Despite Washington coming to grips with the fact that the debt threat is real, policymakers still are not having the debate Americans deserve.
The talk is too often restricted to “shared sacrifice.” This sets up a debate where we are really just arguing over whom to hurt and how best to manage the decline of our nation. It is a framework that accepts permanently higher taxes and bureaucratically determined access to health care as givens.
A better name for this approach is “shared scarcity.” It represents a deeply pessimistic vision for the future of this country — one that would lead us to a diminished future.
The House-passed budget — “The Path to Prosperity” — offers an alternative vision. It is rooted in the recognition that spending discipline and economic growth are the keys to balancing the federal budget.