Fascinating blog du jour: 4.12.2006

Today's highly fascinating blog: The Skeptical Optimist

His is one of the few blogs I've encountered who is in favor of the National Debt, and who has argued in it's favor in a very coherent and passonate way. For example, take his Why Debt Doomsday is a Myth
It’s a myth advanced by people on all sides of the political landscape. It invokes unfounded fear in voters everywhere. Democrats use it as a potent political weapon; tax rate hikes to "fix it" are at the top of their fiscal agenda. Republicans also use it as a potent political weapon; spending cuts to "fix it" are high on their agenda. Entire presidential campaigns by independent candidates have been predicated on widespread, unfounded fear of the debt.

But debt doomsday is a myth. Its fundamental flaw is that it ignores two very important financial mechanisms:
  • debt rollover; and
  • growing tax receipts in a growing economy.

Two things cause interest payments to grow: interest rates, and debt growth. Keeping inflation low and steady will help hold interest rates down. Debt grows steadily when we run perennial deficits—but tax receipts grow in tandem with the growth of the economy. Bottom line: If the economy grows at least a fast as the debt grows, and inflation is low and under control, our ability to make growing interest payments will increase at least as fast as our obligation to make those interest payments.

If we can sustain those conditions, our grandchildren will have much larger incomes than we do, but will have a debt burden that is no worse than ours. Do you like that scenario as much as I do? Then why is there so little discussion about how to sustain those conditions? Why is all the talk focused on how to cut this or cut that?

Debt doomsday is a myth. The national debt has used up more than its share of the national debate on fiscal policy. Let’s press our politicians, on both sides, on the question of how best to grow the economy.

I cannot recommend this site more highly.

posted by William Woody at 6:05 PM

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A moderate conservative living in the left coast, surrounded by the sureal, wonders if there is a sane life living amongst those who have lost touch with reality.

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