“Practically speaking,a ceiling that is raised automatically is no ceiling at all. Given that, why not dispense with the pretense? The reason is politics. No Congressman wants to be on the record voting for unlimited debt, yet most are willing to rail against fiscal recklessness while raising the ceiling every time it’s reached. Any Congressman who gives lip service to a balanced budget Amendment but votes to raise the debt ceiling is a hypocrite. No one needs constitutional help to hold the line on the debt right now!
Epic levels of federal red ink and the approach of the 2012 elections have raised the stakes. Despite the newfound urgency, nearly all Democrats and a very large chunk of Republicans argue that failure to raise the ceiling will be tantamount to economic suicide. They argue that such a rash move will cause the U.S. to default on outstanding debt obligations, thereby sending interest rates sharply higher across the board. Higher interest rates they argue would cripple the economy and permanently increase debt service costs. As a result, they predict capping debt now will precipitate a far deeper economic contraction than what we have already seen in the last few years.
Few see the inherent absurdity in the notion that taking on more debt improves the economic health and creditworthiness of the United States.” Read more.
“Why the U.S. Needs to Stop Dodging the Debt Bullet”
Forbes, May 17, 2011.
Image by Salvatore Vuono / FreeDigitalPhotos.net.