From Kent Conrad’s opening remarks at the deficit reduction panel formed by President Obama:
Rising federal debt is like a tsunami that could swamp the country at any moment…Our economic strength and security is on the line. Now is the time to act. And we need everyone, Democrats and Republicans, working together on a solution.
After pointing out that Senator Conrad doesn’t mind fueling the “tsunami” of federal debt by supporting ag subsidies, entitlement expansions, a $2.6 trillion health care bill and a federal budget that includes massive spending, deficits and debt, Cato’s Tad DeHaven says that it’s maybe time for people like Senator Conrad to stop talking about debt and deficits and, you know, actually do something about it.
The politicians with the most power in Washington are precisely the ones pretending that they are powerless to steer the nation away from a looming fiscal disaster. Their claims are total, utter, complete nonsense. Both Obama and Conrad could have proposed budgets this year that actually cut spending to reduce the deficit. Both chose not to. They are the ones fueling the “tsunami.” They are the ones who don’t have the guts to cut off this generation’s subsidy recipients for the sake of the next generation. It’s that simple.
It’s been pretty clear to me from the get-go that this panel is all about political cover. Senator Conrad, as well as any other member of Congress, could submit bills to reduce the deficit right now. And they could be passed using the very same budget reconciliation process the Democrats just used (fraudulently) to pass the health care bill.
But people like Senator Conrad do no such thing. Because they’d much rather sit around and talk about the problem, and then eventually just raise our taxes some more.