Evil Republican spending cuts, in contrast, would deny the economy needed stimulus and wreak havoc on ordinary people.
But the facts undermine the storyline. Veronique de Rugy of the Mercatus Center at George Mason University took a look at what “austerity” in Europe actually means.
What she found is that government spending has increased or not appreciably declined in Britain, France, Italy, Spain and Germany. The only significant spending reductions are in Greece, where the bond market cut off funding.
In the other countries, the big adjustment has been an increase in tax rates. European “austerity” is an attempt to reduce government budget deficits largely by increasing taxes and only to a small extent by reining in spending.
Which, when you come to think about it, is the policy not of House Republicans — who actually passed a budget — but of Barack Obama.
Over the past three years, Obama has pursued the goal of higher tax rates as relentlessly as Captain Ahab pursued the great white whale.
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