US heading for bankruptcy? Issues Beyond Palo Alto, posted by Jag Singh, a resident of the Duveneck/St. Francis neighborhood, on Mar 12, 2007 at 9:56 pm
David Walker, the highly respected head of the General Accountability Office, or GAO, issued a dire warning when he appeared on CBS’s 60 Minutes last Sunday (March 4, ’07). He stated that a far greater threat than “a man hiding in a cave in Afghanistan or Pakistan’, is our own fiscal irresponsibility." Walker, whose job is to audit the government’s books, has concluded that we are heading for a serious financial meltdown, a “dirty little secret everyone in Washington knows”. Politicians are ignoring the inconvenient truth lest they get tainted with recommending unpopular remedies such as raising taxes and/or trimming back entitlements.
Walker is now on a cross country ‘fiscal wakeup’ crusade hoping to stir up the citizenry to pressure politicians to take remedial action to save our ship of state from bankruptcy. He warns of a lack of leadership and truth telling intended to lull our people into a deep slumber and continued delusion of our financial well-being. But, a far greater threat than the obscene Defense budget and our penchant for waging wars, is the massive entitlement programs which if left unchecked will most surely cripple us financially. The economic reality is fast approaching when the baby boomers generation will be jumping on the entitlement bandwagon in January 2008. Three years later, these new retirees will be entitled to Medicare coverage further draining the dwindling resources of the US treasury.
Posted by A resident, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood, on Mar 13, 2007 at 5:09 am
To start putting our fiscal house in order, social security benefits and medicare should be raised to age 70. I realize this will only help a bit, but 65 then 67 assumes a shorter life span. We are all more healthy and living longer in the 21 century, and we should be encouraged to work longer. Like many seniors I can proudly say I'm over 65 and hold down a full time job.
I thought the Republicans were the party of fiscal restraint. George Bush has done more to bankcrupt the U.S. economy than any previous President. We should not be pouring Billions of Dollars into a futile war on terror in Iraq. Now, we hear Halliburton is moving its Corporate headquarters to Dubai and presumably taking all it's ill gotten gains from the U.S. taxpayers with them.
Posted by Carol, a resident of the Old Palo Alto neighborhood, on Mar 14, 2007 at 2:45 pm
Jag Singh: Perhaps this much respected David Walker has a seat waiting for him on the Carlyle Group? It's never too late to sell out. Either that, or early Alzheimer's may account for his present campaign.
No one who belittles the cost of our wars deserves our respect.
Note that Mr. Walker does not suggest that the US will balance its budget by refusing to honor Treasury Bonds. Like entitlements, they also are backed only by the full faith and credit of the US.
Unlike the cost of war, entitlement funds are spent in this country, paying the grocer, the landlord, the retail store. Reducing social security will pull the plug from under the middle class.
We are on our neo-liberal way to having a third-world country in each of our cities, and third-world towns in each of our counties.