Don’t Strangle Economic Progress Through Austerity


A lot of policy matters are on the table now for potential changes. But one that shouldn’t be is progressive taxation, a new Economic Policy Institute (EPI) report states.

If the U.S. wants to ensure that the economy stays on track by employing as many workers as possible, EPI says the answer is not to change funding to prioritize paying down federal debt. Instead, it says what makes the most sense is the creation of a system that raises additional revenue in order to create a more equal economy.

“The most immediate fiscal policy challenge is to avoid crippling a still-incomplete recovery from the Great Recession,” the document states. “This means minimizing fiscal drag and avoiding unnecessary austerity measures (particularly on spending) in the short and even medium term.”

Tamping down on economic programs overseas in the years following the Great Recession has widely been condemned as a failure, one that hurt regular people struggling to get by the most. The U.S. risks a similar outcome if it does the same.

That’s why the Teamsters have been so out in front when it comes to pushing for an infrastructure investment agenda. Building and repairing roads, rails, bridges, power plants and water systems will employ workers with good-paying jobs while also upgrading networks that businesses depend on to remain globally competitive.

Elected officials need to show they believe in this country by moving to put the needed resources behind it. The U.S. will not get better if those charged with running it aren’t willing to put in the dollars needed so it can run at its optimum level.

That’s not just going to help workers; it’s going to grow the economy as well. And that together will help everyone. Together, all of America will win!