This is good. We all would have preferred the Bipartisan Deficit Reduction Commission to find ways to reduce the deficit by lowering taxes and spending more. But that is not ordinarily how arithmetic works. Politicians know this, but can’t say it. Hence bipartisan commissions.
It won’t be abrupt and it won’t end up exactly as described in this draft report. The mortgage interest deduction on second homes and for loans above $500,000 might or might not be phased out (see, for example, here) and the Social Security retirement age might or might not rise to 69 by 2075 (here). (Gosh, would 65 years allow people enough time to prepare for the change?)
Indeed, ‘radical centrist’ Matt Miller argues that the floated proposals – as unpopular as they will be – are not nearly enough. A 15-cent-a-gallon hike in the gas tax? He scoffs. And rightly so – it should be more like a 15-cent annual hike, which one could ‘beat’ at first by hypermiling and, eventually, by trading up to a more fuel-efficient car.
But that the process and discussion have finally begun is good news.
I’m taking the rest of the day off.
Quote of the Day
It was only 80 years from the time Darwin published ON THE ORIGIN OF SPECIES until we detonated the first nuclear bomb. In the lifetime of one person, we went from figuring out where we came from to figuring out how to get rid of ourselves.~Paleontologist Jack Horner
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