Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Financial ruin? Or is someone listening?

From the Courant's editorial board:

Who can blame David M. Walker for resigning as comptroller general and head of the federal Government Accountability Office with more than five years left of his 15-year term?

I can't. He poured his heart into convincing Beltway Insiders that America is headed for financial ruin due to our borrow n spend fiscal policy.

Mr. Walker believes that the retirement of the baby boom generation — a phenomenon he calls a "demographic tsunami that will never recede" — will incur Medicare and Social Security costs that will drive the national debt from its current $11 trillion to an additional $50 trillion in the next 20 years. That amounts to about $440,000 of debt per American household, he says.

So put me into the Walker Camp of political thinking...

Mr. Walker rightly wants presidential candidates to pay attention. "If [the candidates] don't make the debt one of their top three priorities, in my opinion, they don't deserve to be president and we can't afford for them to be president," he said last year. So far, with promises of more tax cuts and more spending, the candidates don't seem to be listening.

And FWIW, Ron Paul had the national debt among (what I saw as) his top three priorities:

1) Enforcing the US Constitution
2) Improved monetary policy - return to the gold standard... the cost of oil is stable in terms of gold... it's the US dollar that's lost value
3) Improved fiscal policy - cut spending... and balance the budget

And that's a big part of why I supported Ron Paul... and why I've asked the same question of the three CT-5 hopefuls (state Senator Dave Cappiello, US Congressman Chris Murphy and former state Rep. Tony Nania):

What do you plan to do about this "demographic tsunami that will never recede?"

Finally, if you'd like to learn more about the foundation from where David Walker will be advocating a sane fiscal policy, click here to find the Peter G Peterson Foundation.

Tim White

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