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How would you lower the national debt and help balance the budget if it were up to you?
By imadanseurPremium member Comments: 16604, member since Thu Dec 04, 2003
On Tue Oct 15, 2013 02:49 PM

There is no perfect way or easy way. My goal would be to try and be as compassionate as possible to middle class America. (maybe I am biased since I fit into that demographic), but I think Congress should let the Bush tax cuts expire. It would mean increasing taxes for those earning more than $250,000 a year. Then my next step would be to increase the rate of capital gains taxes.

I'd drastically cut the Department of Education and hand over their duties to the states (where they can easily be managed.) I'd change pension plans to 401K's for government employees, and completely eliminate lifetime pensions for people who serve in office...or at least serve under a certain amount of years. Honestly, when have you heard of a Senator, or a president that leaves office being broke?

17 Replies to How would you lower the national debt and help balance the budget if it were up to you?

re: How would you lower the national debt and help balance the budget if it were up to you?
By Kekoamember has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 8949, member since Sat Jul 19, 2003
On Tue Oct 15, 2013 04:48 PM
Drastic cuts/reorganization to the military. We're never going to be in a WW1/WW2 scenario again where we need sheer numbers of troops on the ground. Reorganization would allow us to really put the funding in for specialty teams and have a very well-trained reserve. Defense is almost a quarter of the budget.

The biggest piece of the pie, at just over a quarter, is healthcare. I actually am firmly in favor of nationalized health care, but the problem right now is what pharmaceutical and medical equipment companies are charging. It is outrageous. If they were regulated, we would see that cost go down.
re: How would you lower the national debt and help balance the budget if it were up to you? (karma: 2)
By Chaconnemember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member Comments: 6359, member since Thu Jul 12, 2007
On Tue Oct 15, 2013 05:37 PM
Edited by Chaconne (182529) on 2013-10-15 17:40:14 sp
There is a lot of mythology about public pensions and steps for cutting the debt. I basically agree with you about the Bush Tax Cuts, an ill-advised move at the same time we pursued two wars (I won't argue about the rationale for the wars but I personally thought the 2nd Iraq war was not necessary. Topic for another discussion.)

Essentially the pension plan
WAS changed to 401ks for federal employees, including Congress, in 1984. Disclaimer, I am covered by the pre-1984 plan (I was hired in 1964)which on the face of things IS more generous, though for a long-time careerist, such as myself - I was a fed for 35 1/2 years - a 401K plan would have been potentially far more lucrative.

The current plan (almost everyone in the previous plan is now retired) is a hybrid of Social Security (which I didn't pay into as a Fed, but did pay into for pre-federal time and for my private photo business), a much smaller defined benefit, a bridge time to make up the time between retirement and the Social Security age eligibility; and, a 401K with matching grants up to 10% of income. I could also participate in the 401K-like system (it is called the Thrift Savings Plan) but could only contribute 5% of income and no match.

A federal pension, with the Government being the employer, is actually pretty similar to that in any large corporation. It is based upon a combination of actual salary and time in service. If you were a long serving fed, as I was, and stayed in government service for an entire career, it was quite decent. It was also very inflexible which is one of the reasons they did away with it. After one had about 10 years service with the government you pretty much had to be a "lifer" to reap its benefits. If you left the government, you would get your contribution back, but would not get the benefit of time and service if you left before age and time eligibility. We called it "The Golden Handcuffs." The newer plan is far more flexible (your money remains in Social Security regardless of where you worked and the 401K was yours in any event, including the federal match.) As a personnel management tool, the government now encourages a certain amount of alternating between gov't and private employment, something the system I was under made very difficult.

The Budget problem we have is not the result of the government securing the futures of its long-time employees.

