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'Global Glue Is Up to Us'

November 09, 1987

The Wall Street crash has apparently gotten our government together on taking steps to reduce the federal deficit. It's a bipartisan effort, executive and legislative. Virtually all of the talk centers on reducing the current budget deficit some $23 billion. A few voices have stated that measures to be taken-- spending cuts and/or taxes--must be of a kind that will result in balanced budgets for future years as well as for the present. I think it's all still "smoke and mirrors."

It does seem fair, and perhaps providential, that Reagan Administration officials have been made to come to grips with these problems now instead of leaving them to future administrations and generations, as they had intended. In the last seven years they have doubled our national debt. Interest on this alone is an enormous item in each year's current budget. Can we assume that Wall Street and the economy will be happy with action on the current year's deficits only? I don't think so. We need to do something about our past indiscretions, and should be talking about $30 or $40 billion per year of new revenues. If this means more taxes, so be it.

Of course, this is going to mean some real sacrifices. We may even have to give up a couple of television sets or the spare car. We're experts in telling the British, the Argentines, the Mexicans and others about their need to practice austerity in managing their finances. Now we need to take some of our own medicine.

GENE ANDREASEN

Los Angeles

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