Facing Tough Choices: Balancing Fiscal and Social Deficits

Facing Tough Choices: Balancing Fiscal and Social Deficits

Facing Tough Choices: Balancing Fiscal and Social Deficits

Facing Tough Choices: Balancing Fiscal and Social Deficits

Synopsis

A blend of descriptive and prescriptive economics, this survey provides a thorough examination of our current fiscal and monetary policies and problems. With an eye to special interest politics, Eastaugh shows the difficulties in--and the necessity of--surmounting our fiscal, educational, trade, productivity, and health care accessibility deficits.

Excerpt

Cogitate, an old-fashioned word for think, originally meant to "shake up." Hopefully, this book will shake up some preconceptions concerning our struggle with "the deficit." Today America is facing a number of critical financial and social deficits. Our problems are interconnected, and there is no single solution, no "silver bullet" cure. In writing this I have intentionally cast a wide net over seven basic problems: the fiscal deficit (chapter 1; the $4 trillion national debt), tax equity and economic growth issues (chapter 3), the trade deficit (chapter 4), the productivity deficit (chapter 5), the education deficit (chapter 6), and the health care access deficit (chapter 7). The deficits are interrelated; for example, an education deficit in one decade can cause sluggish productivity in future decades. Reducing the federal deficit in one year can help reduce the trade deficit the next year. Our economic cup is 80 percent full; the cup is leaking. We know how to mend it, but do we have the will? The approach taken in this book is essentially positive, presenting 49 basic policy proposals by which America can mend or reduce these multiple deficits.

The root cause for all seven socioeconomic problems revolves around special interest politics, discussed in chapter 2. Special interest politics allowed bankers to urge politicians to deregulate banks and pressure federal bank regulators to go easy on savings and loan (S&L) institutions in financial trouble. The banks were deregulated in 1980 by the Democratic congressional banking committees during President Carter's last year in office. Members of Congress were "money in the bank" for any bank manager furious over scrutiny from federal bank examiners trying to do their job. Congressmen would intervene on a bank's behalf in the name of "harassment." The resulting bailout of S&Ls will cost the taxpayer $350 to $390 billion over three decades and add substantially to our federal deficit. The S&L bailout is the only continuing government program paid for solely by . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.