Very few elected officials get a lifetime pension. You'd have to be a senator or congressman as long as I was an employee to get anywhere near the benefits I get as an employee. Congress under current law plays by the same rules I had to play under. At the time of the last election for Congress, there were only 8 members out of 535 who were still in the system I was in and Senator Byrd of West Virginia and Senator Edward Kennedy were the only ones who served longer than I did. Both died in office and as a result never even got pensions (not that Senator Kennedy, being independently wealthy needed one.) Any congressperson today has to have at least 5 years of service even to qualify for ANY pension. The pension system is weighted so that the first years of service are weighted more lightly than the later years. One also has to meet an age and service requirement. I started in the government at barely age 22. That is even too young to run for Congress. Most congressmen are elected when in their middle age years, so unless they are repeatedly reelected into old age, would be hard pressed to serve long enough for a substantial pension. To qualify for a pension one must have government service of 30 years at age 55, 20 years at age 60, and 5 years at age 65, the last one congress put in years ago to benefit themselves. Most are independently wealthy in any event...people don't run for Congress to make the money or for the pensions) They are, however, federal employees just as I was and aside from having a higher salary than I did which I don't begrudge them, most could make far more...over half of congressmen are lawyers...have the same benefits I did and have to meet the same tests to take those benefits into retirement. I take my health insurance, and life insurance into retirement. In order for a Congressperson to take health insurance into retirement, they must be there for at least five years to qualify for any pension, and be age 65. The pension must be high enough to pay the employees' share of the premiums (currently about 30%, the Gov't pays a fixed amount, but we have many plans to choose from and we pay whatever the difference is. But over half of the government opts for standard Blue Cross, which is what I have and that is where the 30% figure comes from. I also have Medicare from the time I turned 65. Many congressmen and women simply retain the insurance from their previous employment or a spouse's employment...you don't HAVE to take it.

Had the Thrift Saving Plan been available with current rules and matching grants from the time I started Federal Service, I would be a multi-millionaire today. As it was it was only available for the last 8-9 years of my service and as mentioned I had a ceiling on what I could contribute and no match. I've never had to take anything out until now (Required Minimum Distribution...Uncle wants all those deferred taxes) once a person is 70 1/2 and I am over that age. So I have to start withdrawing from that account. I still have a six figure balance there. My wife and I have not needed any of our long term savings.

Before folks start prescribing what Congress and Federal Employees should or should not be doing vis a vis retirement, I strongly advise that one should look on the Congressional website where the rules are very clearly stated. With only minor exceptions (congressmen's time of service requirements are the same as gov't law enforcement which is slightly shorter than the rest of the Civil Service.) The rules for my retirement and health insurance are a matter of public record as was my salary when employed. It wasn't for free either. We contributed to Medicare, once it was established at the same rate everyone else did and we contributed a far higher premium to our retirement systems (not the 401K) than other folks did. Almost every current Government employee now pays into Social Security (FICA tax.) I didn't. Although I have over 40 quarters in social security from my teen and college age jobs and from my private business, Congress has seen to it I don't get any of that with the "Public Pension Offset Law" which would reduce my Social Security benefit by $2.00 for every dollar I receive in my public pension. (You can see that would zero out very quickly.) I also would not get any survivor benefit from my wife's SS should she predecease me. (BTW she has a state pension from her years as a schoolteacher and principal...we are not poor by any means.)

The President is one of the few elected officials with a defined retirement. Most probably don't need it...they write books, give speeches at very high fees, but the law providing for them was written in response to President Truman, who had no private fortune upon assuming the presidency and was discovered to be living in very financially restricted circumstances once he left the presidency.

Statistically, the nation's budget will not be balanced or unbalanced upon the compensation of the Congress or even upon the salaries of the Civil Service. They are trivial percentages of the total package.

I encourage people who may have good suggestions on these issues to do their homework first. Most of these have been thought of before, but are politically difficult to implement. Exactly the same problem Congress faces today. As a federal employee, I saved the government a lot of money by ferreting out needless programs. I got an award for killing a $500,000,000 program that I persuaded executives was not needed. I also blew the whistle on a contractor I caught fleecing the government. I was also forced to spend a lot of dollars on foolish programs because some congressman insisted an inflated version of my program be done in HIS district. One silly program for which I was assigned to be a technical expert for and for which I served on a White House committee, though I opposed the program, was done solely to appease a certain lobby group. It never was effective by has been costing the nation $50 million per year for the past 23 years. As a representative of my agency, I could not interject my personal views of the program's merit, only to advise on its chance for success (which was zero.) I was even sent to the "woodshed" when a political member of the committee thought I was trying to kill the program (I was, but I was also smart enough to know who was going to prevail.) I recently learned some were now trying to kill the program and they used the quote "You can't legislate the Laws of Physics" which was a direct quote of what I made which were put in the committee minutes. I was laughing up my sleeve.

