No Panaceas

Wednesday, March 17, 2004
Speaking of the national debt: I like to check this site on occasion. It's an effective way to make me pessimistic about my child's economic future. Today's number is $7,121,028,831,834. By my rough and ready calculations that is enough stacked dollar bills to circle the globe at the equater about one and three-quarters times. (What a completely useless piece of information.) Almost as useless is the information that every citizen currently owes $24,257.35. If every citizen really owed that much then Congress would balance the budget in no time. The better question is how much of the income of citizens under the age of, say, thirty go towards the gigantic and growing debt?

Balanced Budget? We don't need no stinking balanced budget or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the National Debt :

From's daily update:

The House Budget Committee today approved a budget enforcement bill that
would establish discretionary spending caps and revive pay-as-you-go rules
to limit mandatory spending. But tax cuts would not require offsets. The
enforcement bill was approved by voice vote after members turned back,
18-24, a Democratic amendment that would have required offsets for both
tax cuts and new entitlement spending. Even Republicans who were not
satisfied with the bill, such as Christopher Shays of Connecticut and Gil
Gutknecht of Minnesota, joined with Chairman Jim Nussle, R-Iowa, to beat
back the Democratic bid. "What you're doing is ignoring the elephant in
the room. Two-thirds of the [deficit] problem is in the tax cuts," said
John M. Spratt Jr., D-S.C. "This is a dodge." Nussle countered that tax
reductions can stimulate economic growth. "We don't believe you should
have to pay for tax cuts," he said. The panel now is debating amendments
to its fiscal 2005 budget resolution, which is expected to win approval
later today.

Forget banning gay marriage, how about some movement on the Balanced Budget Amendment.

Monday, March 15, 2004
March Lameness Returns: It's time once again to crown a mythical national champion of college basketball. I won't go through the whole exercise again this year. Here and here are my reasons why March Madness is a no more useful way to choose a champion than polling.

Oh, and my Final Four picks this year are Duke, UConn, Georgia Tech, and Oklahoma State with Duke beating GT for the MNC.