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Warren Buffett's Smile Missing as His "5-Minute Deficit Fix" Hits Facebook

Friday, 28 Oct 2011 | 1:31 PM ET
Warren Buffett
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Warren Buffett

Warren Buffett's "five-minute" plan to fix the nation's deficit problem .. delivered with a laugh during a live interview on CNBC in July .. has gone viral.

What's missing, however, is the laugh.

The WSJ's Total Return blog notes there's a chain letter now circulating by email and on Facebook that features this line from Buffett's July 7 interview in Sun Valley, Idaho with Becky Quick:

"I could end the deficit in five minutes. You just pass a law that says that any time there's a deficit of more than three percent of GDP, all sitting members of Congress are ineligible for re-election."

The chain letter includes several other ideas to "reform" Congress, and tells its recipients that "Warren Buffet is asking each addressee to forward this email to a minimum of twenty people."

Now, the facts.

First, to state the obvious, Berkshire says in a statement that "the chain letter was not sent out by Warren of course nor did he in any way suggest a chain letter."

Second, the Berkshire statement says Buffett's 'five-minute deficit plan' was "not a serious proposal; just intended to emphasize the importance of proper incentives (and problems when they are absent)."

In our post that July day headlined "Warren Buffett's 5-Minute Plan to Fix the Deficit", we called it "his not-entirely serious (but not entirely joking either) plan."

Here's the video clip. Judge for yourself.

Buffett's Solution to End the Deficit
Billionaire Warren Buffett believes he has the solution for solving America's deficit crisis, and it involves forcing politicians to actually do their job.

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