Thursday, January 20, 2011

How To Balance the Budget: the Republicans Modest Proposal

Via Kevin Drum, the info that Goldman Sachs changed their fiscal year begin date from Dec. 1 to Jan. 1.  They just happened to do it back in 2008, when they stuffed a lot of losses and bonuses into December, which then didn't count.

This triggers my suggestion.  Back in the days of old, the federal fiscal year began July 1.  But Congress started having more and more difficulty getting appropriations bills passed by that date.  So finally everyone agreed to move the fiscal year start date to Oct. 1, a date by which Congress surely would have no problem in passing appropriations. This all was in the late 70's or maybe early 80's.

It's a truth universally recognized that Congress no longer is capable of passing appropriations bills by Oct 1, so we have all the justification we need to move the start of the 2012 fiscal year to Jan 1, 2012.  As we do that, we'll move all the expenditures we can into the transition quarter, between Oct 1 2011 and Dec. 31.  That will enable us to balance the budget in FY 2012.  We can then run for reelection to Congress and our Presidential candidate can run on the basis that we did the impossible: balanced the budget without raising taxes.

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