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Author Archive | Brian Riedl

How Washington will spend your taxes in 2006

As the April 15 tax deadline edges closer, taxpayers frantically completing their 1040s may be wondering just what their hard-earned federal tax dollars pay for, anyway. Washington will spend $23,760 per household in 2006 — the highest inflation-adjusted total since World War II, and $6,500 more than in 2001. The federal government will collect $20,044 […]

Corporate Welfare at It’s Worst: Advanced Technology Program

Members of Congress will soon return home for August recess. While there, many will express outrage over the 33 percent increase in government spending since 2001, and the $400 billion budget deficit. They will offer vague pledges to rein in government. Taxpayers have heard it all before. Those who want to see how serious lawmakers […]

How Your Government Wastes Your Money

This year, Washington will spend an eye-popping $22,039 per household. That is the highest inflation-adjusted total since World War II, and $5,000 per household more than Washington spent just four years ago. With difficult decisions ahead, government waste should be the easiest place to begin bringing spending under control. Amazingly, Congress hasn’t undertaken any serious […]

How Washington Will Spend Your Taxes In 2005

The April 15 tax deadline provides taxpayers the opportunity to examine how their elected officials will spend their hard-earned tax dollars. Washington will spend $22,039 per household in 2005 — the highest inflation-adjusted total since World War II, and $4,000 more than in 2001. The federal government will collect $18,248 per household in taxes. The […]

Budget Deficits Mean It’s Time to Cut Government Spending

The Congressional Budget Office’s latest budget projections should serve as a wake-up call to fiscal conservatives in Congress and the White House. Unless they restrain spending, they’ll see budget deficits jeopardize the tax-relief agenda and imperil much of the hard-fought progress achieved over the past three years. The CBO projects deficits of $401 billion in […]

National Security Versus Pork

Should our tax dollars fund our troops fighting in Iraq, or the Smithsonian’s national worm collection? If it’s business as usual up at the Capitol, then this is the type of question Congress will grapple with in the coming weeks. And if history is our guide, the outcome is too close to call. On March […]

Cutting Government Waste: A “Painful Sacrifice”?

There they go again: Rep. Charles Rangel, D-N.Y., calls it “immoral.” Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle says it would be a “painful sacrifice.” The war in Iraq? Try the budget recently passed by the House Budget Committee, which seeks to increase government spending by only 4 percent next year. This is slightly slower growth than […]

End Welfare for Corporations

The 1996 welfare reforms comprised the boldest social policy reform over the last 60 years. Millions of people moved off the government dole and achieved self-sufficiency. Unfortunately, those reforms excluded a rather large segment of society that still considers itself too vulnerable to survive on its own, and stubbornly resists subjecting itself to sink-or-swim capitalism: […]

States: Don’t Look to Washington to Bailout Your Budget Mismanagement

State capitols are abuzz with nervous activity. In 31 states, legislatures are working to close a combined budget gap of $17.5 billion. What created these crises? Overspending by politicians. Even after two years of what many call “the worst fiscal crisis since World War II,” state tax revenues are up almost 40 percent over 1990 […]

“Do the Opposite” on Taxes

Fans of the TV show “Seinfeld” will remember an episode in which perpetual loser George Costanza announces a major shift in attitude: From that point on, he will simply “do the opposite” of whatever he would normally do in any given situation. This turns into an immediate success formula. Nothing goes wrong — until he […]