July 24, 2020

Beware of Biden’s Budget Blowout

The immediate and long-term fiscal damage of a Biden presidency is hard to fathom.

With bailouts, handouts, and assorted other “outs” seemingly chief among our federal government’s priorities, very little attention has been paid to the few deficit hawks who still remain. You can recognize them by the way they cringe at the thought of an economic package exceeding $1 trillion.

To hear “progressives” like Bernie Sanders tell it, though, these exorbitant sums are just a down payment for what’s to come. Despite not being the Democrats’ presidential nominee, it’s the Sanders crew that’s running the policy show for Joe Biden’s campaign. Once considered to be the kindly old “moderate” in the field, Uncle Joe is now poised to put to shame the “fundamentally transforming” efforts of his former boss. Think of his new policy prescriptions as “hope and change” on steroids.

Back on Tuesday, our own Lewis Morris outlined the potential policies of a Democrat trifecta should Biden win the White House and have the coattails to keep the House and flip the Senate. As the campaign wears on and the promises add up, it’s becoming clear that Biden’s budget-busting pledges will almost certainly tack at least an extra trillion dollars a year onto our nation’s federal spending. Part of that is his ridiculous $2 trillion version of the Green New Deal.

Biden’s $10 trillion wish list would be partially “paid for” with $4 trillion in tax hikes. Translation: Say goodbye to the Republican tax cuts.

But those trillions are just part of Biden’s vow to “rewrite” the economy. “We’re going to have a breathtaking opportunity to create good-paying union jobs,” Biden told a meeting of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers earlier this month, as well as “to rewrite our economy so that prosperity flows not just to CEOs, but to workers who actually build the country.” (Billionaire socialist Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos was likely smirking at this.) Unfortunately, there aren’t enough workers out there to make good on the lavish promises being handed out by Biden and company. If anything, we’ll likely be dealing with the rampant inflation and “misery index” made famous by an earlier Democrat president, Jimmy Carter.

Another worrisome byproduct of our massive deficit spending on the coronavirus and its economic effects is the expectation that bigger benefits from Uncle Sam will become the rule rather than the rare exception. Already, there is pressure to extend the government’s enhanced unemployment benefits beyond their original expiration date of July 31, not to mention the prospect of a second stimulus payment.

Seeing that the congressional discussion has shifted to the size of an extension rather than the merits of the program itself, we seem to have taken a sizable step toward the cherished far-left promise of a universal basic income. Clearly, the doling out of an extra $600 a week above and beyond the standard unemployment check has disincentivized folks from going back to work. After all, why return to the 9-to-5 grind when the government will pay us $15 an hour to play video games and watch TikTok videos? For many, the giveaway has a narcotic appeal.

If we choose unwisely on November 3, it’s a sure bet that the Biden-and-Bernie binge will break the bank — as well as the back of what’s left of our economy.

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