walkitout (walkitout) wrote,
walkitout
walkitout

A Few Remarks About Shutdown/Debt Limit Coverage

While T. and I were at McDonald's yesterday, I heard a familiar voice and looked up to the TV (I know -- the Maynard McD's has free wifi and a big TV. Wait for it . . .) to notice that Rogoff was on CNN, arguing that reducing the debt too quickly -- austerity -- was not a great idea. Obvs, this is a tough idea for the anchor on CNN and/or whoever is generating her talking points, so she went on for a while about, how can this be true? We've never even _tried_ austerity. Also, belt tightening.

On the one hand, if you're an anchor on TV, you are familiar with going hungry, so I guess she may know a lot about belt tightening. But starving yourself so you meet ridiculous appearance standards for a TV gig is very different from going to school hungry because your family doesn't consistently have enough money for (or isn't there -- because they are already at work -- to make sure you eat) breakfast. So: annoying anchor, yes. And Rogoff is right, but _wow_, this is the guy who put together a dodgy spreadsheet to be published in the non-peer reviewed issue of a journal arguing that OMG WE MUST KEEP DEBT UNDER ARBITRARY X% OR OH NOES, thus leading to our recent experiments with austerity, preventing the recovery from making better progress and leading directly to where we are right now.

Nice that he finally got religion, but really, a day late and a dollar short.

Today's entry in, _this_ is how you're going to fix the trouble you got us into:

http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2013-10-14/documenting-the-harm-from-brinkmanship

An "anti-debt" foundation has put out something about how expensive the shutdown mess is, and how that would be a _really bad idea_ if engaged in repetitively. Because, financially irresponsible. _Duh_. But again, it was all that anti-debt rhetoric which made it so hard to do decent policy post-bust. A day late and a dollar short to say, wow, maybe took it a little too far.

On the one hand, I applaud these efforts to unravel the knot they have created.

On the other hand, I would prefer to just tell them all to go f*ck themselves.
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