It's time to cut departments that ARE NOT NEEDED:
The Department of Agriculture
administers large farm subsidy programs and runs the food stamp and school lunch programs.
The department will spend about $151 billion in 2012, or about $1,200 for every U.S. household. It employs 93,000 workers and operates more than 240 subsidy programs.
The Department of Defense
oversees a vast array of people and assets at home and abroad, but we could improve security and reduce costs with a more restrained military strategy.
The department will spend about $668 billion in fiscal 2012, or $5,800 for every U.S. household.
The Department of Commerce
subsidizes businesses, restricts foreign trade, and oversees the Census Bureau and Patent Office.
The department will spend about $11 billion in 2012, or about $100 for every U.S. household. It employs 41,000 workers and operates more than 97 subsidy programs.
The Department of Education
operates a range of subsidy programs for elementary and secondary schools. That aid is matched by rising federal regulatory control over the schools, but federal intervention has not generally lifted academic achievement. The department also provides subsidies to higher education through student loans and grants. Unfortunately, that aid has fueled inflation in college tuition and is subject to widespread abuse.
The department will spend about $98 billion in 2012, or $830 for every U.S. household. It employs 4,300 workers and operates 153 different subsidy programs.
The Department of Energy
oversees nuclear weapons sites and subsidizes conventional and alternative fuels. The department has a history of fiscal and environmental mismanagement. Also, misguided energy regulations have caused large loses to consumers and the economy over the decades.
The department will spend about $39 billion in 2012, or about $330 for every U.S. household. It employs about 17,000 workers directly and oversees 100,000 contract workers at 21 national laboratories and other facilities across the nation. The department operates 37 different subsidy programs.
The Department of Health and Human Services
administers the huge and fast-growing Medicare and Medicaid programs. These programs fuel rising health costs, distort health markets, and are plagued by waste and fraud. The department also runs an array of other expensive subsidy programs, including Head Start, TANF, and LIHEAP. Growth in HHS spending is creating a federal financial crisis, and the 2010 health care law sadly makes the situation worse.
The department will spend $872 billion in 2012, or about $7,400 for every U.S. household. It employs 70,000 workers and runs 445 subsidy programs.
The Department of Housing and Urban Development
engages in a range of housing and community activities that used to be the responsibility of local governments and the private sector. Its public housing subsidies, rental assistance, and housing finance activities have proven to be costly and damaging to the economy. The department's poor management and misguided policies have led to fraud, corruption, and much wasteful spending.
The department will spent $57 billion in 2012, or about $480 for every U.S. household. It employs 9,400 workers and operates 122 different subsidy programs.
The Department of the Interior
oversees more than 500 million acres of land through the Bureau of Land Management, the National Park Service, the Fish and Wildlife Service, and other agencies. The department also houses the Bureau of Reclamation, which distributes subsidized irrigation water, and the Bureau of Indian Affairs, which administers aid programs for American Indians.
Interior will spend $19 billion in fiscal 2012, but it will collect $8 billion in revenues, which will leave net spending of $11 billion. The department employs about 70,000 workers in 2,400 offices across the nation.
The Department of Labor's
budget is dominated by the unemployment insurance system, which has soared in cost in recent years. The department runs numerous employment and job training programs, but these activities are generally ineffective and duplicate services available in private markets. The department also oversees an array of labor union laws and workplace regulations that restrict freedom and are costly to workers and businesses.
The department will spend $127 billion in fiscal 2012, or about $1,100 for every U.S. household. It employs more than 17,000 workers.
The Department of Transportation
subsidizes and regulates highways, airports, air traffic control, urban transit, passenger rail, and other activities. However, taxpayers and consumers would be better off if these activities were privatized, as has occurred in numerous other nations. Opening up the financing and operation of transportation infrastructure to the private sector would save money, spur innovation, and reduce congestion.
The department will spend about $84 billion in 2012, or about $710 for every U.S. household. It employs 58,000 workers and operates 83 subsidy programs.