I stumbled across this video today and thought it could serve as a basis for an interesting discussion.
Note that this presentation was made by a lady named Caroline, who is a self-described "federal government employee" and "member of the American Federation of Government Employees". Also note that, as I type this, it has a total of 80 views. (I hope that she has enabled Adsense as she is about to get a few hits!)
The first seven minutes or so are facts that we can all agree upon. The deficit is there and to cut it would require some significant changes to the federal structure. Then, at around the 7:00 mark, Caroline proposes her remedies. This is the crux of the matter and be sure to hear her out before you respond.
On one side of the argument, the deficit is not sustainable but government is vital, perhaps even too small, and it needs more funding through higher taxes. These extra taxes will close the deficit.
On the other side of the argument, the deficit is not sustainable and government spending needs to be trimmed and restructured. This slowing of government growth and outright reduction in spending will close the deficit.
My questions to you are:
- How do we reconcile these two points of view?
- Is it possible to achieve the level of political cooperation needed to make it happen?
- Can we discuss this in a civil manner here on TFMR? If not, how can we expect the politicians to do any better?
- Bonus question: What is my point in starting this discussion?