The Comeback America Initiative has developed a “Fiscal IQ Quiz” which anyone can take to test their understanding of our federal government’s serious financial condition and bleak fiscal outlook. The quiz includes two types of questions: ones that test knowledge of fiscal facts (Fiscal Knowledge), and others that will gauge whether the test taker’s views about potential solutions are realistic as compared to those of a number of objective federal budget experts (Fiscal Wisdom).
After completing the five minute and 30-question quiz, participants are provided two scores (Fiscal Knowledge and Fiscal Wisdom) as well as an overall IQ score, which is the average of the Knowledge and Wisdom scores. For any questions they answer incorrectly, the test taker will receive information explaining why they were wrong. The Fiscal IQ Quiz can be found here.
Please complete the quiz and then get colleagues, friends and family to do the same. Together, we can fix our country’s finances and keep America great.
David Brooks writes today in the New York Times that Americans are not “shrinking back” in light of the current dire economic circumstances, but rather, “Quietly but decisively, Americans are trying to restore the moral norms that undergird our economic system.” One of these norms is a restoration of personal fiscal reasonability, “The first norm is that you shouldn’t spend more than you take in. After an explosion of debt over the past few decades, Americans are now reacting strongly against the debt culture. According to the latest Allstate/National Journal Heartland Monitor poll, three-quarters of Americans said they’d be better off if they carried no debt whatsoever. Not long ago, most people saw debt as a useful tool for consumption and enjoyment. Now they see it as a seduction and an obstacle.” If this is the case, policymakers at the federal, state, and local level should follow the lead of the American public and restore the principles of fiscal responsibility to their management of our public finances.
The Great Restoration
Dave Walker finished in second place in the Politico primary. From these results, it is clear to see that the time is now for fiscal responsibility and common sense solutions. Thanks to those who voted in this poll.
See the results here.
If you want to send a signal for fiscal responsibility and the need for common sense solutions to America’s problems, vote for Dave Walker any time before noon Wednesday. Also, watch the No Labels short Dave Walker campaign video here.
When voting, please take notice of the “submit to twitter” option. If you do not use Twitter, be sure to uncheck this option.
Of our federal entitlement programs, Medicare poses the biggest threat to our fiscal future. Thus, reforming our health system is of the utmost importance in order to put our country’s finances on a sustainable path. This article today in the New York Times touches on one of many problems in the health system, i.e. the potential that excessive overutilization of health services is contributing to increased cost. The article highlights a recent study that comprehensively examined Medicare beneficiaries in their last year of life, and found that there are higher than expected rates of surgery. If true, addressing issues such as these may can have a big impact on costs, but are also are the most controversial. A fact based, honest discussion is the only way to ever engage the public in a way that’s brings about meaningful reform.
Surgery Rate Late in Life Surprises Researchers
Although the country’s current political discourse is as depressing as ever, there is one thing that Democrats, Republicans, the business community, and all citizens can agree upon. This is the need for a comprehensive overhaul of our nation’s tax system. Unfortunately, it is something that has been agreed upon for years with no action taken. The following article sheds light on why the prospects for reform today are shaky despite broad agreement on the need to do so.
US tax system: A return to reform
Inflation cannot solve the country’s fiscal woes. Higher inflation rates reduce the purchasing power of all Americans and inflationary pressures tend to have a disproportionately adverse impact on those Americans who are financially less well off. Additional inflation can serve to lessen the burden associated with the nation’s current outstanding debt, but the real challenge to our future is represented by the tens of trillions of dollars in unfunded Medicare, Social Security and other mandatory obligations. These unfunded obligations will grow faster than inflation, and even faster than our economy when it is back at full strength.
By Matthew P. Kahn