Jon
re: How would you lower the national debt and help balance the budget if it were up to you?
By Chaconnemember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member Comments: 6359, member since Thu Jul 12, 2007
On Tue Oct 15, 2013 06:08 PM
Kekoa wrote:

Drastic cuts/reorganization to the military. We're never going to be in a WW1/WW2 scenario again where we need sheer numbers of troops on the ground. Reorganization would allow us to really put the funding in for specialty teams and have a very well-trained reserve. Defense is almost a quarter of the budget.



I pretty much agree with Kekoa's assessment. (Not being an expert in healthcare, I'll let other comment on that issue.)

The defense budget is something I do have a fair amount of experience in. I helped to formulate sections of it each year in my later career even though my contribution would have been a barely measurable percentage of even my agency's budget, much less the entire budget. There were thousands of gnomes just like myself working on that sometime even 5-6 years ahead of the program year under development. Though qualified to do this sort of thing, I actually hated doing it and worked very hard to get out of budget shops.

The fundamental problem is that we are always planning for the last war we fought. After WW II we developed tanks, for example, to be able to fight better in a Russian land war than the Germans could. I'll ignore Korea as it was largely fought with WW II technology, save for the jet plane which itself was developed during WW II. So we went to Vietnam and one has to understand the mentality of the time why we needlessly went there with great tanks in an environment totally unsuited to tanks. (That of course is just one example.)

The DOD, which I can assure you has ample ability to spend money (my agency was a part of DOD) has often been forced by Congress to build hardware it doesn't want. The Navy and the Air Force have no real need for the F-35 fighter, but has been forced to build it under congressional pressure from members in whose districts this hardware is built. Dozens of destroyers have been built in Mississippi shipyards because for many years the late Sen. Stennis of Missisippi would hold the entire DOD budget hostage until these ships were approved. (I once had to wait over 18 month to get Sen. Stennis' approval for one of my programs which cost will under $1 million.) The Marines don't want the Osprey, one of the most dangerous aircraft ever conceived. In the first Gulf War (the last one in which I had any role, albeit quite minor) none of the aircraft we had was able to attack Iraqi tank forces. They all flew too fast. What saved the day was the by-then-retired A-10 "Tank Buster" almost all of which were in reserve units (where aircraft go to die) which flew low and slow, had tremendous fire power and caused Iraqi forces to jump out of their tanks and surrender as soon as they saw one. (We still blew up the tanks.)

Multiply scenarios like this many times an you can see the scope of the problems.

Jon
re: How would you lower the national debt and help balance the budget if it were up to you?
By Moonlitefairy06member has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 7177, member since Fri Apr 16, 2004
On Wed Oct 16, 2013 12:03 AM
Not a huge thing, but I think it would make a bit of a difference and I have since I moved to DC and interned for Congress during the debt ceiling in 2011: Charge a small fee at the Smithsonian museums and zoo. Not the monuments or memorials though (maybe to go to the top of GW to help pay for the earthquake damage though). Even if it was a just a dollar per person per museum I think it would be a huge difference. I doubt that would stop many people from going. I'd even make exceptions for school groups or college students etc. I just think it would be a simple place to start that wouldn't be so controversial. There's the argument that the price could just keep going up and up. But that could potentially be squashed by an act of Congress that says that the price can't go up more than once every 20 years or something like that. I'm sure there are better ways to cut spending, but I think this is one way to bring in money without it being a huge burden on society, at least while we continue to work on bigger long term cuts.
re: How would you lower the national debt and help balance the budget if it were up to you?
By Odessamember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member Comments: 11250, member since Tue Feb 26, 2002
On Wed Oct 16, 2013 03:04 AM
Not an American and so perhaps not as across all your policies and governmental procedures as an American might be but here are my thoughts:

1. Tax the rich.
2. Spend less on defence.
3. Put more money into education, science + innovation, research + development, industry + export. Creating products creates money.
4. Small increase for entry into national parks/monuments. It only cost Mark and I $1.50 each to go to the Arizona Memorial, and $10.00 for both of us to drive into the Haleakala National Park. I would have happily paid ten times that amount to visit the Arizona Memorial. Obviously I understand the reasoning behind keeping entry to national parks/monuments low, so that everyone from all economic backgrounds can enjoy them but a small increase would bring in a large amount of income without negatively affecting low income earners and their ability to attend the parks.

(Obviously these suggestions are based on a very cursory understanding of the US budget and the laws surrounding it.)

Good luck America. Please don't balls this up, the rest of the world's economy is depending on you.

