Aug 11, 2021Liked by Aaron Bergman

I'd had thoughts along these lines in my head before, but this is the first time I've seen them written out. Thanks!

One slight issue that is missed is that there are definitely going to be real costs associated with the rearrangement of resources. If we want society to have more health care, some currently unemployed workers will have to train as doctors to take care of the patients. (If we just want the health care to be centrally funded though, no new resources are getting used, just the costs for health care are going through the government instead of through insurance companies.)

Expand full comment

"every dollar we borrow now is a dollar that our children can’t use for themselves. Even more, it’s a negative-sum trade since we have to pay interest on top of the principle we borrow."

Principal, not principle.

It's not necessarily negative-sum, since there might be an investment that only the government can make, which costs $1.0B today and pays off $1.2B in ten years at the cost of $1.1B in future dollars. (But generally government spending is less socially beneficial than private spending.)

To me, the most compelling argument in favor of deficit spending is that it's a transfer of wealth from future Americans to present Americans, and future Americans will (probably) be wealthier than present Americans due to technological progress and economic growth, so they are sort of a form of progressive taxation / wealth redistribution.

Expand full comment