Senator Pryor asks for Spending Cut Suggestions! Here are a few!(Part 71)

Senator Mark Pryor wants our ideas on how to cut federal spending. Take a look at this video clip below:

Senator Pryor has asked us to send our ideas to him at cutspending@pryor.senate.gov and I have done so in the past and will continue to do so in the future.

On May 11, 2011,  I emailed to this above address and I got this email back from Senator Pryor’s office:

Please note, this is not a monitored email account. Due to the sheer volume of correspondence I receive, I ask that constituents please contact me via my website with any responses or additional concerns. If you would like a specific reply to your message, please visit http://pryor.senate.gov/contact. This system ensures that I will continue to keep Arkansas First by allowing me to better organize the thousands of emails I get from Arkansans each week and ensuring that I have all the information I need to respond to your particular communication in timely manner.  I appreciate you writing. I always welcome your input and suggestions. Please do not hesitate to contact me on any issue of concern to you in the future.

Here are a few more I just emailed to him myself:

Belt-Tightening Budgets Versus Priority Budgets
Following several “expansion budgets,” President Bush has moved the debate in a more responsible direction by proposing a “belt-tightening budget” that asks most agencies to accept a near-freeze in discretionary spending. But would most families trying to cut costs simply freeze each expenditure equally? Or would they fully fund priorities like food, the mortgage payment, and insurance while completely eliminating unaffordable luxuries such as vacations and entertainment?
Most families would choose this “priority budget” over a “belt-tightening budget,” and so should government. A priority budget would ask lawmakers to fully fund a few top priorities, such as defense, homeland security, and a few domestic programs, and then terminate such unaffordable luxuries as the approximately $60 billion in corporate welfare spending; the $20 billion pork-project budget; $100 billion (at least) in waste, fraud, and abuse; and hundreds of ineffective, outdated, and unnecessary programs.
Belt-tightening budgets are certainly preferable to the expansion budgets of the past few years. However, reducing a program’s funding without correspondingly adjusting its structure, goals, and duties can lead to ineffective government. Better a few vital activities performed well than a multitude of activities performed poorly.
President Bush proposes terminating 65 programs at a savings of $4.9 billion. (See Appendix 1.) Although a step in the right direction, these low-priority terminations represent only 0.2 percent of all federal spending. By contrast, a priority budget would:
  • Fully fund a limited number of high-priority spending categories, such as defense and homeland security;
  • Terminate entire categories of lower-priority programs, such as corporate welfare;
  • Institute a moratorium on pork projects;
  • Limit non-security spending increases to programs that pass their audits; and
  • Substantially reform programs growing at unsustainable rates, such as Social Security and Medicare.
Time to be Bold
Congress last attempted to enact a priority budget in 1995 and 1996, when the 104th Congress terminated several programs whose irrelevance was proven by how quickly they were forgotten. But Congress then committed several strategic errors, such as overreaching and shutting down the federal government in 1995. After President Bill Clinton deftly exploited these mistakes, budget cutters overreacted to Clinton’s tactics by completely abandoning the mission of smaller government. By 1998, federal spending was growing once again as a paralyzed Congress decided that budget confrontations with the Clinton White House could never be won and should be avoided at all costs.
In 2004, national defense, homeland security, and entitlement challenges make spending reform more important than ever. It is time to step back and think about the role of government, the obligations of the private sector, and the delineation between federal and state responsibilities. For those interested in lean, effective government with low taxes, the following are 10 guidelines for getting spending under control.

Discretionary Spending

Real Discretionary Outlays Have Surged 79% Since 2000

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