April 9, 2010

Why We Can't Reduce The Deficit | The New Republic

Chait has two posts on this subject that are worth reading. First, this one that shows that the right wing is still in denial about supply-side economics. The continued belief that cutting taxes will fix our deficit problems after the last major tax cut exploded our deficit--well, it just amazes me. Talk about your "faith-based" program. This is a complete denial of evidence. Not, of course, that targeted tax cuts can't spur investment--I accept that. But this across the board call for tax cuts is destructive governing. It is actually the same as suggesting openly that Republicans want states to fail economically, and want our government not to actually govern. Instead, they sell the lie that tax cuts=good governing.

His second post is an even better look at the supposed conservative minds. In a conversation between David Frum and Larry Kudlow, Kudlow argues that if we cut the federal payroll by 5-10%, we would see a significant savings and deficit reduction. Frum actually checks the math and finds
A 5% across the board pay cut would save no more than $13 billion , and in fact much less: remember, federal pay is unusually benefits-heavy.
To put it another way: even if we fired every single federal civil servant and shuttered the entire non-defense federal government, three-fourths of the budget deficit would still be with us.
We need smarter conservatives. I know they are out there. Why are they not in leadership? Why are we stuck with these people?

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