By Scott Fullwiler
The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) published its long-term deficit and national debt projections last week. These are the projections most widely cited in policy discussions about long-term “sustainability” of the national debt and entitlement programs. In this post I focus on a small but very important part of the report—the CBO’s discussion of the “Consequences of a Large and Growing Debt,” which can be found on pages 13-15. This section can be found in past reports going back several years, and hasn’t change much if it has changed at all during this time. It is also consistent with the thinking of most economists on these issues. As readers of this blog will recognize, the CBO’s analysis is “out of paradigm” in that it is inapplicable to a sovereign, currency-currency issuing government operating under flexible exchange rates such as the US, Japan, Canada, UK, Australia, etc.
By Joe Firestone
This is the concluding post in a four part series on the “Top” reasons why the national debt should matter. In Part One, I considered “Fix the Debt’s” claim that high levels of debt cause high unemployment and argued that this is a false claim. In Part Two, I followed with a review of the historical record from 1930 to the present and showed that it refutes this claim throughout this period, and that there is not even one Administration where the evidence doesn’t contradict “Fix the Debt’s” theory. In Part Three I showed that the other four reasons advanced by “Fix the Debt” also had very little going for them. In this part, I’ll give reasons why the national debt does matter, and why we should fix it without breaking America, or causing people to suffer.
Posted in Joe Firestone
Tagged $60 Trillion Coin, austerity, bernie sanders, CBO, CPC Budget, debt-to-GDP ratio, deficit spending, High Value Platinum Coin Seigniorage, HVPCS, John Conyers, medicare for all, MMT, modern money theory, national debt, Peter G. Peterson, “Fix the Debt”
By Joe Firestone
The Sector Financial Balances Model:
Domestic Private Balance + Domestic Government Balance + Foreign Balance = 0
is an accounting identity that provides a focus for macroeconomic analysis, explanation, and prediction by economists applying the Modern Money Theory (MMT) approach. It leads to a very critical line of thinking about the budget deficit projections produced for our consumption by the Congressional Progressive Caucus (CPC), Congressional Budget Office (CBO), the House, and the Senate. The US has recently had a sharp decline in its balance of trade deficit. It now stands at about 3% of GDP; which means that the rest of the world has a surplus, a balance of +3% of US GDP in its annual trade with the United States. Continue reading
Posted in Joe Firestone
Tagged #PCS, 2013 budgets, CBO, CPC, Fiscal Policy, High Value Platinum Coin Seigniorage, House budget, MMT, paul ryan, Senate budget, Trillion Dollar Coin
By William K. Black
Zane Tankel, a wealthy owner of over 40 Applebee franchises has attracted media attention by denouncing Obamacare and claiming that it will impose such burdensome expenses on him that he will need to fire workers, limit the hours of existing workers so that they are part-time and do not qualify for health insurance coverage, and cancel plans to open new restaurants. The media reaction has understandably focused on the public rage at such a wealthy man throwing his workers under the bus. I write to make a different point. Tankel illustrates some of the reasons why the Congressional Budget Office’s (CBO) projections of a purported U.S. financial crisis arising from the safety net are baseless.
By Doug Bowles (UMKC)
The CBO’s post-election report released a couple of days ago (apparently in support of advancing the prospects for a Grand Bargain, aka the Great Betrayal) is grounded in relatively pessimistic projections with regard to federal deficit and debt growth. (See this powerful critique of CBO’s methodology by Follette and Sheiner) In assessing just how much credibility these projections deserve to be accorded in our policy debate, it might also instructive to remember how wildly optimistic the CBO projections were not so very long ago with regard to complete elimination of the federal debt. Continue reading