Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Budget follies short-takes:
Unlikely ally

A columnist for, the financial magazine, is not the first source who I'd expect to agreed with me about where any effort to curb the Federal deficit ought to start. But Bruce Bartlett, writing at Capital Gains and Games, has it just right:

...there are really only two options: slash non-entitlement spending on things like national defense or raise taxes.

Exactly. Empire needs to be cut back. The people who have the money have to contribute more taxes. It's obvious, though getting it through the thick skulls of bought-and-paid for politicians will take lots of work.

The difference between Mr. Bartlett and me is that he bemoans this reality, something he considers an unfortunate consequence of the growing political power of elders. His post is an admirably succinct explication of why cutting Social Security and gutting Medicare won't fly politically despite the hopes of most Republicans and those Democrats in hock to billionaire cat food purveyor Pete Peterson. We won't let them do it and we have the power! If interested in the coming political terrain, read the whole thing.

The likes of Nobel economist Paul Krugman have convinced me that deficit anxiety can be largely relieved by restoring economic prosperity. If the Feds still need more money when (if) the economy gets back on its feet, we know where they can find it. Mr. Bartlett has pointed the way.

1 comment:

Darlene said...

There is an interesting article on Reaganomics. According to the author, the plan has always been to 'starve the beast' so the policy wonks can have an excuse to eliminate all social programs like Social Security, Medicare, and all programs that help the poor.

It seems they knew trickle down economics wouldn't work and that was the plan. The plan was to run the deficit sky high; thus giving them an excuse to cut the programs the ultra conservatives didn't like.

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