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Letters: The Keynesian way

January 27, 2013

Re "Fiscal fitness, Mr. President," Editorial, Jan. 23

The "liberal" Times parrots the line that one of our biggest economic problems is the deficit.

Many distinguished economists, starting with John Maynard Keynes and including several recent Nobel Prize winners, argued for exactly the opposite: more government spending and lower taxes during slumps, and the reverse during booms. We should have paid down debts in the early 2000s instead of letting the Bush administration use tax cuts and war spending to eliminate the budget surpluses of the Clinton years.

But with interest rates low, unemployment high and a huge demand for government services, now is the wrong time. We can deal with the deficit and the debt more effectively if we focus on growth now.

Allan Stewart-Oaten

Santa Barbara

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