In case you didn't hear about it, the Canadian government last week decided to stop minting new pennies. The government says it will save $11 million a year by not manufacturing any more of the coins and instead having businesses round prices to the nearest five cents.
This story by Karen Weise in Bloomberg Businessweek explains some, but not all, of the reasons the U.S. won't soon follow the Canadians and do away with its own penny even though the budget savings would be considerably greater. Some additional things to consider:
My column from today's Roll Call explains why you may be VERY disappointed if you're waiting for next year for things to happen on the budget. Can you say more stalemates?
New Budget Cry Is Dodgers’ ‘Wait Till Next Year’
Given that Major League Baseball’s spring training has just begun and that everyone still thinks his or her team is going to win the World Series, the classic Brooklyn Dodger fans’ lamentation of “wait till next year” obviously is inappropriate when talking baseball.
I'll have much more about this later today after the Obama fiscal 2013 budget is formally released around 11:15 am EST, and my column from tomorrow's Roll Call will be devoted to it.
But if you're asked between now and then about the Obama budget and this year's budget debate, you should start by saying that the White House is using the budget say to Republicans in Congress that this year it's the one that's going to be setting the fiscal policy agenda.
It's been almost exactly a year since I posted about this poll that showed definitively that tea party supporters not only wanted to keep the federal spending they like, but in many cases wanted it to increase. They did this at the same time they were insisting the federal budget should be balanced primarily through spending cuts.
This excellent story from yesterday's The New York Times by Binyamin Appelbaum and Robert Gebeloff may use anecdotes to say the same thing, but it does so in an extremely well-written and highly convincing way.
The fact that the Obama administration’s proposed Pentagon spending reductions are not likely to be enacted in 2012 should bring little comfort to the contracting community.
Even if they’re not put in place this year, reducing the military budget from current baseline levels will be hotly debated this year and be a campaign issue.
This is likely to change the budget debate that has occurred since at least 2001 from how much should 2 military spending rise to which reductions are most acceptable. That’s a significant change.
Without an external shock that alters this outlook such as a terrorist attack or new overseas contingency, this changed debate will last at least until a significant deficit reduction plan is adopted, and, regardless of who gets elected and which political party controls each house of Congress, it will make the Pentagon as much a part of that discussion as Medicare and Medicaid.