There Was No “Stimulus” Spending in Aggregate

One of the claims that Tea Partiers, Republicans, and conservative/neo-liberal economists have been making for some time is that "the stimulus has failed". They conclude that Keynesian economics and economic policies are failures.  Since, like most claims of Republicans and other politicians, these assertions are usually repeated uncritically by the news media, it's close to … Continue reading There Was No “Stimulus” Spending in Aggregate

I Repeat: Social Security Is *Not* the Problem

I've observed it before, but it deserves repeating.  Social Security is NOT the cause of any present or future Federal government deficits. Social Security is NOT financially troubled. Social Security IS financially sound.  To the extent the Federal government has a deficit problem (which in reality is much less than people think, but that's another … Continue reading I Repeat: Social Security Is *Not* the Problem

More re: National Debt

Just after I finished my Background Info on National  Debt post, I ran across this from James Galbraith at New Deal 2.0. He does a nice job of pointing out some of the errors of the "oh-my-god-the-deficit-is-going-to-destroy-us-if-we-don't-cut-grandma's-social-security" crowd. For  those not aware, Pete Peterson is a billionaire that has spent millions trying to frighten people … Continue reading More re: National Debt

Background Info on U.S. National Debt

This is another post in response to a student request.  Here are some links that provide background information about the U.S. national debt. First, the definitive sources: for the exact amount of debt by year:  U.S Treasury Direct - Reports: http://www.treasurydirect.gov/govt/reports/pd/histdebt/histdebt.htm this site also has links, graphs, charts on the makeup of the debt by … Continue reading Background Info on U.S. National Debt

One More Time, the Government Is NOT Like a Household or a Business

Ron Dzwonkowski of the Detroit Free Press ran a column today urging people to participate in various "town hall" discussions to help figure out the US can deal with it's "deficit" and the "debt" that must "lead to collapse". Mr. Dzwonkowski adopts the posture of  "reasonable, practical man" - not that of an ideologue.  In … Continue reading One More Time, the Government Is NOT Like a Household or a Business

Interesting Stuff – Good Stuff This Week

Bruce Bartlett (a Republican) does a pretty good job defusing myths and fears about the federal debt at  What is the National Debt? He still misses how a deficit is necessary to ensure an adequate money supply without forcing the private sector to go into increasing debt, but overall good job.  No monsters here, so … Continue reading Interesting Stuff – Good Stuff This Week

Supply Side Arguments for Tax Cuts for the Rich Ignore both Theory and Evidence

One of the political-economic legacies of the late 1970's and early 1980's was a belief in  supply-side theories of tax cuts as an "engine of growth".   Republicans have claimed this as  a legacy from Ronald Reagan.  In fact, however, the cutting of top marginal income tax rates was started by Jimmy Carter.  Under Carter's administration … Continue reading Supply Side Arguments for Tax Cuts for the Rich Ignore both Theory and Evidence

Why We Really Need to End the Empire: “We Can’t Cut Spending – Forbes.com”

Bruce Bartlett explains why a "balanced budget" for the US federal government is an impossibility.  Unfortunately, most people who strenously object to the deficit and want a balanced budget simply don't understand the realities.  They often confuse "millions" and "billions" (it takes 1000 millions to equal a billion).  They further operate from greatly distorted ideas … Continue reading Why We Really Need to End the Empire: “We Can’t Cut Spending – Forbes.com”