As former President Bill Clinton so graciously pointed out in 1992: “It’s the economy, stupid!” So, since the 2011 budget is about $1.3 trillion this year, let’s see how much money could go back to the private sector if we shifted the entitlements to private enterprise for investment: Social Security, 19 percent; Medicare, 13 percent; Medicaid, 8 percent; net interest, 7 percent; and other mandatory programs, 16 percent.
Excluding the net interest, you would have 56 percent of the budget that could be privatized. That’s about $728 billion dollars, which could be invested in our nation’s economy. That would be a real stimulus. That would make the economy sing “America the Beautiful.” We could bring jobs back from overseas. Payrolls would increase. Tax revenues would increase because of increased production and increased consumer spending. The housing market would do a dance of joy.
By privatizing, we could begin to reduce the national debt with the increased tax revenues generated by growth in the private sector. Government payrolls would be reduced. The size of government would be reduced.
Now - for the unthinkable - start using our own natural fossil fuel resources to achieve energy independence. The environmentalists would go straight up and scatter. And our enemies in the Middle East would have much less money with which to wreak havoc on the free world.
Then - perish the thought - use nuclear power plants to provide our electricity. More jobs created. Build oil refineries. More jobs. I don’t know if my heart can stand all of this prosperity.
Enough of this insane twaddle. Back to reality and the status quo. Let the nation sink into the economic oblivion of bankruptcy and the scorn of the world. Allow the Yuan to become the world’s reserve currency and see if I care. Will you care?
It isn’t rocket science you know. Just good business. Good politics, too.
Don Kennedy is graduate of Dartmouth College with a degree in sociology. He has been a resident of Ahwatukee Foothills since 2002.