Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Who's Defaulting?

Andrew Sullivan seems to think the U.S. is on the verge of fiscal default. How likely is this? What would cause it? The failure of Congress to increase the debt ceiling?

The term "default" has come up in several of Sullivan's recent posts, as in unless drastic budget cuts (or tax increases) are enacted to balance the budget right now the country will be in default/in a state of bankruptcy.

This seems a rather drastic and questionable interpretation of the current situation. For one thing, unemployment is still almost 10 percent; Surely this has something to do with our growing deficits. And up till now elites such as Fed Chairman Bernanke have warned Congress of the need to increase the debt limit unconditionally.

But I'll be curious to see if Andrew's invocation of "default" rhetoric will soon find it's way into the mouths and keypads of Media Villagers looking for a rationale to cut "entitlements".

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