Letter to the Editor: Goolsbee’s Charade

I am going to write some letter to the editor of newspapers as one of my new year’s resolutions. I will post them here for you.

To the Editor:

The President’s Chief Economist neglects to give a proper background on recent Congressional precedent for maintaining spending when he says in his 1/6/12 op-ed’s tagline:

“It’s normal for deficits to rise during a downturn.The real fiscal challenge is decades down the road.”

Congress usually just increases the baseline spending levels, building spending levels on top of spending levels past.  A downgrade on the U.S. credit rating, multiple debt ceiling hikes resulting from an increasing debt burden, and the the “real challenge” is “decades down the road?” Wrong. The problem is here right now, and not decades down the road. Where it gets worse is when we try to stick to these astronomically high spending levels because “it’s normal for deficits to rise during a downturn.” To listen to Mr. Goolsbee, if things don’t get better, are we to forever have rising deficits even if a recovery takes a decade or two? Given the President’s new jobs bill, you have your answer: yes.

Dealing with the problem now won’t help any incumbent, nor will it be popular.  The time is now to get our house in order. It’s a shame that economists like Mr. Goolsbee need to put on a charade to sell voters on more of the same tripe that got us here.

Jim Swift

Alexandria, Virginia.


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