Whilst our budget in terms of figures at £8 billion ($16 billion) is dwarfed in comparison with your $400 (£200) plus billion, as a percentage of gross domestic product (GDP) we seem to be following an almost identical pattern, at around 4% in each case. Similarly, we are both blaming the same problem, an aging population and runaway pensions and retirement packages.
I am not sure how you are going to combat yours, but the only similarity I can find is that both countries are seeking to break free from commitments to health and pension agreements made in the past, passing the responsibility onto the tax payer.
However, there are two ideas that Bush might want to borrow from Blair. The first is that you start reducing the services provided to pensioners, thus reducing the growth of their numbers and the second is that you increase the age of retirement. Tony Blair is increasing the retirement age of men from 65 to 68 and women from 60-65. The other advantage of the second route of course is that the pensioners hopefully will be drawing pensions for a lesser number of years, thus reducing the cost to the government.
One slight flaw is that scientists have discovered that we are living around 2 years longer than we would have done say two decades ago.
I don’t know about you my American friend but it seems to me to be a case of politically and taxation engineered population culling.