Tuesday, August 23, 2011

My Dinner with Tyler

Sure, I'm riffing on the movie title.

But this was very, very interesting: dinner at Chutny, breaking the Ramadan fast, along with Chug R.

And, while I can't speak for Tyler formally, I can quote from MR: "There are plenty of good arguments that taxes have to go up." We agree on that, completely. At dinner, we came to the conclusion that the actual solutions we expect, which do NOT involve taxes going up in a sensible way, are probably worse than other solutions we can imagine.

If you are not going to cut spending, you have to raise taxes, because DAFT. And nobody wants to cut spending.

The point is this: the BEST case for something that is actually feasible looks like this:

1. Cut military spending
2. Solve Soc Sec with combination of means testing and delayed retirement age
3. Health care reform, with most preferable outcome being a Singapore-light system. Even a German style system, which preserves considerable competition, and controls cost.
4. Medicare reform. But #3 solves #4, automatically. We can't solve Medicare, we have to finesse it.
5. Mild inflation, 5%, for 5 years
6. Tax increases and cutting deductions

Do I favor the above policies? I do not, in an unconstrained world where I was dictator.* Do I think that the actual package of stupid s**t we are going to pick is substantially WORSE than the above package? I do.

*Non-doughy samosas for everyone!


Dave said...

Hey, I want to cut spending!

Anonymous said...

This is a very good analysis, and I am inclined to think that that package is the best outcome for all parties. I do wish to hear more about these non-doughy samosas you speak of...