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Letter: Politics should not decide approach with deficit

To the editor, 

Politics should not decide how to deal with the federal deficit. Politicians have a way of confusing the issues with their own agendas. There are practical solutions that don't include slashing programs and raising taxes in the short term. 

The problem with making cuts in the short term is that it will weaken the economy. Greece is a good example of what happens when you make cuts during a recession.  It made their economic situation worse, not better. The Great Depression is another example to look to on how to recover from a depression or recession. The short term debt during the recovery from the depression was quite high. You have to pump money into the system to create jobs in the beginning. But that turned around once jobs were created and the economy got back on track. We need to focus on job creation right now, rather than making cuts and raising taxes. If having a balanced budget is a sticking point between the parties (debt ceiling debate in mind) then why not use economic indicators to decide when to raise taxes and cut programs? 

Say when unemployment is six percent and economic growth is at three percent. Once we reach that point, then make the cuts.  These aren't accurate numbers, but the principle is there. Our long term debt is the problem. Most of it is health care and senior managed care costs. So to sum it up, we need to have a strong economy to start, which in the short term will cost more, and after that is established, we need to make cuts, raise taxes and figure out how to reduce health care costs. I don't know all the details, but at least one leading national economist recommends something along these lines to strengthen the economy and manage the national debt. Economists are more qualified to make the judgment than politicians. So why are politicians not listening to them? 

Debbie Jahnke