Bartlett: End the Debt Ceiling

August 1st, 2011 at 11:21 am | 6 Comments |

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One consequence of the psychodrama over the debt ceiling is that we can now discuss how to remove it. In his column Bruce Bartlett reminds us that we have known since the 1950′s that the debt ceiling doesn’t reduce spending:

While politicians and the general public believe that the debt limit is an important constraint on national indebtedness, not one iota of evidence supports this belief. Economists have been making this point repeatedly for more than 50 years. In 1959, Marshall Robinson of the Brookings Institution came to this conclusion in a book-length study of the debt limit:

On the record, the debt ceiling experiment has failed. Although at times the ceiling has clamped down on government spending, it has not prevented the long-term growth of debt. Indeed, there is some evidence that reactions to its short-run pressure may ultimately contribute to the growth of debt.

Click here to read the full column.

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6 Comments so far ↓

  • LFC

    Bartlett is a voice of reason, knowledge, and sanity. As a result, he really doesn’t fit into today’s Republican Party.

  • Cindyflo

    Neither does Frum, right now – hopefully they can help swing it back to reason. I’m pretty sure the party is about to undergo backlash….

  • valkayec

    The voices to end the debt ceiling are growing. If it’s not ended, we’ll see this dangerous circus play over and over again. A threat to the full faith and credit should not ever be a tool in the political toolbox. End the debt ceiling now. It’s antiquated and needless.

  • Oldskool

    The troubling thing about this horrifying mess that Republicans created is their motivation. Yeah, it was political but it went way over the top.

    When we’re attacked by say terrorists, we can deduce it’s because they don’t like us or our foreign policy. But why would elected officials do the same thing to their own people and their own country? Create so much anxiety bordering on panic?

    Talk about the enemy within, and we have no real weapons to use against them. We are literally their hostages, and whenever they create a crisis, they raise another gun to our heads. They’re crazy people posing as marytrs.