Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The federal government should spend when times are bad...

...and cut when times are good.

I'm so dismayed that otherwise progressive people (like some of my union brothers) are calling for cuts in federal spending in the middle of a huge recession. The fact that Republicans are saying we should cut should give us pause, as they are so often wrong, especially on economic questions (this is a Bush recession, after all).

The fact is that we are suffering from lack of demand while borrowing costs are extremely low. This is the perfect time to spend billions of infrastructure, which will pay big dividends in the long run, while employing lots of people in the short run.

And yet, here we are again buying into the Republican framing of the debate, that we need to cut, cut, cut, when, in fact and as usual, the exact opposite of what Republicans are saying is true.

The one exception I can think of to prove the rule is that some, and I mean very few, Republicans are actually calling for cutting the Pentagon's budget. Of course, when the time comes to actually vote to cut defense, it's a safe bet that we'll see just how serious they are.

For more, see:

and many recent postings to my recommended reading list.

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