News In Brief

Word on the street

Paddy Hirsch Aug 22, 2011

I’m still on the fence on the issue of whether we should spend our way out of the economic doldrums or cut back and save, to prevent even more overstretch. But I heard one of the simplest and most coherent arguments on the spending side this weekend.

I heard it on Marketplace Money. And it didn’t come from some wonky economist or angry political hack. It came from an ordinary person on his lunch break in New York City.

We should absolutely be spending more money to help the economy. It’s absolutely crazy that you wouldn’t. People always use the example of, “Well we should be like a business, and we need to make sure that we’re not spending more than we have.”
But let’s say you have a shipping business, you’ve got a bunch of boats: they all have holes in them. So your employees are out of work, you’re losing money … what are you going to do? You’re going to take out a loan, you’re going to spend the money to fix your ships, get your employees back to work and start earning money again, to get back on your feet.

That was Ben Bradford, a student at Columbia University. Ben was interviewed by our reporter, Dash Wasserman.

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