Remember back in those halcyon days of 1995 when the Newt Gingrich and the Republicans were pushing for a Balanced Budget Amendment to the Constitution along with their Contract with America? Oh for those days.
A new cry for a balanced budget amendment needs to be on the lips of all who value economic freedom and loath its current erosion. This should be the central tenet to Republican efforts for 2010. By then, the deleterious effects of the $800+ Billion “stimulus”, and other extravagances, will be on full and naked display. The American people should never again be used as human experiments for economic theories of such grand scale that have so little empirical evidence.
This experimentation gathers its support through demagoguery alone, because the ideas of Keynes are far too arcane for the average voter to understand. This experimentation by our President abuses the trust of his own supporters by wagering such enormous sums on a dogmatic gamble. If it fails, the massive increase in debt will threaten the creditworthiness of the United States; a frightening scenario our economy has never had to face before. Few times, if ever, before has such reckless abandonment of deliberation and reason been eschewed for hand waving and threadbare excuses. Risking the entire economy on a moment of political expediency must never be repeated.
A Balanced Budget Amendment will force Congress and future Presidents to make tradeoffs in their priorities. Either they raise spending AND taxes, or they cut taxes AND spending. As demonstrated so clearly during the administration of George W. Bush, tax cuts with deficits do not lead to spending cuts. The old arguments against this amendment fail. With the sole exception of declared war, all future governments must be prevented from passing off financial responsibility to future generations.
Any candidate who espouses such an Amendment will have my vote and the support of this blog.