The National Review Invites Obama to Nip the Call-For-A-Balanced-Budget-Amendment Gimmickry In the Bud Tomorrow Night. Really.
Okay, why would the National Review, or any high-profile non-mainstream source, put this out a day before the State of the Union address, if not to give Obama a chance to mention it, along with an accompanying explanation of how such an amendment would, say, cause recessions to spiral into depressions–during which time the availability of, say, unemployment compensation would decrease rather than increase, and emergency FEMA funds for, say, the destruction of South Carolina’s coastal region after a major hurricane would have to be offset by cuts in, say, veteran’s benefits or payments to active military personnel?
Any alternative theories about why the National Review did this today? I can’t think of any.
If Obama doesn’t take this ball, this magnificent gift, and run with it tomorrow–if he doesn’t expose this crowd for the unremittingly sophomoric gimmick-a-day ignoramuses that they are–then I’m throwing up my hands.
The National Review’s editors and staff must be starting to really fear the sequester. And I’m not saying that facetiously.
Waiting for picture of Beverly throwing up her hands to be posted…
fwiw, Pethokoukis at the American Enterprise Institute in the same vein, and a tangential post targeting the republican gimmickry, both this afternoon…
maybe theyre looking for a new message..
This is essentially what the Gann Initiative did in California by tying the hands of legislators in terms of revenue. What happened was predictable in that we ran up deficits galore because a super majority was needed to pass any new tax increases or laws. The balanced budget amendment treats macro economics like it is micro economics. Where are the macro professors out there that can get on the media and explain to people just how absurd this idea is in reality? First of all, we do not have the luxury of knowing how much revenue we take in every year. We don’t even know how much spending is going to occur as well, only estimates. The figure of 18% was taken out of a hat apparently, it is meaningless without a bottoms up approach. No mention of the defense budget either. The GOP has lost any sense of rationality in their ideological purity crusades. The bottom line is that if we want a civilized nation, we are going to have to pay for it.
Yeah, Woolley, I should have made the point that a balanced budget amendment would have caused us to lose WWII. What were the budget deficits in fiscal 1941 through ‘46?
And you’re spot-on that California is the poster example of what happens when the grand combo of balanced-budget constitutional mandates and super-majorities-to-raise-taxes actually becomes law. Which is one important reason why California is such a deep-blue state now.
I think there’s about to be a real backlash among intelligent, sophisticated conservatives who now want some thoughtful, intelligent Republicans to gain control of the policy agenda, rjs. I think voices of that sort will soon become much more prominent.
Here’s a good article on 2012 Q4 earnings outlook.
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Woolley—great parallel with California. I also agree with you that too many conservatives are treating macroeconomics like microeconomics. They are viewing our aggregate economy like it is a household.
A balanced budget amendment would be catastrophic. Do you have any information on how many credible economists support such an amendment? I remember years back when a number of prominent economists—led by Robert Heilbroner, I believe—came out very publicly in opposition to exactly this proposal.
Oh, how I wish he WOULD run with the ball. But he’s dropped the damn thing so many times before, I just won’t believe it unless/until I see it.
“But he’s dropped the damn thing so many times before…”
Yeah, and yet he’s suppose to be pretty good with the basket ball. Go figure. 🙂
Ah. If only I could actually understand graphs, without having to stare at them for ten minutes or so first, Nitu. But I don’t have to understand the graph posted at that url to know that corporate earnings are TANKING. I know that because I already read David Brooks’s column today, and he says that Obama should propose a cut in corporate tax rates, because corporations need to have money to use for INVESTMENTS. And of course Brooks wouldn’t say that unless corporate taxes ARE tanking and corporations, well, just can’t afford to invest. They need further tax breaks in order to have the money to do that!
(And, pleeeeease: No one post that aggregate U.S. corporate profits are at all-time highs and that corporations are HOARDING their profits rather than using them to invest. I know that. My comment is facetious.)
ha! doesnt it suck that you cant even make a facetious comment without explaining it?
Damn. That sentence that’s hard to follow in my response to nitu SHOULD say, “… unless corporate taxes ARE tanking ….”
Although now that I think about it ….
Yep, I think that was a Freudian slip.
well, one never knows how stupid these guys are.
but the sad fact is that what they are saying is what the people believe. and that will make the people vote for them… at least some of them.
the problem comes when they get elected and they have to pretend to keep on believing it..
but i believe if you look at the presidencies since carter you will see that the deficit has gone up in every Republican administration, and down in the Democrats…. present Bi Partisan President not included.
coberly…real per capita growth in government expenditures under recent presidents..