Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Fiscal Discipline?

John Kerry promises to return fiscal discipline to the White House, where deficits will be a thing of the past.

Exactly how he plans to do so is a bit of a mystery, considering the price of all the programs he's promising in order to bribe win voters to his side.

Kevin Hassett of the American Enterprise Institute has analyzed Kerry's economic proposals, and summarizes his findings as follows:
    Our best estimate is that Kerry's proposals will add up to between $2 trillion and $2.1 trillion over the next ten years. Since the revenue from his tax proposals relative to the current baseline is actually negative, this implies that the Kerry proposal would increase the deficit by perhaps as much as $2.5 trillion over the next ten years. ...

    While making all of these promises, Kerry and his surrogates repeatedly have made the claim that they will restore fiscal discipline if elected. They have also promised to adopt a "pay as you go" rule that will guarantee deficit reductions. But they do this at the same time that they promise voters the moon and the stars. It is time for them to state exactly which of Senator Kerry's promises are no longer valid, or stop all of the warm and fuzzy embraces of deficit reduction. They cannot have it both ways.
Of course, Kerry supported deficits before he opposed them, but is willing to reconsider is supportive opposition, considering the complexities of the situation.

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