Republicans and Democrats are both right…and wrong on deficit.

I very much appreciate the concept of reducing the national debt. However, cutting taxes but not spending does not reduce the national debt anymore than reducing your credit card burden by just ceasing to pay the bill reduces your debt. Similarly getting new credit cards or higher credit limits does not reduce your debt.

Unfortunately it seems that Republicans and Democrats each focus on one half the problem. Republicans advocate slashing taxes and ignoring the mounting debt service, usually without decreasing spending. They use an anticipated Laffer Curve increase in economic activity or a belief that mounting debt caused by starving the Treasury will force cuts in spending as rationale.

The Laffer Curve, is in my opinion, an expression of real world economic behavior but like all economic principles it is based on the common economic caveat ‘that all other factors are equal’ and ‘in a healthy economy:. Neither is the case currently.

The idea that starving the Treasury will halt profligate spending might have some merit if the option of just raising the debt limit didn’t exist and if it didn’t cause mass suffering on a scale not known in this country for a hundred years. As it is we simply increase our debt limit, and when mass suffering kicks in we will kick those who machined it out of office and swing 180 degrees the other way.

Democrats advocate the opposite half of the solution. They advocate ever increasing taxes but also increasing or at least static spending. They have a belief,or at least hope, that somehow if income disparity is reduced and vast social programs expanded that the sector of the population unable to pay taxes and not working will in short turn become taxpayers, positive contributors to society and produce taxable economic prosperity in sufficient quantities to generate enough revenue to pay down the debt. That sole reliance is again based on economics that have merit if all other problems and forces are not in effect. Accrued complex social problems driven by more than just inequality of wealth actually drive and underlay inequality of wealth and require attention that just spending ever devalued currency will provide.

.They ignore past failures in social programs (instead simply saying that they need more expansion to succeed), non capital deficient social and cultural problems and ignore human nature which generally demands recompense for investment as well as labor.

The only way to decrease national debt is by increasing taxation to cover current deficits plus debt paydown and slowly, gradually decreasing spending at a rate that does not cause mass hunger or homelessness while repairing social fabric rot by firm and loving attentio . An increased tax burden across the board will create incentive for taxpayers to demand more future fiscal responsibility without prompting extreme left and right swings and policy changes that have heretofore only added to debt.

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