Friday, April 22, 2005

Alan Greenspan again

More from Alan Greenspan before the Senate Budget Committee.
The Fed chief called for "major deficit-reducing actions" and proposed several procedural steps Congress could implement to restrain the deficit's growth.

Greenspan has frequently said he would prefer the deficit be shrunk as much as possible through spending cuts -- including reductions in Social Security and Medicare benefits -- before taxes are increased. He said yesterday that he believes raising taxes restrains economic growth and that there is "no way you can raise tax rates enough" to cover future spending commitments.

It is good to see Greenspan calling tax increases unsustainable, which he did not mention in his prepared testimony. We can neither raise taxes enough to cover future spending commitments nor increase deficits sustainably. We need to treat the disease and not the symptoms. The disease is future spending commitments. The headline needs to be about cutting spending, not about cutting deficits.


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