US needs plan to tame debt soon, experts say

WASHINGTON, Dec 14 (Reuters) - The U.S. government must craft a plan next year to get its ballooning debt under control or face possible panic in financial markets, a bipartisan panel of budget experts said in a report on Monday.

Though the government should hold off on immediate tax hikes and spending cuts to avoid harming the fragile economic recovery, it will need to make such painful changes by 2012 in order to keep debt at a manageable 60 percent of GDP by 2018, according to the Peterson-Pew Commission on Budget Reform.

Without action, investors could lose confidence in the United States, driving down the dollar and forcing up interest rates, said the former lawmakers and budget officials who crafted the report. That could cause a sharp decrease in the country's standard of living.

"We will be less free if we don't tackle this," said Jim Nussle, a Republican member of the commission who earlier served as a White House budget director and chairman of the budget committee in the U.S. House of Representatives.

The 34-member commission published its report as Congress was poised to raise the debt limit from its current $12.1 trillion level to allow the government to continue operating.

The national debt has more than doubled since 2001, thanks to the worst recession since the 1930s, several rounds of tax cuts and wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

A looming wave of retirements over the coming decade is expected to make the situation worse.

The national debt currently accounts for 53 percent of GDP, up from 41 percent a year ago. That's likely to rise to 85 percent of GDP by 2018 and 200 percent of GDP by 2038 unless dramatic changes are made, the commission said.

The commission did not issue specific prescriptions but said tax increases and spending cuts would probably be needed.

It said Congress and the Obama administration should set specific targets each year, with automatic spending reductions and tax increases kicking in if they are not reached.

The Democratic-controlled Congress is unlikely to fix the problem on its own given the highly partisan atmosphere, commission members said.

"You've got to have a few Republican votes, and there have been none. And there has been no possible way in the current political system yet to find that sensible center," said former Democratic Representative Charlie Stenholm.

The commission backed the creation of an outside commission, similar to one used to close miliary bases, to create the necessary political cover.

Such a proposal is included in a crush of year-end legislation that could clear Congress this week but it is opposed by many key Democrats.

The United States must act to ensure that it does not join Dubai, Greece, and other countries that risk losing the confidence of investors, the commission said.

"It's imperative that we take action before the financial markets force us to," said Douglas Holtz-Eakin, a former Congressional Budget Office director who advised Republican John McCain's presidential campaign last year.

Copyright 2009 Reuters. click for restrictions

"All rich countries should move to 100% synthetic beef. You can get used to the taste difference," said holy anointed billionaire Bill Gates. Green activism has been around for decades. But what used to be wacky has now worked its way into the world's power structure. You must believe the science. You cannot question the science.

The Texas power failure provided America with a disturbing and deadly preview of the Great Reset. But Bill Gates, AOC, and other Democrats say this only proves we need to enforce MORE green policies.

On his Wednesday night special this week, Glenn Beck reveals how deep the Great Reset tentacles reach into government and business to strangle freedom and their efforts to control every aspect of your private life.

Watch the full episode below:

Want more from Glenn Beck?

To enjoy more of Glenn's masterful storytelling, thought-provoking analysis and uncanny ability to make sense of the chaos, subscribe to BlazeTV — the largest multi-platform network of voices who love America, defend the Constitution and live the American dream.

Why are we letting criminals out of prison while putting pastors in? Pastor James Coates of Canada's GraceLife Church was recently fined, arrested, and put in maximum security prison for violating lockdown rules.

Rebel News founder Ezra Levant joined Glenn Beck on "Glenn TV" to discuss the story. Ezra said he's noticed a trend of government officials "picking on" Christians as "lockdownism" becomes almost a new kind of religion, and warned this might be just the start of more persecution to come.

Watch the video below to catch more of the conversation:


Want more from Glenn Beck?

To enjoy more of Glenn's masterful storytelling, thought-provoking analysis and uncanny ability to make sense of the chaos, subscribe to BlazeTV — the largest multi-platform network of voices who love America, defend the Constitution and live the American dream.

As politicians and the mainstream media continue to insist that America is divided and at each other's throats, Dr. Ben Carson has a different message. He joined the "Glenn Beck Podcast" this week to discuss his time in the Trump administration and how we move forward and heal America. Overall, he says, we must realize "Americans are NOT each other's enemies."

Watch the video clip below to catch more of the conversation, or enjoy the full interview with Dr. Ben Carson here.

Want more from Glenn Beck?

To enjoy more of Glenn's masterful storytelling, thought-provoking analysis and uncanny ability to make sense of the chaos, subscribe to BlazeTV — the largest multi-platform network of voices who love America, defend the Constitution and live the American dream.

Does parody even exist anymore? Filmmaker Ami Horowitz recently went to Yale University to ask students to sign his 'petition' to repeal the U.S. Constitution — and they actually did it!

Ami joined Glenn Beck on "Glenn TV" recently to describe how this wasn't just a few people — this was 65 percent of those he asked, and NO ONE seemed to think it was a bad idea.

Watch the video below to hear more from Ami Horowitz:

Want more from Glenn Beck?

To enjoy more of Glenn's masterful storytelling, thought-provoking analysis and uncanny ability to make sense of the chaos, subscribe to BlazeTV — the largest multi-platform network of voices who love America, defend the Constitution and live the American dream.