To tackle the national debt, we must lower the federal government spending to somewhere between 15% to 17% of the GDP. To accomplish this, we must consider:
1) Reduce spending off the top in every governmental agency by 10%, 15%, 20%, and 25% based on performance. Additionally, all non-essential agencies, based upon repeated historical failures to meet minimal objectives, will be phased out. We must apply a SWOT Analysis to the government before the national debt interest multiplies.
2) Discretionary spending MUST have a firm cap. Congress MUST cut all spending programs that were not approved by Congress, but were lumped into the budget in years past. (Point #1 partially addresses the issue of discretionary spending)
3) We must overhaul Social Security while ensuring everyone will receive a return on their governmental investment. Again, the government should explore and implement privatization options for retirement that allow an opt-out from Social Security.
4) We need to reduce entitlements and set benchmarks and timelines for those receiving aid. We cannot continue to allow people to remain on entitlements forever. I'm all for helping people going through difficult times, but when we fail to motivate them with timelines, it encourages generational entitlements.
5) Keep emphasizing affordable American goods and services. We must continue to level the playing field concerning imports and exports.
6) We need to renegotiate NAFTA, not scrap it altogether.
a) Protect our dairy farmers and their goods;
b) Ensure 42% or more of all car parts are made in the US, even if some car manufacturers do not return to do business in the US; and
c) Establish higher tariffs on goods being imported into the US from companies that left the US, to promote US goods and services.
7) Keep interest rates low.
a) Historically, when consumers have more money in their pockets, they tend to spend more. However, we need to do a better job of teaching personal responsibility in spending since over $12 trillion of our national debt is consumer debt.
b) Low interest rates encourage business and farmer investment in equipment and products.
8) Keep taxes low. I'm in favor of reducing individual and corporate taxes even further, with the elimination of deductions and implementation of a gradual flat tax at rates of 5%, 10%, 15%, and 20%. We must conduct a feasibility study, receiving input from both private and corporate sectors to determine into what bracket each pay level will fall.
9) Renegotiating our national debt with our lenders to reduce the interest paid.
Interest payments on the national debt are $315 billion for FY 2018. (Source) Renegotiations must not include an increase in interest paid. Most lenders are willing to accelerate payments to receive their money back, even if it costs them some of the interest in the end.
10) CREATE A 1 PENNY PER DOLLAR NATIONAL SALES CONSUMPTION TAX 100% DEDICATED TO PAYING OFF THE NATIONAL DEBT: While I am NOT for additional taxes, I do understand that we are at an unprecedented time financially and it requires an unprecedented approach to tackling the national debt. Every American bears the responsibility for our national debt, to correct the course of our perpetual financial mismanagement by the federal government. The 1 Penny National Sales Consumption Tax will help pay off the debt, without putting a significant hardship on any one individual.
Provisions for the National Sales Consumption Tax:
1) Based on historical analysis, a 1 Penny National Sales Tax would result in approximately $450 billion in additional income annually. As consumer confidence and spending continues to grow, the amount to be applied toward the debt will only grow.
2) Every penny that comes in MUST be applied to the national debt; NO EXCEPTIONS!
3) The federal government MUST reduce the annual federal budget to match each dollar from the previous year that comes in so we can double up to pay off our debt. With the $450 billion projection and matching provision, it will still take approximately 22 years to pay off the national debt.