Balanced Budget Amendment Archive

Another Path To Solvency

By John Lumbard. The legislatures of seventeen states have recently passed a bill calling for a constitutional convention that would be focused solely on the drafting of a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution.  Each of these bills explicitly states that it will be declared null and void if the Supreme...
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Contagion and Eurosclerosis

By John Lumbard. The debt of Portugal has fallen in value so much that a buyer can now get a yield of 16% on long term, ten year bonds.  Portugal won't have to actually pay 16% until it has to borrow again (most likely when an old bond issue matures and...
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Balanced Budget Amendment Poll

A July poll, conducted by CNN, shows that 74% of Americans are now in favor of a balanced-budget amendment to the Constitution.  It wouldn't be surprising to see that the numbers have ticked a bit higher in August, because the debt-ceiling debate revealed that Congress is far from mustering the...
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Balanced Budget Amendment Pros and Cons

In recent weeks there has been a debate in the editorial pages of The Wall Street Journal regarding the merits of a balanced-budget amendment, or BBA.  First came an opinion piece by Senators DeMint (SC) and Snowe (Maine) in favor of an amendment (so far this year 48 senators have co-sponsored...
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Cut, Cap, and Balance, Explained

Budget proposals are coming fast and furious in Washington these days.  Most of it is political chatter, but there HAVE been a number of proposals that aspire to responsible government for the long term.  Today's top story in that regard is "Cut, Cap, and Balance" which would smooth over some near-term...
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Problems With a Balanced Budget Amendment?

In yesterday's Wall Street Journal Senators Snowe and DeMint wrote an opinion piece (subscription req'd) which points out that none of today's budget negotiations offer anything like a long-term cure for the fiscal irresponsibility that has become the norm in Washington, DC.  They argue that this goal is best achieved...
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The Most Predictable Economic Crisis In History

That's what Erskine Bowles, co-chair of the president's National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility, said about our government's ever-so-slowly-developing fiscal calamity in this Senate Budget Committee testimony. The President disavowed the findings of his commission, but it continued on in a scaled-down group of six members (all Senators) called the Gang of...
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Dominique Strauss-Kahn

By John Lumbard.   What does the allegedly-amoral head of the International Monetary fund have to do with budget deficits in the U.S.?  Ever since the fall of 2008 Americans have been losing trust in their leadership and institutions.  The arrest of "DSK" pulls one more pillar out from under the...
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Building a Prosperous Future

By Tim Munsell.   Our National Debt is over $14 Trillion dollars, and growing by $1.5 trillion dollars a year.  That’s $47,500 per second! And the Congressional Budget Office says that unfunded liabilities for future payments of Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid add tens of trillions more.  This gigantic debt will have enormous consequences...
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Battling Against the Truth

By John Lumbard.   Spending more than you have feels pretty good, so the resistance to balanced budgets---or anything close to balanced budgets---is not surprising.  Still, it's always a bit of a shock to read carefully-thought-out opinions, written by smart people, that are nonsensical efforts to bend reality to justify the status quo. Today...
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