Paul Krugman Battles ‘Beltway Deficit Feedback Loop,’ And Not By Himself: via HuffPost

Paul Krugman Battles ‘Beltway Deficit Feedback Loop,’ And Not By Himself: via HuffPost http://huff.to/11y9HDE There is actually a cheap, elegant solution to America’s age demographic problem, it just goes against Republican ideology. Engineer immigration to smooth out the demographic curve. It would mean greatly increasing immigration but it will solve the problem of the rest of the population supporting a disproportionate number of old people. I expect boomers will seek reforms on suicide and end of life laws generally. Turning old people into essentially prisoners of the state with no control over their own destiny and no means to end their suffering will become increasingly unsustainable, both morally and fiscally. The penalty for getting old is worse in most cases than the penalty for murder. Decades of suffering in some facility as a de facto prisoner, incapable of being out and about, faced with endless health problems and eventual dementia. If somebody wants that for himself so be it, but I doubt that most of the baby boomers will want that. I expect we will have that debate long before social security for example begins to run into trouble. We also need to consider that bipartisan planners from years ago were aware of the demographic issue and made preparations for it. Meanwhile the right wing ignores the role of the military in the financial crises or the role of “deregulation” of the financial and other sectors. “Reverse regulation” would probably be a better description. They get to gamble with depositors’ money and the ultimate backing of the government and keeep the profit if they win but don’t get stuck with the loss when they lose big. That isn’t deregulation, that is providing huge incentives to engage in reckless, irresponsible behavior. It’s reverse regulation, rewarding bad behavior. Quite apart from the economic debate there are some really simple ways of handling the economic situation: Do things that make sense, like increasing targeted immigration, quit doing things that are f**king stupid like excessive military funding and conquests half way around the world and providing incentives for corporations to destroy the economy, and the real or perceived economic crises melt away without us having to make a single hard decision.

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