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Home Publications Blogs Beat the Press They Are "Taming the Debt" Again at the Washington Post

They Are "Taming the Debt" Again at the Washington Post

Friday, 09 August 2013 07:13

The Washington Post had yet another news article with cheerleading for cuts to Social Security and Medicare. The piece told readers about the bad news that a number of experienced Republican congressional staffers were leaving their jobs, telling readers:

"Moreover, many observers worry that the exodus is an ominous sign that Republicans see low odds for significant progress toward taming the debt."

Of course many observers who are more concerned about promoting economic growth and reducing unemployment than arbitrary debt and deficit numbers would see this exodus as good news. Also, people who recognize that most seniors have little extra spending money will be pleased to see that the prospect of cuts to Social Security and Medicare may be fading. (The article seems to bemoan the fact that much of the decline in projected deficits is due to better growth and slower projected growth in health care costs rather than budget cuts.)

Perhaps the Post will have more balanced budget reporting once Bezos begins to restructure the paper.

Comments (10)Add Comment
The Amazin' WP
written by Cranky post-mature dude, August 09, 2013 7:54
Yeah, maybe Bezos will require the WP to hire actual journalists to write and edit their articles, instead of rhetoricians writing copy for old money.

In this particular article, the main thing that is obvious is that the writer has a very limited social and professional circle,fails to recognize this, and, worse, allows (perhaps willfully) his/her reporting to fall into commentary; that's an F in journalism. But the editor failed to catch it too. Another F. No wonder circulation is down: the crew (and hence the captain(s)) of the ship are incompetent.
Low Interest Rates
written by Tyler Healey, August 09, 2013 8:20
People who recognize that most seniors have little extra spending money are not pleased to see low interest rates.

Warren Mosler: "Since the [federal] government is a net payer of interest, lower [interest] rates reduce spending, thereby increasing fiscal drag."
Republicans Exit Burning Building While Sending Fire Department to Wrong Location
written by Last Mover, August 09, 2013 9:29

What a shameless charade. Consider the obvious contradiction in this example:

“Even these people who have been able to thread the needle are exhausted and do not want to be part of a breakdown.”

In addition to losing Kumar, McConnell has lost his longtime floor general, Dave Schiappa, who left after nearly three decades to take a job as vice president at the Duberstein Group, a downtown lobbying firm.

So Republicans see the departure of their seasoned deal closers in legal graft and corruption as an ominous sign that the debt can't be tamed?

So the dealers walk through the revolving door where they don't try to tame the debt anymore?

Like flaming the fear of debt is not their bread and butter on both sides and without that fear they and their elected or lobby bosses may not even have a job?

What's the next step to show their dedication to taming the debt. Self immolation by the arsonists they hire to start these fires?
And still no hint
written by Joe, August 09, 2013 9:47
and still no hint of understanding from dean or wapo that the "national debt" doesn't necessarily get paid back. In order for the non-govt sector to run a surplus the govt has to run an equal deficit. The national debt is nothing other than non-govt net savings. Losing hope of taming National Net Savings?

It's just too simple for most people to understand.
Seniors with little spending money don't get interest
written by Dean, August 09, 2013 10:39
The seniors who are hurt by low interest rates are pretty high up in the income distribution. Do the math -- if you have $10k and the interest rate is 2 percentage points lower, you lost $200 a year. That's unfortunate, but not too deadly. If you lost much more than this, then you're better off than 90 percent of seniors.

The fact that the government is a not payer of interest does not mean lower interest is contractionary. Big difference between who pays and who gets interest. Bill Gates will not spend much of his incremental interest income. Lots of people who save money from refi will. And, the capital gains on bonds are also expansionary.

So anyone working from first principles on this one needs to do more homework.
Tame the local pensions works the same way as tame the debt
written by JaaaaayCeeeee, August 09, 2013 12:40

As corporate news media fear mongers, they push solutions that allow Republican governors to demand a city reduce income taxes, and then stop revenue sharing.
Back on the Beat
written by Bart, August 09, 2013 12:49

At the Post, Lori is back and on script.
Low Interest Rates Reduce The Federal Budget Deficit
written by Tyler, August 09, 2013 3:16
"Low interest rates [reduce] the federal [budget] deficit [and reducing] the [federal budget] deficit is recessionary."

- Rodger Malcolm Mitchell, "Low interest rates: The sneak tax on you."
written by TK421, August 10, 2013 3:37
I won't consider Social Security safe untilPresident Obama leaves his job.
written by Chris Engel, August 11, 2013 12:47
We need to tame the Washington Post. A tranquillizer ought to do just fine.

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About Beat the Press

Dean Baker is co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research in Washington, D.C. He is the author of several books, his latest being The End of Loser Liberalism: Making Markets Progressive. Read more about Dean.