Romer: We Need 'Compassionate Deficit Reduction'
Cutting the Deficit, With Compassion, by Christina Romer, Commentary, NY Times: Aside from the empty chair that Clint Eastwood debated, the main prop at the Republican convention was a debt clock, highlighting the federal deficit and the growing national debt. The importance of dealing with the deficit will clearly be a major Republican theme this fall. So far, Democrats have mostly been playing defense on this issue by criticizing the Romney-Ryan approach. It’s time for them to go on offense by putting their own plan front and center.
Thanks to former President George W. Bush — remember the compassionate conservative? — I have a good name for the fundamental principle that should guide the Democratic alternative: compassionate deficit reduction. The essence is to cut the deficit in a way that does as little harm as possible to people, jobs and economic opportunity. ...
Why is this the compassionate approach? Because immediate, extreme austerity would plunge us back into recession. ... [gives details of "compassionate" plan] ...
Honest talk about the deficit is risky. Voters are more enthusiastic about the abstract notion of deficit reduction than about the painful details of accomplishing it. But deficit reduction is coming, and this election will most likely determine how it’s done. Democrats owe it to the American people to detail their more compassionate approach so that voters can make an informed choice.
Posted by Mark Thoma on Saturday, September 8, 2012 at 12:47 PM in Budget Deficit, Economics, Politics |
You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.