Deficit Reduction? Excuses, Excuses

THE RETURN OF ROSS PEROT HAS BROUGHT THE FEDERAL budget deficit, like an unwelcome guest, back to the center of national debate. Perot, whatever his defects, has offered a credible plan for balancing the budget over five years. The general reaction from the economic graybeards has been: fine idea, but now's not the time. To slam on the fiscal brakes in the midst of a recession, or a shaky recovery, or whatever the heck we're in, would be suicidal. Partisans of the other two candidates have grasped this argument as a defense of their considerably more modest deficit-reduction proposals.

Well, as...

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