Numbers That Add Up to Trouble

The notion that the Gramm-Rudman Amendment, without modifications or a tax increase, can magically make the deficit disappear collapses as soon as one studies the numbers involved. With annual spending now at almost $1 trillion, the act's purpose is to reduce to zero an annual deficit currently running at some $200 billion. Yet about 70% of this year's budget, and at least half in future years, could be protected from automatic cuts. That means the increasingly painful slashes will have to come from just part of the pie, and more than half of that portion goes to the military. The ax...

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