Tuesday, 18 November 2008

USA : 18th November Joseph E. Stiglitz and the Bush Legacy

The Seven Deadly Deficits. Joseph E. Stiglitz, Mother Jones (en)
" ... George W. Bush assumed office, most of those disgruntled about the stolen election contented themselves with this thought: Given our system of checks and balances, given the gridlock in Washington, how much damage could be done? Now we know: far more than the worst pessimists could have imagined ... behind those losses lie even greater missed opportunities ...
... the trade deficit: Over the past decade, the nation has been borrowing massively abroad—some $739 billion in 2007 alone. And it is easy to see why: With the government running up huge debts, and with Americans' household savings close to zero, there was nowhere else to turn. America has been living on borrowed money and borrowed time, and the day of reckoning had to come. We used to lecture others about what good economic policy meant ...
... The laws of nature and the laws of economics are unforgiving. We can abuse our environment, but only for a while. We can spend beyond our means, but only for a while. We can free ride on the investments made in the past, but only for a while. Even the richest country in the world ignores the laws of nature and the laws of economics at its peril ..."

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