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Subject:  Re: smaller government, DrB? Date:  5/16/2013  1:09 PM
Author:  Windchasers Number:  423074 of 462127

Decided to pull this into a new thread. As you are one of the very few semi-reasonable conservatives we encounter at TMF (most are practically foaming at the mouth), I wanted to probe this further.

How do we make it "smaller"? Please be relatively specific. I don't expect precise head-count cuts, etc. But just saying "eliminating waste" isn't helpful. Do we cut air traffic control? Do we reduce the Navy by x-number of ships? Do we shutter the SEC or the EPA or the FDA (or all of them)?

Ooooh! Ooh! I want to play!
As a sorta "liberaltarian", I favor smaller government, both fiscally and socially, but with some smart controls.

To start, I'd cut total defense spending* by ~50%, phasing this in at a rate of a few %/year. A strong economy is the best defense, and excess military spending saps our economic strength. To compensate for a weaker military, we need to do a few things:
1) Push our allies to step it up. Australia, Japan, and NATO, you need to pull more weight.
2) Start a strong, unending push for human rights around the world. The happier, more informed, and free-er other countries are, the less interested in going to war they are, and the less need we have for a strong military.
3) Continue to devote ourselves to free trade. No one wants to go to war with your trading partners; it hurts your economy and your citizens' standard of living.


Regulation. Loosen FDA regulations on drugs. New medicines should have to only perform as well as old ones, not better. This opens up the market for more competition.
End the War on Drugs. If we need to make some drugs illegal, make t