Bringing the troops home from Afghanistan and Iraq especially, are already on the table and will be part of a "Grand Bargain" if one is reached. In raising the Debt Ceiling and getting our debt and deficit under control. As far as laying off Public Workers who aren't doing a good job and are a waste of Tax Payer money, I'm all for that. But its not that easy, you have to figure out what Public Workers aren't doing a good job and in what agency's and departments. I mean were are talking about a Federal Public Service of around 8M people, in a Federal Budget of 3.7T$ where we borrow 40% of that to fiance the Federal Budget. But another problem would be that some of these employees and probably a lot of them, actually do a good job. Like in the Military, FBI, Justice Department, FDA, the Health Service, State Department and others. If you want to lay off Low Performing Public Workers, I would start in Congress , in both Chambers and in both parties. Then I would work my way to the White House, the President and Vice President could stay. They still have eighteen months left on their terms and then I would work my way to the Supreme Court. Just saying your going to lay off Federal Workers, is way too broad, you should be more specific and put more thought in to it. And if your talking more about laying off more departments and agency's, then you should also be more specific and lay out exactly where. I don't believe the old Ronald Reagan "Cut and Run or Slash and Burn" strategy is the most appropriate here.
A lot of times you can make government less expensive and more efficient by simply reforming it. For example do we really need hundreds or thousands of Federal Programs Public Welfare programs. For the Less Fortunate and others, I and Sen. Tom Coburn who at times I've agreed with on these issues. Even though he's a Conservative Republican and I'm a Liberal Democrat but Sen Coburn is a good conservative, a Classical Cosnervative. Believe we simply don't need all of these programs and can no longer afford them. And we should look at Block Granting, sorry thats a Washington term meaning turing them over to State and Local Governments and giving them money to run them. To the State and Local Governments, programs like Welfare Insurance, Unemployment Insurance, Food Stamps, Medicaid, Public Housing, Medicare, Children's Health Insurance. CHI is funded with Tobacco Tax by the way, hoping people would smoke and hurt their lungs to pay for Health Insurance which is good for people, but thats a different story. This would be a better approach in my view instead of the Federal Government trying to manage all of the Social Insurance programs all over the country and having them all report to Washington. My problem with it, is you would end one headache and start another. Because then the Federal Government would be left to regulate State and Local Governments to see how they are spending Federal Taxes.
What I would like to do is see all of these Social Insurance programs reformed in a way, including Social Security, Unemployment Insurance, Medicare and Medicaid. Where they would become Non Profit Independent Services, not fully privatized at least not in the short term. But they would have their own Management and Board of Directors that they would select. With their own financing up front and then their clients would pay them back once they become Self Sufficient. Like with Unemployment Insurance, Welfare Insurance, Food Assistance to use as examples. Social Security and Medicare are already essentially Fully Funded but both need to be reformed. These other programs would need their own Revenue Sources but this can all be done. This type of reforms would save Tax Payers and the Federal Government, State and Local Governments, around a trillion dollars a year in appropriations. Because they would no longer have to collect the taxes to fund them and to manage them. And this is just the savings in our Social Insurance programs and I haven't gotten to the Defense Budget yet. And the Federal Government can concentrate on what at least its done well historically, National Security, Foreign Service, Health Service, Law Enforcement and Regulating. Instead of trying to be everything to everybody.
The "Cut and Run Slash and Burn" strategy has proven not to work in the past, for one thing it just angers a lot of Special Interest Groups. And another there are people who actually depend on these programs to help them to survive and you leave them with nothing. But what we can do is reform them in a way to make them more Cost Effective and efficient.