Today the Western world is divided between two visions of our economic future. One vision is of austerity and the other is of growth. One is of hope and possibility, the other of despair and cynicism. The battle between these two visions has divided the United States and the entire Western world.
And both of them can be found in in President Obama latest budget.
It's almost as if the President decided that if the Republicans can't provide him with a challenger worthy of this debate, he'll conduct it with himself.
In one vision, the excesses and errors of the 1 percent have left the Western world too broke to fulfill its social contract with anyone but the wealthiest among us. Middle class and lower-income citizens must be abandoned to face a future of ever-dwindling resources. Government's only permissible spending is on wasteful military systems that enrich wealthy contractors and their corporations.
In the other vision, government retains its role as an engine of growth and change. It's wise enough to invest in long-term expansion before pivoting to address its deficit problems. It manages its budget, not "like a family," but like a business - one that understands that well-timed investment is the key to continued growth and prosperity, In today's world, that means investing in jobs, research, education, health, and infrastructure.
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