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Be a 'Budget Hero'

Earlier today, the Senate passed the fiscal 2009 budget conference report, a blueprint laying out where $1 trillion in federal spending should go in the coming year. The House is expected to follow suit tomorrow.

Play Budget Hero

Was the budget too big? Too small? Should taxes be lower or higher? Unless you're one of 535 members of Congress, you don't get a vote. But now you can at least put yourself in their fiscal shoes for a few minutes by playing the new "Budget Hero" game, produced by American Public Media.

The game is like an interactive, slightly wonkier version of Schoolhouse Rock. You get to decide which issues and priorities are important to you, and then you have to move money around and cut or raise taxes as you see fit. Along the way, the game will tell you how much you're adding to or subtracting from the budget deficit.

Capitol Briefing's initial conclusion after giving it a try: Writing a budget is hard work. Maybe that's why members of Congress get paid $170,000 a year. (And sorry, it doesn't appear that the game will let you cut that number down in your own budget).

By Ben Pershing  |  June 4, 2008; 2:45 PM ET
Categories:  Purse Strings  
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