Monday, July 25, 2011

Update to my point of view on a balanced budget amendment

It has come to my attention that the use of this letter (From my previous post on 7-20) might not be having the effect I planned.  I hoped that using material from a left leaning source would help show the commonality between our points of view.   As I wrote this I assumed that most readers would understand the natural aversion to changing the Constitution that any Constitutionalists would have.  I understood that many of the economists who wrote this letter lean to the left, I figured it would show both sides of the argument which agree, but what I failed to calculate was the mass support such an amendment would have.  If your reading my blog you probably lean to the right and should realize I do as well.  I'd like to believe you don't support a balanced budget amendment just because some leftist economists disagree with the idea.  I don't make a habit of supporting something just because the left is against it. There are many reasons why I hold the view I do, some of the reasons coincide with the views of these economists and some do not.

I personally believe in a free market economic system which takes controls away the Federal Government.  This means in my personal view anything that puts more control on the economy is a bad idea.  Murry Rothbard once wrote, "balancing the budget by increasing taxes is like curing influenza by shooting the patient."  A balanced budget amendment would allow the Federal Government to use tax hikes to do just that.  He also agreed with one of my earlier points.  He believed a major flaw was treating "the budget" as a constitutional entity which would increase the tendency of the government to spend money on off book items that don't get included in official expenses.  There are all kinds of games that can be played depending on how such an amendment is written.  Do we really want to take the chance right now with the current climate?  My last aversion but certainly not least in my mind is the fact that spending is our problem. 


Why people can't understand this is beyond me.   


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