Generally this meme is accompanied by a metaphorical invocation of the hearth and home. Just as we all must meet our budgets at our meager post-Bush kitchen tables (“we” apparently doesn’t include the top 1% of Americans who are so wealthy that budgets are meaningless), so too must the wastrels in the federal government. Thrift, Horatio, thrift.
Not that facts matter to the Tea Party, but we can actually look at countries that followed austerity policies in the wake of the Bush Recession, and evaluate the results. And it’s dismal.
Britain passed an austerity plan that would make a Tea Partier proud. The result: Negative growth. Flat growth in the first quarter of 2011, and then a fall in growth. A total economic failure.
Greece of course also followed the austerity model. Do I need to say more. It’s become an economic basket case as austerity has virtually stopped all economic growth.
Germany instituted a partial austerity plan. Its GDP performance is about the same as ours.
Conclusion: austerity doesn’t work. But that won’t stop the Tea Partiers from repeating it like the crotchety and misinformed old Papas they are.