various proposals that serve no useful purpose. Last week offered a couple good examples.

Left Behind in Wealth Accumulation, Younger Americans Face Difficult Financial Challenges

Most plans to put the federal budget on a more sustainable path make a crucial assumption: That today’s younger workers will pay more of their own retirement costs than previous generations have.

By setting aside more money for retirement, the thinking goes, these younger workers can enable the federal government to reduce the high projected growth of Social Security and Medicare. They should theoretically be able to do this because they have more time to save large amounts of money and to let those savings compound.

Strengthening of America Forum Highlights Political Obstacles to Fiscal Reform

This week The Concord Coalition and several other organizations kicked off an initiative called Strengthening of America – Our Children’s Future focused on the nation's worsening fiscal situation. Former Senators Sam Nunn (D-Ga.), Pete Domenici (R-N.M.), Warren Rudman (R-N.H.) and Evan Bayh (D-Ind.) have convened a bipartisan group of former members of Congress for a series of forums in the weeks leading up to the presidential debates. Nunn and Rudman are Concord’s

Previously Published Material on Rep. Paul Ryan

Here are links to some previously published material by The Concord Coalition on proposals by House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan, who was named Saturday as Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney's running mate.