Categorized | Opinion

The Insanity of Mandatory Spending

Two-Thirds of the federal budget is dictated by law and is considered mandatory spending. If the United States Congress passes a law stating that a benefit is to be given to individuals in a particular circumstance, then the cost of that law, in terms of the cost of benefits, is whatever it is, without oversight or control. If a law is passed that a certain activity or agreement is illegal, the cost to the nation as a whole depends upon the incidence of the prohibited and that cost is spread between local, state, and federal law enforcement.

Money for these programs are not debated as discretionary spending, since it would make very little sense for Congress to pass a law the implementation of which would be perpetually uncertain. Hence, the justification for mandatory spending, the frightening reality of the breadth of our unfunded liabilities (mandatory spending), and the inevitable collapse of our economy. It just doesn’t make sense to endlessly defend the laws, taxes, regulations, prohibitions, programs, and statutes of previous Congresses. This also would force politicians to continually go on record supporting the majority of the spending in this country – and we can’t have that now can we?

I don’t hear anyone calling for a review of the necessity of mandatory spending, nor for a reformation of a system that has produced unfathomable Trillions in unfunded liabilities which we’ll never be able to afford. This is a ticking time bomb… Five, Four, Three, Two, …. nothing? Neither Party is immune from blame and blame is no longer in the interest of the American People who, if they wish to survive economically, need to come together to demand real fiscal responsibility from their federal government.

The obviousness of the problem isn’t debatable. Our government cannot continue spending the wealth of our grand-children and great-grand-children – which is precisely what we are doing. We are spending wealth that won’t be created for another eighty years. No civilization can survive such psychotic irresponsibility. Why do we tolerate it? Well, we are told that if we don’t, we’ll have to close schools, national parks, abandon roads and bridges and railways, and watch as our entire national infrastructure collapses before our eyes. Balderdash!

The truth is, there ought not be any such thing as mandatory spending, as this presumption assumes the infallible wisdom of previous Congresses and their laws. Every law, tax, regulation, prohibition, program, and statute costs our country money. Therefore, every law, tax, regulation, prohibition, program, and statute should come under review every two, four, or five years. Every law, tax, regulation, prohibition, program and statute should be reviewed, critiqued, and reconsidered periodically on the assumption that previous Congresses were not infallible bastions of genius and reason.

The least expensive government would be the government with the least number of laws, taxes, regulations, prohibitions, programs, and statutes. Obviously the absence of all government is certainly not preferable, but our current accumulation of government is untenable. This system of ours will collapse catastrophically and spectacularly. We must change course and I haven’t even begun to hear whispers of a will to address this problem.

So I’m whispering – It has to start somewhere.


About Steven Brodie Tucker

Graduated with a degree in Philosophy from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. Also studied economics and political science at George Mason.

2 Responses to “The Insanity of Mandatory Spending”

  1. CUT DC says:

    Things that make you say, HUH?

  2. Robert Shannon

    Just 2 weeks ago Milton Ezrati, a respected Economist with the Lord Abbott Mutual Fund addressed the recent revisions of the GAO that gave projections over the next 10 years, both on Federal expenditures, along with revenues. Mr. Ezrati found the GAO data somewhat optimistic and in his own revisions projects that within 5 years the Interest on the National debt and entitlements will consume the entire Federal Budget. Defense and everything else will be funded in their entirety with additional borrowed funds. These warnings have been on the horizon for years, the difference being it is now perhaps closer than anyone imagined.

    The unwillingness to confront long overdue entitlement reforms, is cowardly on a level that approaches contempt. It is equally contemptible that the Patriot movement refuses to dig their heels in and take a much tougher line with republicans, naively believing that somehow all that is needed is to elect more republicans. One can only come to the logical conclusion that members themselves fail to understand the gravity , how dire things actually are, or they themselves benefit from these programs and refuse to face the reality for fear of losing benefits .

    Perhaps Saul Alinsky’s instructions to co-opt the middle class has now been effectively realized and their is no turning back. As I have often cited , sending the bill to your kids and grandkids isn’t bloviating or embellishing what is actually taking place, quite to the contrary ,that is exactly what is happening. You keep your house on the River, or your motor home so your 6 year old granddaughter can pay for your prescription medicines. Medicare is paying out almost $2 for every dollar it ever collected in taxes.

    The reforms are out there, and as I told Congressman Rob Wittman a month ago, it isn’t the lack of serious proposals that will work, but the unwillingness of leaders to lead. Both political parties are responsible for what is going to occur, and both will play the “blame the other guy” when it does.

    Some of us fortunately will still be around to remind them of both political parties culpability in what happened.

    Bob Shannon


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Tom White Says:

Nothing is more conservative than a republican wanting to get their majority back. And nothing is more liberal than a republican WITH a majority.

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