Erin.
::righteous babe::
re: How would you lower the national debt and help balance the budget if it were up to you?
By PinUpGirlmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member Comments: 25878, member since Tue Jul 16, 2002
On Wed Oct 16, 2013 07:10 AM
I definitely agree with Renae. Education should be handed over to the states. Granted, I live in GA and we're something like 48th or 49th in the worst education systems in the country last time I checked. In general, I'm a big proponent of states' rights (as sayeth the Constitution). Of course, that would require our governors to not be reactionary dickbags from the very, very right wing.

Cap gains taxes should be on a sliding scale based on your current tax bracket rather than a flat rate. They could ignore state taxes as some states don't have income tax. Those with more money typically have more to invest, thus, they can afford higher taxes.

I'm reminded of the line from Sleepy Hollow, "10% levy on baked goods! You realize the Revolution was started over 2%!".
re: How would you lower the national debt and help balance the budget if it were up to you?
By YumYumDoughnutPremium member Comments: 8688, member since Sat Jul 10, 2004
On Wed Oct 16, 2013 09:05 AM
Edited by YumYumDoughnut (99333) on 2013-10-16 09:07:44
Odessa, I feel that if you tax the rich they would just be moving their business out of America. If you punish people for making a lot of money, I feel that they will lose the incentive to keep producing and contributing to the economy.
Or they will just put it in a Cayman Island account if tax rates go up too high.
I love your idea of charging more for national parks etc. I think that is a wonderful idea.

I feel like they should either start their own Casino or tax Casinos in their state. For example, gambling is illegal in my state. I feel like they should use that extra tax to help support our school systems. Our lottery profits go to the California Education system. It would be cool if the government opened a casino in CA and used those profits for our schools. Not sure how ethical that would be....

I think we should also raise the price of education at the college level, while trying to give better education in high schools. My college tuition was less then $7000 a year. I feel like if they raised it by $500 a student, they could really be raising that money and tunneling it into our public high school and elementary schools.

I think they should legalize weed and tax it heavily. The government will have better control over the quality, and if they can make tax money off something that is already do heavily circulating our system, that would be good. Also raise taxes on cigarettes.

Pinup, I also laughed at the line during Sleepy Hollow! I can't watch it at night though.
re: How would you lower the national debt and help balance the budget if it were up to you? (karma: 1)
By PinUpGirlmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member Comments: 25878, member since Tue Jul 16, 2002
On Wed Oct 16, 2013 10:25 AM
Honestly, I think most drugs and prostitution should be legal. I've always been a supporter of legalizing marijuana. Personally, I would never do it or any other drug that's currently illegal. I know a lot of people would disagree with making the "harder" drugs like cocaine or heroin legal. However, if they were dispensed from clean, licensed facilities that know the source of the drugs, that would improve the situation vastly. We wouldn't be funnelling so much money into the "war on drugs" and could use it for other things. If they're subjected to the same limitations as cigarettes or alcohol, states could make a killing. As long as you aren't hurting anyone else, go for it. If you want to do hard drugs, be my guest. It would also put the cartels out of business and help a lot of peoples' lives get better.

The same with prostitution. Have a tax in place for the buyers. It would ensure everyone was disease free and not spend money on prosecuting people who are selling. Those pesky morals are what's getting in the way. If you want to sell your body and someone is willing to pay, then that's your business. As long as everyone is over the age of consent, knock yourself out. If it's all legal, I could see the instances of human trafficking lowering as well.

Politicians need to set aside their personal beliefs and really consider what's going to generate revenue. Our country was founded on the principle that church (personal beliefs and morals) should be separate from the state (lawmaking). As I said, I would never do any drugs that are currently illegal. I wouldn't purchase the services of a prostitute. But I'm not going to stand in the way of those who do and fight tooth and nail to keep it illegal because I might disagree with it on moral grounds. Keep your morals out of your lawmaking.
re: How would you lower the national debt and help balance the budget if it were up to you?
By YumYumDoughnutPremium member Comments: 8688, member since Sat Jul 10, 2004
On Wed Oct 16, 2013 10:42 AM
Edited by YumYumDoughnut (99333) on 2013-10-16 10:48:02
^ Plus those professions probably currently don't pay taxes. Would you really put the earnings of your drug income on a tax return if you knew you would be audited and have to explain your drug business?

By making these things legal, these people can be in a actual occupation and contribute tax wise. If they are able to tax deductions for stuff and people were forced to give recpiets they may be more willing to pay taxes.

