The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has released its 2016 LongTerm Budget Outlook, the annualreport that analyzes our nation’s longterm economic health. Not surprisingly, the report paints a bleak economic outlook, saying, “…federal debt as a share of GDP would reach unprecedented levels if current laws generally remain unchanged. Such high and rising debt would have serious consequences for the nation’s budget and economy.”
While these new projections are already dire, our analysis shows that CBO’s outlook seriously underestimates the growth of federal debt during the coming decades. This is because CBO debt calculations completely overlook the intragovernmental debt that is earmarked to pay for Social Security and Medicare. By ignoring these enormous government spending programs and their debt, CBO underestimates the rapid rate at which our nation is heading toward a debt crisis.
The problem is that CBO excludes projections for “gross debt” in the longterm report, even though that data is available in CBO’s 10-year budget projections.2 The debt CBO does calculate over the long-term, known as “public debt,” paints a rosier picture of our economic outlook than the more realistic measure of gross debt. This is important because a more accurate assessment of our nation’s fiscal outlook would inform both citizens and lawmakers about the need for swift action to reduce spending.
Using the economic data available from CBO’s long-term report and historical spending and debt information, Freedom Partners has developed a more realistic projection of our growing federal debt. Based on more accurate estimating techniques, we’ve determined that the gross federal debt will nearly double by 2030 (from $19.3 trillion to $37.8 trillion), reaching 116 percent of GDP.3 This projection is 23.5 percent higher than CBO predicts.
»Click here to read the Freedom Partners Institute CBO Report
Reason.com recently published an article that discussed a Freedom Partners Institute study title “Will a New Congress Hit the Brakes on Innovation,” which highlights the members of Congress who are critical of the emerging peer-to-peer economy but frequently use and benefit from services like Uber, AirBnB and Lyft.
“It’s in vogue for Democrats to decry the sharing economy as exploitative and unsafe. Cities across the country, nearly all of them headed by liberals, have cracked down on companies like Lyft and Airbnb that allow regular people to earn money by providing rides across town or renting out their spare bedrooms.
Austin, Texas, recently regulated ride-sharing out of existence completely, while New York Mayor Bill de Blasio last year tried to require the industry to cease growing.
Democratic presidential wannabe Bernie Sanders brags about the ‘serious problems’ he has with Uber.
And if you were a Reason subscriber you’d already have access to the July issue, which features a piece on Hillary Clinton’s disdain for the popular ride-hailing app.
Yet according to a new study from Freedom Partners (full disclosure: I worked there in 2014), Democratic congressional candidates spend more money on ride-sharing services than Republicans do.
See the whole story here and check out our report here.
With the rise of businesses like Uber, Lyft and Airbnb, it is clear that peer-to-peer services are emerging as a more convenient and cost-effective way of connecting consumers with innovative entrepreneurs.
But with the growth of the peer-to-peer economy have come the efforts of entrenched special interests to use government rules and legislation to stifle the new industries that pose a risk to the status quo. Some federal, state and local policymakers have indicated their support for reclassifying workers, imposing more stringent licensing processes and outright barring these new, innovative competitors from operating.
That’s the topic of a new report by Freedom Partners Institute, “Will A New Congress Hit The Brakes On Innovation?”, which highlights the members of Congress who are critical of the emerging peer-to-peer economy but frequently use and benefit from services like Uber, AirBnB and Lyft.
Pulling from FEC filings, the report finds that the use of the peer-to-peer economy in 2016 is outpacing that of previous election cycles and, by a factor of four to three, Democrats use ride-sharing more than Republicans.
The release of this report comes in light of threats to crack down on the industry by policymakers and elected officials alike. In a recent speech to the New America Foundation, U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren pushed for harsher “rules and regulations” against the peer-to-peer economy. (Presidential candidates Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders and Martin O’Malley made similar remarks earlier this year.) Warren’s remarks came on the heels of Uber and Lyft pulling operations in tech hub Austin, Texas, after strict background check regulations were imposed on the companies.
To read the full report, click here.
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