Tuesday, April 5, 2011


Our country is coming closer and closer every day to financial crossroads that must eventually be faced.  Two options as to the path we take to move forward have emerged- one that closely resembles the path we are on today (and have followed in the past) and a second that takes a hard turn in a different direction.  There are vastly different opinions on which of these paths is most appropriate for the country going forward. 

Today Paul Ryan, a Republican Congressman of Wisconsin, released details as to his proposed budget which he calls “The Path to Prosperity.”  Ryan obviously falls in the camp that believes we are due for a hard turn.  There are substantial changes proposed in the budget, all aimed at reducing the national debt (as a percentage of our GDP) over the next decade.  Perhaps the most impressive part of the proposal is the inclusion of entitlement program reform, which for political purposes has been a no-no in the past.  Economists have unanimously agreed that any real reform must include changes to entitlement programs (traditionally considered Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid) because of their significant cost as it relates to our total budget. 

Specifically, Ryan’s agenda cuts an estimated $6.2 trillion in spending from the president’s budget over the next ten years.  A big part of Ryan’s message is that fiscal reform and responsibility will put us on a path to someday pass on a “debt-free” country to future generations rather than a financial nightmare.  Who would have thought it would ever be possible to be debt-free!?  This all sounds very attractive although this budget calls for shared sacrifice in the way of spending cuts and revenue “enhancements.”  Neither is politically popular but it would seem a combination of these changes is absolutely necessary to keep our financial future intact as a country.

We can only hope that other leaders will join Ryan in an aggressive agenda designed to keep the U.S. on a track to fiscal prosperity for us all. 

For more details on Ryan’s proposal, visit http://tinyurl.com/3pakv8y.