I also do think we should cut our military budget. Of course I wouldn't cut veteran care or the paycheck of our military. I just think we should stop policing the world and playing God to other counties. Let every country fight its own battle, or at least only aid if your war allies are attacked.

Although this isn't a huge part of the issue and I know people on welfare and college financial aid who legit need it, but I think we should try to crack down on abuse of the system. For example, I am embarrassed to say that my aunt decided not to get married because her future husbands income was too great. They lived together, he paid all her bills and they had a child together. Because she was officially a " single mom" she got over $2000 a month to support her education and she just pocketed it because her future husband was paying for all her expenses. Your tax dollars were paying for her mani and pedi and LV bags.
The loophole for federal financial aid in colleges need to be fixed. fasfa is a dick where they look at parents income even if they aren't contributing....yet if you are over 24 and are fully supported by someone else, they don't take that into account if you aren't married.
re: How would you lower the national debt and help balance the budget if it were up to you?
By Gioiamember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member Comments: 3024, member since Sun Jun 20, 2004
On Wed Oct 16, 2013 05:22 PM
I agree with Renae when it comes to education, I think we need a lot less government intervention, give the power to the states.

Tax CUTS and trade reform to stimulate business, too many companies benefit from operating outside of the US, there needs to be some stimulus to bring them back!

I don't currently see an issue with government pensions, it is not unlike many other companies (in fact my dad's pension is far nicer). Any small issues there might be is just peanuts when looking at the whole budget.

Cut defense in half.

Demand a balanced budget, it really shouldn't be that hard. I am going to try to find the numbers that I saw sometime last week. I know everyone is freaking out about the debt ceiling and it is making people think that omg the US has so much debt it will never be able to pay it back... no. Some of the figures I keep seeing quoted are about the deficit. However, that is completely ignoring the fact that the US GDP (gross domestic product) is still about a trillion dollars higher than our current debt! Yes, the gap between the two has been dwindling for quite a few years now, but we are not going to default on anything.
re: How would you lower the national debt and help balance the budget if it were up to you?
By PinUpGirlmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member Comments: 25878, member since Tue Jul 16, 2002
On Wed Oct 16, 2013 05:39 PM
New plan! (I've suggested a similar thing for raising money for the Humane Society using Michael Vick).

Have a set payment level and for that amount you can punch the member of Congress of your choice in the face. For the next level, you can punch a member of Congress of your choice in the balls. Eventually you bring out the high powered firearms and methods used in quail hunting, for the right price. All of that money goes back to pay for improvements to the country. And then there would be a lot of job openings in Congress.

That would solve the problem pretty quickly, methinks.
re: How would you lower the national debt and help balance the budget if it were up to you?
By Dancing_EMTmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member Comments: 3466, member since Wed Dec 08, 2004
On Wed Oct 16, 2013 07:09 PM
Reform welfare. If you can't feed 'em, don't breed 'em. If you already have kids and you genuinely need help, ok fine. But if you pop out any more while on assistance you will not get extra food, medical care, etc. I should not have to do your baby daddy's job. (As in support your kids)

PROVE you are actively trying to find a job.

Drug tests for ANY type of assistance, if I need to take one to get/keep a job, you should have to take one to get my tax dollars to buy food. If you can afford weed, acid, crack, etc. you can afford to feed your kids.

Term limits for congress and what not. The same idiots keep getting voted in, diapers, like politicians need to be changed often.

TL;DR version: Make people's irresponsible actions have consequences.
re: How would you lower the national debt and help balance the budget if it were up to you?
By lux Comments: 1178, member since Mon Jun 02, 2008
On Wed Oct 16, 2013 07:19 PM
Dancing_EMT wrote:

Reform welfare. If you can't feed 'em, don't breed 'em. If you already have kids and you genuinely need help, ok fine. But if you pop out any more while on assistance you will not get extra food, medical care, etc. I should not have to do your baby daddy's job. (As in support your kids


Out of interest, under your reforms, what would happen to these children born to already wellfare-reliant parents who won't receive extra income? Even if the parent doesn't deserve assistance, what happens to the child who has no control over the circumstances they've been born into?
re: How would you lower the national debt and help balance the budget if it were up to you?
By Dancing_EMTmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member Comments: 3466, member since Wed Dec 08, 2004
On Wed Oct 16, 2013 07:26 PM
Edited by Dancing_EMT (115664) on 2013-10-16 19:29:28
lux wrote:

Dancing_EMT wrote:

Reform welfare. If you can't feed 'em, don't breed 'em. If you already have kids and you genuinely need help, ok fine. But if you pop out any more while on assistance you will not get extra food, medical care, etc. I should not have to do your baby daddy's job. (As in support your kids


Out of interest, under your reforms, what would happen to these children born to already wellfare-reliant parents who won't receive extra income? Even if the parent doesn't deserve assistance, what happens to the child who has no control over the circumstances they've been born into?


