Monday, March 14, 2011

We're Not Broke

This post will inevitably lead to extended debate in comments about the proper role of government, but it's worth noting regardless.

In a column at The Washington Post today, E.J. Dionne asks "What if we're not broke?"  He could have saved some space by simply saying, "We're not broke."  Mr. Dionne really spends his time in the column going over, once more, all the reasons we aren't broke, why the Republican push to severely cut non-discretionary spending is about ideology, not fiscal responsibility, and the irresponsibility of taking any tax increases off the table entirely.

If it sounds like a song on repeat, that's because it is.  However, you have to keep saying it to combat the factually incorrect talking point that the nation is broke.  Is there a looming, long term fiscal crisis?  Yes.  Will cutting $60 billion dollars do anything to avert that?  No.  Once more with feeling.

2 comments:

Colin said...

I'm not going to get into a debate over semantics. Broke or not broke, we've got big-time fiscal problems with a national debt rapidly nearing 100% of GDP and a $1.6 trillion deficit. Looking ahead, the picture is equally grim with gaping deficits as far as the eye can see, topped off by a deficit of 3.1% of GDP projected for 2011. And the really scary part is that it is based on optimistic assumptions that with no recession, robust growth, no jump in interest rates on the debt and revenue projections as a percentage of GDP that are the same as those recording during the booming days of the 1990s.

Meanwhile, we've got President Obama who said just last October that we're facing an "untenable fiscal situation."

So I guess we're not broke, we're just facing an untenable fiscal situation. Hooray.

Colin said...

Ugh, meant projection for 2021, not 2011.