Ed Feulner

Ban corporate welfare. Even before the financial bailouts, Washington spent more on corporate welfare ($90 billion) than on homeland security ($70 billion). Americans should not be taxed to subsidize profitable companies. Lawmakers could start by reforming America’s largest corporate welfare program: farm subsidies, which are overwhelmingly distributed to large, profitable agribusinesses rather than struggling family farmers. Other programs, such as the Advanced Innovation Program (formerly the Advanced Technology Program) should be cut.

Eliminate pork and waste. Each year, Washington loses billions of dollars to payment errors and pays billion more to maintain vacant federal properties. Washington also diverts about $20 billion annually into pork projects, corrupting the legislative process by assigning taxpayer dollars on the basis of lobbying rather than merit.

Bring federal pay into line with the private sector. Besides doing too many things, best left to the private sector and the states, the federal government pays its employees substantially more than they would earn in the private sector. Total compensation -- hourly wages plus benefits -- is 30 to 40 percent above that of comparable private-sector workers. Aligning federal compensation with market rates would save taxpayers about $47 billion annually.

Without serious planning and foresight, America’s future will be grim. The unrest in Europe in recent years, from Greece to Great Britain, is a warning, a crystal ball through which we can see what might well happen to us should we succumb to the temptations of irresponsible government.

Ed Feulner

Dr. Edwin Feulner is Founder of The Heritage Foundation, a Townhall.com Gold Partner, and co-author of Getting America Right: The True Conservative Values Our Nation Needs Today .
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