Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Long Term Deficit (not a crisis !!!) ideas

There is no deficit crisis right now according to economists like Paul Krugman, Brad DeLong, and Dean Baker and others.  Right now, we are already in an economic crisis, but it is an economic recession, the worst since the Great Depression so far, and that it the opposite of a Deficit Crisis.  The deficit crisis is right wing hype.

However, the US does have a long term deficit problem.  I would propose measures like this:

#1 Single Payer (according to Brad DeLong, rising
     heathcare is 98% of the long term problem)

#2 End wars, close overseas bases, stop funding useless weapons like star wars.

#3 Allow the Bush tax cuts to expire, either en toto or just on Americans who make over $250,000 as Obama promised.

#4 Tax capital gains as income, eliminate the hedge fund manager loophole.  Institute a financial transactions tax (praised by Keynes for helping stability).

#5 Eliminate corporate tax loopholes, tax breaks for big oil and coal; tax breaks for outsourcing.

#6 Tax CO2 emissions.  (If fully refunded, this might be just neutral or positive through increasing GDP.)

#7 Eliminate subsidies subsidies for corn ethanol, a process which produces about the same CO2 emissions as direct use of fossil fuels.

#8 Fully restore the estate tax with exemption at 45%, add new billionaire estate tax at 65%.

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