They'll either find a way to make it work or learn how to use either self control or birth control. Call me heartless if you want, I really don't care. I'm tired of seeing the lady in line with her LoneStar card with 3-4 screaming kids and she's pregnant again and they eat better than my husband and I do. If they can't feed their kids, they'll be given to someone who can.

Edit: I also think welfare and what not should be in the hands of churches. Jesus said to help the poor, make churches put their money where their mouth is.

I'd also put restrictions on what you can buy with SNAP. You want chips, soda, candy, etc? Buy them on your own dime. WIC has nutritional guidelines, I'm fully in favor of making SNAP like WIC. Food has to meet certain criteria for it to be covered.
re: How would you lower the national debt and help balance the budget if it were up to you?
By Gavrilushka Comments: 872, member since Wed Jul 11, 2012
On Wed Oct 16, 2013 08:04 PM
Dancing_EMT wrote:

If you can afford weed, acid, crack, etc. you can afford to feed your kids.


While I do agree with you, there is a problem here. I used to be quite hostile towards people who do drugs until I stepped foot into a rehab centre (I was there for anorexia recovery). These people cannot actually function without the drug. They stopped taking the drug because they wanted to, they only took it because they had to - their body would essentially work against them with very painful withdrawal symptoms. It's not the same as craving a cigarette it's just about torturous - one of my friends at the centre described it as feeling like she is asphyxiating all the time and she doesn't feel good on acid anymore, she just wants it so she can stop having these feelings of asphyxiation.

It's no wonder we tell everyone that drugs are bad because the intensity of these withdrawal symptoms which end up making people as dependent on the drug as we are on oxygen will always destroy families and livelihoods. They probably really love their children, but this gets in their way. I think, if we were to talk about people who use welfare money for drugs (which I do believe does happen) we have to consider that some of them may have been addicted before having a child and abortions were not available to them (granted if they wanted one/were forced not to have one) and also consider that the problem isn't spending welfare money on drugs, but getting these people on the drugs in the first place. We'd need - better unstigmatised rehab centres, better education of drugs and drug abuse and develop a system for the children of drug addicted parents so that they won't suffer the consequences of their parent's actions.

I guess restricting what welfare money can buy would be one thing, but that would just lead to drug addicted parents finding other ways to get drugs. Common ways are trading of their children and illegal prostitution.

With that said - legalising prostitution would bring massive revenue to the states. I'm really not sure if there would be a good welfare system for drug addicted parents that would not harm the children. Unless you put all the children in orphanages, but that would lead to ethical issues on its own.
re: How would you lower the national debt and help balance the budget if it were up to you?
By lux Comments: 1178, member since Mon Jun 02, 2008
On Wed Oct 16, 2013 09:20 PM
Dancing_EMT wrote:

They'll either find a way to make it work or learn how to use either self control or birth control.


Ah, I think you misunderstood me. I'm wondering what would happen to the child , since an infant is incapable of "finding a way" or causing their parents to use birth control (either to prevent the birth of further siblings, or of course to retroactively prevent their own conception).

What happens to this infant if their parents don't "make it work"? Do they become a ward of the state? The responsibility of the church- if so, which church? What if the family is not religious? And how would I, as an atheist, ensure that similarly vulnerable children are being taken care of, assuming this is the domain of the church?
re: How would you lower the national debt and help balance the budget if it were up to you? (karma: 1)
By kandykanePremium member Comments: 16415, member since Mon May 01, 2006
On Wed Oct 16, 2013 10:46 PM
There is far more money spent on our military budget than there is spent on welfare. It really angers me when people suggest cutting these programs. While it may make sense to say "use birth control or self control" in what universe does that help the children who are already HERE? Who go to bed hungry? They exist in this nation of plenty. Punishing the parents punishes the KIDS. That drug testing plan to "save" on welfare money will actually cost more money to implement than it will save.

www.cbpp.org . . .

kk~

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