In Search of the Dreaded Austerity

To paraphrase Inigo Montoya of Princess Bride: You keep using that word, "austerity." I do not think it means what you think it means.  Defining austerity. My 1976 Webster's Unabridged Dictionary includes this definition of austerity: "lack of luxuries: enforced or extreme economy." If we can believe Wikipedia, "In economics, austerity is a policy of deficit-cutting, lower spending, and a reduction in the amount of benefits and public services provided. Austerity policies are often used by governments to try to reduce their deficit spending while sometimes coupled with increases in taxes to pay back creditors to reduce debt." Austerity is cutting deficits by reducing deficit spending, not raising taxes. If you want to include tax increases in your definition of "austerity," be my guest. But then do not try to hang that word around the necks of conservatives and Republicans. They are not advocating tax increases. Paul Krugman does that. I'm going with this definition: austerity...(Read Full Article)