The Federal Fiscal Horse Runs Uphill, but Not Downhill

Funny, isn’t it? When federal spending was accelerating like a race horse bolting out of a burning barn in FY 2008 and FY 2009, Congress did not encounter any insuperable problems in appropriating the huge amounts of additional funds (and running up the public debt rapidly to pay for its sudden extravagance), but now that Congress is being called on to trim its planned additional spending by a tiny amount, the horse can’t even get out of the starting gate. I’d name this horse “Ratchet Effect” and bet serious money on him at the fiscal track.

Robert Higgs is Senior Fellow in Political Economy at the Independent Institute, author or editor of over fourteen Independent books, and Editor at Large of Independent’s quarterly journal The Independent Review.
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