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Cognitive dissonance

By William E. Spriggs

Guest commentator

 

The U.S. Department of Treasury has announced that the deficit for 2013 was $680 billion (which is about $200 billion less than projected back in February). It has been falling since 2009 at the fastest rate on record since the demobilization of World War II. But, somehow, tea party Republicans have succeeded in getting the Washington media elite and the president to continue focusing on the deficit. What continues to be overlooked is that the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) also produced an estimate that the gap between current GDP (the value of all goods and services in the country) and where CBO estimates GDP would be if the unemployment rate was six percent instead of around seven percent was $439 billion. The Washington elite, who have been absorbed by discussions of long-term budget projections since the mid-1990s, cannot come to grips with the current crisis’ impact on the economy. Continue Reading →

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