For starters, the term entitlements is a misnomer. A more appropriate term would be earned benefits. But more to the point. When Republicans are asked about the solution to the deficit, it would be so refreshing to hear one of them respond with the following. First, we should trim (note trim, not drastically cut - I'm still for weapons development) the budget of the Defense Department - the most bloated budget of all federal agencies - with its cost overruns and no-bid contracts.
We should immediately strike the law that allows "parking" money in the Caymans, and elsewhere, which is solely to avoid taxes. End corporate welfare. Some of the most profitable American corporations not only pay no tax, they receive a tax credit!
Apply a stiff tariff on imported goods made by American companies overseas. An aside. I don't blame corporate CEOs individually for shipping jobs overseas. For the most part they are in a competitive environment and even if some are inclined to think it's un-American, they get forced into it by their competitors. If the government let them know up front that their products would face a stiff tax penalty when brought in to this country, I believe it would alter their thinking.
Pitifully, the first words of every Republican response to the question above that I've heard is to let the middle-class (by cutting entitlements) bear the brunt of the problem. Period. It's obvious that they don't want in any way to curtail cost overruns in the Defense Department for that would impair the excessive profits for the contractors which in turn might limit campaign contributions. Heaven forbid! And just think, they pointed the finger at the president for catering to women, blacks, Latinos, elderly, youth, etc., while they catered to a select 2 percent. Isn't government supposed to work for most of the country?
Some will say, and maybe correctly, the deficit can't be solved unless entitlements are addressed. Social Security is still solvent. So is Obamacare, which hasn't yet been fully implemented. The deficit is a national problem and all should bear some pain in solving it. My contention is just don't start with entitlements.