Last night, I watched The History Channel. (Yes, economists do watch The History Channel but only because there is no Economics Channel.) The show was about the Third Reich and showed the suffering of ordinary people. Not to be disrespectful, but it also showed their inconvenience. They had shortages of consumer goods and electricity. They even had tax increases.
It reminded me of an evening a year or two ago, when one of my dearest friends and “forever clients” was sitting on my couch, lamenting the fact there was so little she could do for our warriors in Afghanistan and Iraq. A patriot, she wanted to suffer at least some inconvenience in their behalf. Instead, the President told her to go to Disney World and then gave her two tax cuts. While the President’s instinct was to protect the status quo, he ignored the nobility of her emotion.
I think of her comments often. We are still a great people, and we deserve better government than we have. This lady would have taken a tax increase, a Social Security decrease, a Medicare decrease or whatever for her country.
Unlike Glen Beck, I have not given up on Americans. We are still a great people and will rise to meet the occassion. When austerity comes to America, there will, of course, be some riots, like the ones we’re seeing in Greece and Ireland now, but we will handle it better than our politicians think. Bring it on!