Archive for the ‘Deficits, Debt and Taxes’ Category

Read this now: a trenchant oped by Greek finance minister Varoufakis

February 16th, 2015

To me it reads like the correct dosage of mind and heart and as such comes across as both a rational and heartfelt approach to the least harmful/most potentially helpful way forward in resolving the debt/fiscal crisis. I guess some clever austerian could argue that the claim “I’m not using game theory” would fit quite neatly… Read more

The tyranny of averages, “deltas” and the need for some version of zero-based budgeting

February 9th, 2015

I’m trying to finish my book so this post will be briefer than it should be as it’s a weighty topic, but let me scratch out the idea as a marker to return to it. Reading much budget analysis of late, especially regarding spending levels and those unfortunate caps against which appropriators from both side… Read more

The uncertainty around the deficit numbers

February 3rd, 2015

While lots of ink and bits and bytes were spilled yesterday regarding the deficit projections in the President’s new budget, it’s very important to consider the uncertainty around such estimates, especially when you’re talking ten years out in the future. A bump in growth, interest rates, inflation, productivity, health costs, not to mention policy changes… Read more

There’s much to be said about the President’s new budget proposal…

February 2nd, 2015

…and here are some tasty items to get you started: My man Bob Greenstein holds forth here. I take an angle I haven’t seen elsewhere here, though I explicitly admit that I may be nuts. My other man, Paul Van de Water, points out in a tweet some hawkish commentators are neglecting the progress that’s… Read more

The 529 microcosm: a revealing political train wreck re an inefficient tax break

January 28th, 2015

This little train wreck over the White House’s proposal and then retraction of a plan to cut back on a wasteful yet beloved tax benefit is highly instructive. It’s a clear example of how much hot air there is in these fiscal debates, where policy makers and pundits scold everyone within earshot of the need… Read more