When Deficits Really Don’t Matter

Andrew Sullivan —  Apr 18 2012 @ 11:36am

Frum makes the case for moving our rhetorical focus away from "deficits" simpliciter:

The United States does not have a "deficit problem." It has an immediate economic underperformance problem (which depresses revenues) and it has a chronic healthcare overpayment problem (healthcare is the most important driver—at this point you could fairly say the only driver—of U.S. federal spending). Address those two concerns, and you are well on your way to a solution.

Yglesias sees some evidence that Obamacare is helping on that front. Matt O'Brien applies similar thinking to the euro crisis, focusing on Spain:

[J]ust today, the Bundesbank — Germany's national central bank, and the real power behind the ECB — came out and told countries not to worry about growth. Telling a country in a debt crisis like Spain not to worry about growth is like telling man in debt to not worry about finding a job. The most polite way to characterize this advice is "delusional."

And, in the end, it might foster deeper division and resentment in Europe than we have seen in decades.