Veronique de Rugy Discusses the Truth About Deficits and the Debt

Posted: April 3, 2011 in debt, deficits, economy, fact, reason, reason foundation, reason magazine, reason.tv

Poll after poll reveals that debt and deficits have become defining issues in American politics. But while these issues are indeed important and the American people are justifiably concerned about the level of debt our nation is racking up, they are only symptoms of the real problem: overspending. America is living beyond its means and is projected to continue doing so into the foreseeable future. In her weekly appearance on Bloomberg TV, Reason columnist and Mercatus Center economist Veronique de Rugy explains the truth about deficits and the debt.

Myth 1: Debt and deficits are a disease that can only be cured by raising taxes.

Fact 1: Debt and deficits are only a symptom. The disease is overspending. And tax increases are no cure. Besides, even if we could balance the budget by raising taxes it wouldn’t stay balanced so long as programs like Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid remain unreformed.

Myth 2: There is no relationship between high interest rates and deficits. And even if there was, interest rates remain at all-time lows.

Fact 2: That may have been true once, but the data now shows that investors anticipate an increase in both interest rates and deficits.

Myth 3: Debt and deficits may be a problem, but we don’t have to fix it now.

Fact 3: Debt and deficits are having an immediate negative impact on the economy.

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