…so, let’s tweak them a bit to sustain them longer so I can be re-elected.” (Obama’s appearance on Facebook is another good reason not to Facebook, but that’s a different story.)
Okay, that’s not what he really said. But that is what he really meant. Fiscal reform that doesn’t include entitlement reform is simply not serious. “Unsustainable”, if you will.
The US has got itself in a bind. It shot its load rescuing its economy from a bunch of bankers, and now can’t seem to find a way to back off from the “rescue”.
But there is pain on the horizon. The question is not if, but when and for whom, the economic pain will strike first and/or hardest. All the politicking over the budget is just bickering over who will be the economic cannon fodder. It’s the problem of spiraling collectivism. Once everyone is a ward of the State, then the only thing left to fight over is who gets the most from the State, or suffers the least when it experiences misfortune.
Any idea of man that requires individual responsibility for one’s welfare has been completely abandoned in a conspiracy of abnegation between the State and the individual. Individuals have bargained away to the State their freedom as individual economic actors, in return for which the State has pledged to provide for them. But there is no court in which to claim damages if the State can’t meet its end of the bargain.
Which will soon enough happen. What then? All the bickering over who is to be economic cannon fodder will seem whimsical and silly as the hordes of infantry sweep past the front lines of solvency. It will be painful to watch, even more so to experience. How it is that Timothy Geithner can proclaim the US will never default on its obligations is beyond me.
It appears that Obama doesn’t even understand the difference between a deficit and the debt:
We face a critical time where we are going to have to make some decisions — how do we bring down the debt in the short term, and how do we bring down the debt over the long term?
Nothing that he proposes does either. Debt continues to climb throughout. Annual deficits may decrease somewhat, but the only way to bring down debt is to run surpluses, and Obama’s budget is not expected to ever balance, let alone spend less than is collected. Obama’s appearance on Facebook to sell his budget, if it could be called that, is just another waypoint on a long slog down.