Thursday, 9 December 2010

On the rank hypocrisy of US deficit hawks

From the New York Times:

“Senator Jim DeMint, Republican of South Carolina, said that he still wanted the Bush-era rates extended permanently and that the cost of the package was worrisome”.

Thank you Mr DeMint for exposing in a nutshell the hypocrisy of US deficit hawks (and let's face it, the majority of deficit hawks the world over - it's just that our American cousins are slightly less bashful about advertising their hypocrisy). Their position can be summed up thus:

  • the deficit is the biggest single issue facing the economy and reducing it has to be the Government’s first priority; and,
  • tax cuts which 1) will provide only a small and hugely inefficient stimulus to a depressed economy suffering high and persistent unemployment; 2) significantly worsen the long-term fiscal outlook; and 3) benefit the richest in society….must be retained at all costs.
Reconcile that if you can.

(The above quote was pulled from the brilliant James Kwak ‘s latest post at Baseline Scenario in which he unpicks the Obama tax deal as does Krugman here and here. Brad DeLong is angry. And so he should be).

Stephen Boyd - STUC

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