Tag Archives: Budget crisis

The high cost of budgetary paralysis

By Alice M. Rivlin – It is both frightening and embarrassing that the world’s most experienced democracy is currently unable to carry out even the basic responsibility of funding the services that Americans are expecting from their government in the current fiscal year.

Limping from one short-term continuing resolution to another, combining individual appropriations bills into unwieldy omnibus bills that no one is able to study or even read, and threatening to close the government (or default on the debt) if certain conditions are not met are all symptoms of a deeply broken decision-making process.

The costs of budgetary dysfunction are high and rising, although not easy to quantify. Federal agencies, including the Department of Defense, cannot make plans that enable them to spend money efficiently.

The most worrisome cost of the Congress’s seemingly-endless wrangling over near-term federal funding is that it crowds out serious discussions of the daunting longer-term challenges that face the nation’s economy. more>

“Fiscal cliff” talks turn sour, Obama threatens veto

By Matt Spetalnick and Mark Felsenthal – Talks to avoid a U.S. fiscal crisis stalled on Wednesday (Dec 19) as President Barack Obama accused opponents of holding a personal grudge against him while the top Republican negotiator called the president “irrational.”

“It is very hard for them to say yes to me,” he told a news conference in the White House. “At some point, you know, they’ve got to take me out of it.”

The rise in tensions threatens to unravel significant progress made over the last week. more> http://tinyurl.com/corv5bl