Mix'd Bag

Budget Whoa’s | 6 Ways to Find a Balance

13 Comments 10 | April | 2011

As a government employee who was on the cusp of a potential shutdown, I spent some time the past few days thinking about the budget conundrum, marveling at the fact that a relative few members of our population remained embattled over government spending up to a point where they threatened the livelihood of a much greater percentage of Americans.  Even worse, personal agendas interfered with the resolution process, which made me want to cater the lunches for these discussions and serve nothing but knuckle sandwiches.

I’m not claiming that there are obvious choices for items to slash out of the budget, nor do I want to be a congressman, but for the love of Jeff, we voted for you a**holes on the promise that you’d make some tough decisions.  After dragging this budget stalemate to the brink I hope that in future negotiations Congressmen will sack up.  Ladies of Congress, please do the equivalent.

As a member of this democracy, I can (supposedly) make a difference so I thought I would offer up a few suggestions of my own.  They won’t make it into this year’s budget, but something tells me next year will bring more of the same, so Barack might want to keep a few of these in his back pocket.  No need for a public thank you, Mr. President, just send me a signed presidential pardon with the “offense” section left blank.

With that, here are six ways to balance the budget:

1.       Carry out an extremely hostile takeover of the NFL.


Claiming it as a maneuver critical to ensuring national solvency, Barack and Co. will simply bitch slap NFL Commissioner, Roger Goodell, team owners, and the overpaid crybaby players’ association, snatching up the league while chastising them for failing to come to a Collective Bargaining Agreement.  This magnificent, yet hyper-hypocritical move will leave the government in a position to reap the over $7 billion in yearly profits.

Next, add government sin taxes on beer, hot dogs and cheese whiz at all stadiums.  Given the already astronomical beer prices this may seem like a pour poor business decision, but it is a fact that fans of the NFL cannot not drink at games.  It helps them cope with the fact that they overpaid for tickets, can’t tell what is going on on the field, have no access to instant replay, and wish they were watching the game at home.  Depending on the level of success, there are a few other “markets” out there.  Watch out Major League Baseball…you’re next.

2.       Shut down all DMVs.


Instead of letting this self-fulfilling hellhole continue to swallow up happiness and optimism faster than Simon Cowell, let’s transfer all of the services to an online platform.  No more camping out in the parking lot the night before.  No more standing around in a defeated posture, sedately gazing at the “Now Serving” monitor.  No more hate-filled interactions with valium-soaked DMV workers where rabid drivers suppress the rage of a thousand middle children when directed to yet another line.  Instead, all of the DMV’s functionality could be found on the internet, at the touch of a button.

Q. But what about people who don’t have computers?
A. Think about the people who don’t have computers.  Children, really really old people, hermits, and rednecks.  Do you really want them driving?

After the switchover has been completed we can systematically euthanize the DMV workers and put them out of their misery…or give them jobs at the post office.  Their choice.  Ha ha!  We’re gonna need more pills!

*I realize that DMVs are run by state governments, but it’s too good an idea to keep a secret.  Plus, it’s not like state budgets are looking any better.

3.       Sell Montana to Canada.


...more like Double Rainbow Country!!

Aside from playing host to an overabundance of one-light towns and a “bat-out-of-hell” freeway system, Big Sky Country ain’t doin much for America other than providing a road to Sturgis.  Hell, donate it to Canada.  It’s pretty big and pretty boring…should fit in nicely.  Even as the 4th largest US state (147,042 sq mi), it’d be Saskatchewan’s bitch (227,100 sq mi….or for the (now angry) Canadians reading that’s 588,276 square kilometres).

Yes, we would be losing Glacier National Park, but think of it as an act of preservation.  Give America fifty years and you’ll have oil tycoons choking out Great Blue Herons because they’re fucking up the drill rigs.  Canadians on the other hand will actually take care of the land, befriend the animals and teach them French.

