|$17 trillion debt bomb|
After more than two years of constant crisis, the emerging agreement amounts to little more than a cease-fire. Republicans and Democrats are abandoning their debt-reduction goals, laying down arms and, for the moment, trying to avoid another economy-damaging standoff.
The campaign to control the debt is ending “with a whimper, not a bang,” said Robert Bixby, executive director of the bipartisan Concord Coalition, which advocates debt reduction. “That this can be declared a victory is an indicator of how low the process has sunk. They haven’t really done anything except avoid another crisis.”
|Budget negotiators Paul Ryan and Patty Murray|
And no doubt Dear President will sign the budget bill, offering encomiums to the, you scratch my back and I'll scratch yours, negotiators who avoided tough battles and difficult decisions.
All to avoid "another crisis"? If anyone bothered to notice the economy didn't even hiccup in October despite the extended government shut down.
The Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia has released the coincident indexes for the 50 states for October 2013. In the past month, the indexes increased in 44 states, decreased in four states, and remained stable in two, for a one-month diffusion index of 80. Over the past three months, the indexes increased in 45 states and decreased in five, for a three-month diffusion index of 80. For comparison purposes, the Philadelphia Fed has also developed a similar coincident index for the entire United States. The Philadelphia Fed’s U.S. index rose 0.2 percent in October and 0.7 percent over the past three months.