Marc Thiessen of the Washington Post Writers Group wrote a mouthful in his column published on Oct. 19, "Warren a threat to the economy." He said that Manhattan Institute budget expert Brian Riedl had calculated the cost of Sen. Elizabeth Warren's proposed programs to be $38 trillion to $48 trillion over a 10-year period.
That's almost $4 trillion to $5 trillion per year. Our current federal budget is approximately $5 trillion per year, and $1 trillion of that is deficit spending. So her proposals will double the federal budget and lead to either a $6 trillion per year deficit or tax increases of 125%. But Warren will not talk about tax increases. This is the person who is leading the pack of Democratic presidential candidates.
Warren's "Medicare for all" program alone will cost $3 trillion to $4 trillion per year. How are we going to pay for this?
The combined cost of Warren's additional proposals over the same 10-year period is $8 trillion. Where will the money come from? In my Oct. 22 letter, I stated that my Medicare Part B premium is $110 per month. On Oct. 21, I received a letter from the Social Security Administration informing me that my new Part B premium in $135 per month. That's a 23% increase.
Sen. Bernie Sanders has proposed a $16 trillion environmental and infrastructure upgrade program. His idea of financing his program with 20 million new jobs is not even mathematically possible. Figuring this is simple arithmetic.
There is merit to all of the proposed programs. The trouble is that we have already dug such a deep hole that it might not even be possible any more to extricate ourselves. $20 trillion is a lot of money. Under these new programs, the budget will eat 70% of our gross domestic product. Come on, man! What are the American people supposed to live on?
A few weeks ago, one writer, I believe with The Heritage Foundation, proposed that the government refinance our debt now that interest rates are low. This would reduce the interest payments so that they would not be as large a portion of the federal budget.
Two things are wrong with this proposal. Who is going to sell back bonds that are paying 7% in order to buy government instruments that are paying 2%? I have many thousands of dollars of EE bonds that I purchased nearly 30 years ago. I will not turn them in until I must when they have reached the 40-year limit.
The second thing is our government's spending philosophy. If I were dumb enough to trade in my government securities, the government would not use the additional revenue to pay on the national debt. The government would spend the money on new programs, and we would end up in the same fix we are currently in.
Wake up America. If we continue on our present course, there will be no recovery. We will become bankrupt, and all these programs will come to an abrupt end.
LAWRENCE D. WEBER