Spending Isn’t The Only Problem

Andrew Sullivan —  Jul 22 2011 @ 4:42pm

After some drama over whether letting the Bush tax cuts expire would violate the anti-tax pledge he makes politicans sign, Norquist Grover takes to the Grey Lady to make his case. He won't back down on the larger principle:

Advocates of larger government prefer to talk about deficits rather than spending. Why? Because there are two solutions to a deficit problem: spend less or raise taxes. The issue, in other words, isn’t the pledge; it’s Washington’s inability to deal with its own overspending. There is only one fix for a spending problem: spend less.

Friedersdorf fillets him:

What Norquist doesn't understand or won't admit is that deficit spending is worse than a tax increase, because you've got to pay for it eventually anyway, with interest. Meanwhile, you've created in the public mind the illusion that the level of government services they're consuming is cheaper and less burdensome than is in fact the case. If you hold the line on taxes but not the deficit, you're making big government more palatable.