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One suspects that historians and economists will consistently agree on one irrefutable fact: nations that allow their economies to bathe in red ink are destined to fail. This failure takes many roads and differs in timing, but massive, uncontrolled national deficits eventually reduce a nation state to being a pauper, a pariah -- and pathetic.
Enter Joe Biden's "American Jobs Plan," a $2.3 trillion spending scheme that takes some Americans' most fevered fantasies and wraps them inside an "infrastructure" label in an effort to convince Capitol Hill that the spending is all about roads and bridges. An analysis by the Wharton School places plenty of caution flags on this initiative.
To be clear, the spending bill is actually the creation of a national debt so massive that it has the means to destabilize a democracy dependent on a functioning economy.
For the Chinese Communist Party seeking to master the 21st Century as the one global superpower, it represents a strategic victory without so much as firing a single bullet. They know that an economically weakened America cannot possibly sustain its military leadership when it is burdened with paying down a massive debt. Our allies and unaligned nations recognize this threat as well, and will reinvent their relationship with China if they believe America's best days are in the past.
Even the White House acknowledges that their spending debt would take 15 years to pay off, providing that Biden's proposed corporate tax hikes generate the projected revenue – itself highly questionable. What makes the Administration believe that Corporate America would not respond with massive restructuring to avoid a confiscatory tax bill -- or passing the added cost on to the consumer, or moving the company's headquarters offshore to a country with a lower corporate rate -- to avoid the threat of losing its international competitive edge? Corporations have good accountants, too.
Few debate the idea that our nation's infrastructure is in need of serious attention but the level of political dishonesty in characterizing the Biden plan as "infrastructure" has even made many in his own party queasy. Significant portions of the bill are earmarked for "environmental" agendas and seeming favors to campaign donors, such as billions in subsidies for electric vehicles. The proposed bill cries out for more sunlight and vast quantities of disinfectant. Sadly, the bill suggests a clumsy political strategy to prevent open debate and an honest review of the Biden agenda.
This recipe for an economic apocalypse comes at a time when new job creation has stagnated and the specter of a serious inflation has begun to emerge. Biden's spending spree is far beyond Washington's traditional pork. It is creating a level of unsustainable debt in pursuit of a social agenda that could literally sink everyone, drowning all, regardless of which political party they claim.
As historians will tell you if we have the wisdom to listen, no one escapes the devastation of a debtor nation. No one.
Lawrence Kadish serves on the Board of Governors of Gatestone Institute.