Cut Wasteful Spending?

Ever wish you could whisper in the president's ear? Give him advice on issues plaguing the nation? Well, here's your chance to tell the world what you would do if you were president of the United States. Twice weekly, we'll ask our readers a question about an issue facing the nation and post your responses here.

Today's topic:

The 2006 federal deficit will be lower than expected, thanks to added tax revenue, President Bush said Tuesday.

The president said his pro-growth policies, including tax cuts passed in 2001 and 2003 and a limit on additional discretionary spending, had enabled the economy to improve tax revenues to the point that his 2004 pledge to cut the deficit in half — to $260 billion by 2009 — will be reached one year early.

President Bush's pledge to cut the deficit in half by 2009 may be reached one year earlier if he can control wasteful spending. He says the real threat of overspending comes from unsustainable growth for entitlement programs, like Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. Read more.

If YOU were president, would you cut funding for any of these programs, and why?

Click on the links in the boxes on the right to read recent stories on this topic, then e-mail us at

Check back to find out what FOX Fans are saying!

"If I were president, I would privatize Social Security. I would also cut funding for both Medicare and Medicaid. These programs should also be carried out by the private sector. The federal government should be involved with foreign and domestic security, but it has no business in medicine or retirement programs." — Steven (Chandler, AZ)

"I would never cut Social Security or Medicare. It's easy to look down from your ivory tower and condemn these programs when you don't have to live off them." — Margie

"I would privatize Social Security, rid the country of income taxes, and make this country a tax haven for the rich, the producers, the great minds, and all the people who actually make something of themselves. I would rid the country of useless welfare programs. I would also make all illegal drugs legal and put people's health into their own hands." — Jose (Jacksonville, FL)

"I would not the programs that we've been forced to pay into all these years. I know it's a problem, but it's a government-created problem, and it shouldn't cause the average American who is counting on Social Security and health benefits to do without." — Keith (Virginia)

"I would begin by adjusting Social Security. The retirement age needs to be set back immediately. People are living longer than when this program was set up. The minimum age for people entering the system today should be 80. Medicare and Medicaid are rife with corruption and fraud because there is no real accountability." — Thomas (Houston, TX)

"Obviously, all the people who want to cut vital social programs have great jobs, lots of money, a secure retirement, and the best in health care benefits. That's great for them, but these programs are for people who don’t have all that. A lot of people who want to cut these programs are going to need at least one, or even more, of them in the future. Grandparents, the sick, and the handicapped all need Social Security." — Peter (Plymouth, MA)

"The government should get out of Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid. This can be done gradually so as to lessen the impact to those already depending on these programs. Responsible people will learn to prepare for their future and the rest will just have to depend on their children or charity. It might take a century to accomplish this, but it will eventually get us back to how the citizens of this country used to take care of themselves." — Jim (Fort Atkinson, WI)

"I don’t know about Medicare and Medicaid, but we absolutely have to cut back spending for Social Security. We have to push back the age when Americans become eligible for Social Security benefits. And as Americans life expectancy increases over time, it very logical to proportionately push back the age." — Brian (Minneapolis, MN)

"I would never elect to cut spending on the weak in our society — elderly and low income children. We should hit the pocketbooks of the wealthy." — Patricia

"To fix the Social Security System it is necessary to privatize at least 25 percent of the FICA payment for private accounts and reduce the amount of pay out to the new retiree that this will balance. It is also necessary to increase the FICA payment by 1.3 percent now, while continuing to increase the payment by the COLA adjustment in the future. To fix Medicare, I would reduce the payout to doctors and hospitals by 11 percent across the board and reduce the number of procedures covered. Doctors can refuse Medicare patients and/or bill the patient." — Daniel

"People 35 years of age and younger should have their Social Security and Medicare benefits cut to make the programs not go bankrupt. Taking away benefits of people currently in the programs would be terribly unfair." — Jim (Austin, TX)

"I would not cut Social Security, Medicare or Medicaid because that largely goes to the people that spent their entire lives paying into it. I would absolutely cut or eliminate all the programs that reward people for not working." — Buck (Oregon)

"These are not entitlement programs, they are dependency programs. Our government has forced people to rely on it to provide for them. We should be a compassionate country and help those in real need, those incapable of caring for themselves, without providing for people in every scenario. Outside of protecting our people against our enemies, every social program would be cut back." — Glenn (Laguna Hills, CA)

"I would cut spending for the Medicaid program only because there are generations of welfare recipients that should be working, instead of collecting checks. I would strengthen the program so that you must work to collect. The other two systems must stay in place and be funded from the pork barrel requests from Congress. I would, though, eliminate their unnecessary attachments to Social Security." — Sandy (Bamberg, SC)