Today’s output from Blogistan Polytechnic Institute’s state-of-the-art HEMMED (High-Energy Meta Mojo Elucidation Detector) machine is something of the People, by the People and for the People.

Budgets have been in the news a lot lately.

From the budget passed by the House Republicans on April 15th to the budget outline presented by President Barack Obama, we are learning that budgets are more than just numbers and graphs. They are roadmaps to the future, they are moral documents and they are a strong statement of the values that are important to us as a country and a people.

While we can ask “what did they think would happen?” as we see the intense pushback to the Republican/Ryan plan, we also have to ask if these are the only options we have to choose from.

Actually, no. It turns out that the People (Progressive People) have a budget too.

The Congressional Progressive Caucus is advancing what they call the People’s Budget :

The CPC proposal:
• Eliminates the deficits and creates a surplus by 2021
• Puts America back to work with a “Make it in America” jobs program
• Protects the social safety net
• Ends the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq
• Is FAIR (Fixing America’s Inequality Responsibly)

What the proposal accomplishes:
• Primary budget balance by 2014.
• Budget surplus by 2021.
• Reduces public debt as a share of GDP to 64.1% by 2021, down 16.5 percentage points from
a baseline fully adjusted for both the doc fix and the AMT patch.
• Reduces deficits by $5.6 trillion over 2012-21, relative to this adjusted baseline.
• Outlays equal to 22.2% of GDP and revenue equal 22.3% of GDP by 2021.

From the budget document (PDF):

Budgets are more than collections of numbers; they are a statement of our values. The Congressional Progressive Caucus Budget is a reflection of the values and priorities of working families in this country. The “People’s Budget” charts a path that keeps America exceptional in the 21st century, while addressing the most pressing problems facing the nation today. Our Budget eliminates the deficit and stabilizes the debt, puts Americans back to work, and restores our economic competiveness.

Others are starting to take notice of the People’s Budget.

Paul Krugman in his column this week (subscription may be required) said:

So why isn’t someone offering a proposal reflecting the reality that the Bush tax cuts were a huge mistake, and suggesting that increased revenue play a major role in deficit reduction? Actually, someone is — and I’ll get to that in a moment.

… the only major budget proposal out there offering a plausible path to balancing the budget is the one that includes significant tax increases: the “People’s Budget” from the Congressional Progressive Caucus, which — unlike the Ryan plan, which was just right-wing orthodoxy with an added dose of magical thinking — is genuinely courageous because it calls for shared sacrifice.

All of this, combined with spending cuts mostly focused on defense, is projected to yield a balanced budget by 2021. And the proposal achieves this without dismantling the legacy of the New Deal, which gave us Social Security, and the Great Society, which gave us Medicare and Medicaid.

Dr. Krugman goes on to point out that this budget has no more chance of getting signed into law than Paul Ryan’s budget does. And that is a shame.

Speaking of shame, please burn this into your memory. There are no village stocks large enough to hold 235 members of congress but maybe we can fashion some shaming signs that look like this:
Republican Budget Passes

Or better yet, some campaign ads. I like this one … a lot:

Happy Tuesday to everyone and fist bumps!

The BPI Campus Progressive agenda:
1. People matter more than profits.2. The earth is our home, not our trash can.
3. We need good government for both #1 and #2.

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