dglenn: Me in kilt and poofy shirt, facing away, playing acoustic guitar behind head (Default)
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posted by [personal profile] dglenn at 05:24am on 2017-04-15

"So here's the bottom line, kids. The United States is probably going to go broke during your lifetimes. Actually, it's already broke, but getting deeper into debt allows it to keep running on thin air, like the Road Runner. My advice? Learn Chinese. Start savings accounts. Don't buy what you can't afford. Any politician who tries to win votes by promising to cut taxes is digging our country's grave." -- Roger Ebert, reviewing I.O.U.S.A., 2008-08-21

There are 4 comments on this entry. (Reply.)
selki: (Default)
posted by [personal profile] selki at 02:18pm on 2017-04-15
"Don't buy what you can't afford" -- including college loans! I worry about all the kids building up staggering debt.
herveus: (Default)
posted by [personal profile] herveus at 05:54pm on 2017-04-15
*sigh*

When you can print your own money, it's really hard to "go broke". Of course, the Republican gamesmanship with the debt ceiling was an attempt to do exactly that.

Ebert clearly failed to understand that salient point.

Now, his conclusion has merit, but the premises are dodgy.
dglenn: Me in kilt and poofy shirt, facing away, playing acoustic guitar behind head (Default)
posted by [personal profile] dglenn at 06:27pm on 2017-04-15

"Now, his conclusion has merit, but the premises are dodgy."

Oh, at the very least he has grossly oversimplified a complex system -- including glossing over (or maybe misunderstanding) key features. Like you, I think his conclusion has merit (even though it lacks the nuance reality has, like when it's safer to increase debt than impose austerity). I look at this as his getting part of the answer right -- don't pretend debt is meaningless, don't promise tax cuts that can't really be afforded yet -- but if anyone were to justify fiscal policy solely based on this one argument, I'd complain about black-and-white thinking.

dewline: (Default)
posted by [personal profile] dewline at 02:24am on 2017-04-19
My advice? Don't stop with Chinese. The more languages you're fluent in, the better off you'll be.

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