One would think that people are getting tired of the Obama administration declaring the end of the world
. Obviously, the government has certain obligations that it should meet -- Social Security checks, national defense, courts. But to go and argue that there can't be large (say a cut of a third to forty percent) or even moderate cuts (say 20 percent) in government spending seems silly. Haven't we seen enough incorrect predictions about the benefits from more spending to discount warnings against cutting spending? The only tax cuts that the Obama administration wants are those that distort investment decisions, where the government micromanages where investments should go. Of course, wasn't this the administration that promised to CUT government spending.
Austan Goolsbee, chairman of the U.S. Council of Economic Advisers, said if Congress fails to raise the debt ceiling, the “impact on the economy would be catastrophic.”
“I don’t see why anybody’s playing chicken with the debt ceiling,” Goolsbee said today on ABC’s “This Week” program. “If we get to the point where we damage the full faith and credit of the United States, that would be the first default in history caused purely by insanity.”
The government is slated to hit the legal limit on borrowing, $14.3 trillion, early this year. Congress must agree to raise that ceiling or the U.S. could be forced to default on its obligations. After candidates supported by anti-deficit Tea Party activists were elected on pledges to rein in government spending, some lawmakers have said they would demand budget cuts in exchange for voting to raise the debt ceiling. . . .
Goolsbee said he anticipates Obama will find common ground with Republicans on legislation to benefit the economy, citing investment incentives and tax cuts for workers and small businesses, and warned against cutting back on spending needed for economic growth. . . .
Yet, take Obama's vote against raising the debt limit in March 2006
. This was the last stand-alone debt limit vote on which then-Senator Obama voted. He was one of 48 members to vote against the increase, which passed with 52 votes.
“The fact that we are here today to debate raising America's debt limit is a sign of leadership failure. It is a sign that the U.S. Government can't pay its own bills. It is a sign that we now depend on ongoing financial assistance from foreign countries to finance our Government's reckless fiscal policies. ... Increasing America's debt weakens us domestically and internationally. Leadership means that ‘the buck stops here. Instead, Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and grandchildren. America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership. Americans deserve better.”
Obama attacked Bush for the deficits and blamed them for the bad economy in October 2008. Here is something from the third debate
SCHIEFFER: . . . We found out yesterday that this year's deficit will reach an astounding record high $455 billion. Some experts say it could go to $1 trillion next year. . . .
OBAMA: . . . But there is no doubt that we've been living beyond our means and we're going to have to make some adjustments. Now, what I've done throughout this campaign is to propose a net spending cut. . . .
. . . What I want to emphasize, though, is that I have been a strong proponent of pay-as- you-go. Every dollar that I've proposed, I've proposed an additional cut so that it matches. . . .
. . . When President Bush came into office, we had a budget surplus and the national debt was a little over $5 trillion. It has doubled over the last eight years. . . .
. . . So one of the things that I think we have to recognize is pursuing the same kinds of policies that we pursued over the last eight years is not going to bring down the deficit. And, frankly, Senator McCain voted for four out of five of President Bush's budgets. . . .
From the second debate
OBAMA: . . . But I think it's important just to remember a little bit of history. When George Bush came into office, we had surpluses. And now we have half-a-trillion-dollar deficit annually.
When George Bush came into office, our debt -- national debt was around $5 trillion. It's now over $10 trillion. . . .
. . . we've also got to make spending cuts. And what I've proposed, you'll hear Senator McCain say, well, he's proposing a whole bunch of new spending, but actually I'm cutting more than I'm spending so that it will be a net spending cut. . . .
Labels: brokenpromisesobama, deficits