Federal deficit Archive

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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About That Trust Fund . . .

By James Schaefer Mr. Obama recently stated that he couldn't guarantee that Social Security checks would go out in August if America's debt ceiling weren't raised (Obama's Debt-Ceiling Scare Tactics).   America's taxpayers have paid $2.5 trillion in FICA taxes over the past several decades to create the Social Security trust fund.  It isn't enough...
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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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How to Fix the Health Care Mess

By John Lumbard.   Since 1994 Jeffrey Flier, MD, now Dean of the Harvard Medical School, has been offering a plan for health care reform that would rein in the galloping cost increases that threaten to bankrupt our government and make health care unaffordable to the middle class.  His concept---universal health care...
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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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Term Limits!

By Ralph Lockhart.   Amid all the hoopla about budget cuts, from both sides of the political fence, the media really doesn't do much to explain the entire Federal budget issue.  Consider the recent talk about $38 billion in budget cuts.  That's a huge number . . . . $38,000,000,000, or 38 thousand millions! But...
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The Antidote

By Alan Parks.  Business World writer Holman Jenkins, Jr. lays out the case very well in a Wall Street Journal article on April 6, 2011  that the United States is almost certainly going to deal with its massive deficits and unfunded entitlement liabilities by printing fiat money---which could lead to significant, painful...
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The Farmer and the Lottery

By James Schaefer.   The farmer wins the lottery and is being interviewed by a news reporter.  "What are you planning to do, now that you've got all this money?"  Replies the farmer,"Well, I guess I'll just keep farming 'til the money's gone." Today farmers enjoy so much taxpayer support that it's fair...
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