Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Live Blogging the Debate: How do you do cut marginal tax raes without raising the deficit?

President Obama asks.

Romney, accusing Obama of chicanery, responds "I won't implement any tax break that adds to the deficit" because he will close deductibles and loopholes to make up the revenue.* Obama parries with "math, common sense, and history" saying you cannot cut taxes, increase spending and not add to the deficit (in a word, yes).

Dr. Lydgate would like to ask, why won't we just 1. cut taxes 2. add spending 3. and, you know, add to the deficit but he doesn't exactly have a seat at the table.


*Romney's tax plan, in which he lowers taxes, and raises taxes, for a net wash, is an application of the bizarre conception common among economists that people will work more if they earn a slightly higher percent of earnings regardless of their overall wealth level (I think). This, of course, completely ignores the aggregate demand gap that at is the heart of our economic malaise that very much will be negatively impacted by closing loopholes.


**A few minutes later, Romney goes on a strange speech against deficit spending in which he insists it is a moral issue, invokes the burden on our children (no mention of grand-children yet) and proposes a "Is this worth borrowing from China to pay for?" criteria for every federal government program, including PBS, something that has no basis in reality, but never mind that. Obama, of course, responds with his plan to cut spending and raise taxes to close the deficit.

 Will the entire night pass without anyone asking if cutting the deficit is an unquestionable necessity?

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