Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Reminder: Failure to raise the debt ceiling will NOT produce a default.

From pssvr at Reddit:

There has been a lot of repetition of the meme lately that either Congress and the President will agree to raise the debt ceiling by August 2nd, or the U.S. will default. This is flatly untrue. U.S. revenues are more than high enough to cover interest on the outstanding debt. In fact they are more than high enough to cover both interest on the outstanding and Social Security payments, contrary to what President Obama has indicated.

What will happen if the debt ceiling is not raised by August 2nd is that the U.S. will cease to be able to go deeper into debt, and thus outlays will become equal to revenues in approximately real-time. That means cuts will have to made, somewhere. But there is no reason to believe those cuts would have to be in Social Security or in interest on the outstanding debt, unless the administration chooses to make it this way. The cuts could just as easily come from the military, or the DHS, or Medicare, or whatever. This is a decision politicians will have to make, but it does not force a default in any sense.

The entire debate is nothing more than an excuse for Boehner and Obama both to look like their jobs are hard and they are actually doing something.

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