Friday, 29 March 2013

Krugman Says the Message about How the Deficit is a Crock Has Gotten Out, But Not Here Apparently

The Nobel laureate Paul Krugman has been talking for several years about how the fear-mongering about the deficit is nonsense.  Today he writes that maybe this message is getting through: "It’s as if someone sent out a memo saying that the Chicken Little act, with its repeated warnings of a U.S. debt crisis that keeps not happening, has outlived its usefulness"

North of the Border that idea has yet to get into the heads of the Harperites, witness the emphasis on expense control in the recent Federal budget with its downloading of retraining programs to the provinces..  The supposedly left-wing PQ has also just patted itself on the back about the way it will balance the budget in the coming fiscal year.

But, as Krugman writes, there is no real deficit crisis in North America. Instead there is a real danger that we are mortgaging our future by not repairing/improving our infrastructure, teaching our kids, healing our sick. 

"Why are we shortchanging the future so dramatically and inexcusably?," Krugman asks. "Blame the deficit scolds, who weep crocodile tears over the supposed burden of debt on the next generation, but whose constant inveighing against the risks of government borrowing, by undercutting political support for public investment and job creation, has done far more to cheat our children than deficits ever did.

"Fiscal policy is, indeed, a moral issue, and we should be ashamed of what we’re doing to the next generation’s economic prospects. But our sin involves investing too little, not borrowing too much — and the deficit scolds, for all their claims to have our children’s interests at heart, are actually the bad guys in this story."

Okay, let's hope that message gets across here and South of the Border.

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