4.       Relocate costly Medicare patients to Montana.


You say, “But I thought we were going to give Montana to our “Neighbors to the North.”  Duh…but right before they take over their newest province, we will launch a nationwide covert operation.  Promising to take them to see the Antiques Roadshow or to the prune factory, we lure Medicare recipients into a fleet of U-hauls and hijacked retirement home shuttles.  Then just before the money exchanges hands we dump these financial vampires in the middle of the state, surrounded by 4.7 million pine-scented air fresheners.  By the time the Canucks catch a whiff of their newest citizens we’ll be like, “Too late, yo!  All sales are final!!”  Soon after, Canada’s free healthcare system will be overrun by needy, expecting, drug-addled hands, griping about missing pillboxes and Murder, She Wrote marathons.  Meanwhile, we take our newfound $480 billion in annual savings and head to Vegas to rent the Presidential Suite for the rest of the century.

5.       Relieve the overcrowded prison system.


I know what you’re thinking…just dump them in Montana, too!  Right?! Actually, no.  A large percentage of prisoners are actually smart and capable people, they’re just in prison for dumb reasons.   (Note:  there are plenty of people that deserve to be in prison so this isn’t an across-the-board solution)  Currently, we continue to cram people into cells and then pay approximately $45,000 per year to house each prisoner instead of admitting that we have some ridiculous laws on the books.  To solve this part of the equation I propose we have a MASSIVE church service at Dallas Cowboys stadium and broadcast it nationwide on all the major networks.  With the religious right fixated on their duties to The Lord Jesus Christ, we can release these people (with ankle bracelets) with less ripple effect than Oprah jumping off the high dive.

Next consider inmates on death row and the fact that the average time spent on “the row” is 10 years!  According to the Death Penalty Information Center (remember to bookmark that site and stop by with the kids the next time you’re in D.C.), there were 46 executions in 2010.  Now I can’t quote the going rate for a hitman, but I would guess that that it’s less than the $450k required to keep a dead man walking for 10 years.  Plus I’d bet we could get a group discount.  Ooh, too dark for you?

6.       “Restructure” the Social Security System.

SS card

I’ve got one number for you:  $615 billion paid out in 2008.  Ok, that is actually two numbers and it would have been a shit-ton of digits and commas if I wrote it out.  Even in its abbreviated form, I find that figure staggering.  If you want me to pay for someone’s retirement they’d better be blood relatives.  I don’t want my dollars going to a cracked-out bingo hag in Atlantic City who can’t get through the day without a 6-pack of Bartles & James and a seat near the “cage.”  I see how someone might misread that sentence and think I’m just a selfish, cold-hearted…Republican, but the truth is that I just think there is a better way to take care of our elders.  See Idea #4 above…

Or here’s another thought.  We can halve that payment by pitting potential retirees against each other in a winner-take-all format.  Contestants will be paired based on age, gender, height, weight, and dollars contributed to Social Security.  Once selected, contestants will compete for the best time in a Double Dare style obstacle course.  The winner gets his Social Security payout and the loser gets to go back to work.  Obviously this will be televised, on a game show titled, What The Fuck Just Happened To My Money?! A show of this nature will undoubtedly score huge numbers of sadistic fans and concerned relatives alike.  The immense viewership will lead to pricey advertising slots likely to be bought up by E-Trade, Charles Schwab and other money management firms.  Double bonus for the government, seeing as how the “prize money” is already supplied, and thus all advertising revenue is pure profit, baby!

What?  Is that also too far?  Is the idea of a live studio audience chanting in unison, “WHAT THE FUCK HAPPENED TO YOUR MONEY” while pointing and laughing at an emotionally broken human not hilarious?  Maybe YOU’d like to move to Montana.


By far the most interesting information I discovered while researching this post is the chart below.  I strongly urge you to take a quick look a see what our government spends its money on and in what quantity  (Hint:  Health Care, Social Security and Interest on the National Debt dwarf all other government spending!).  For this chart, plus additional budget information, visit http://www.federalbudget.com/

Fed Budget

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