Many have been asking me to write more about the fiscal cliff. As we watch the election returns today, I would keep two straightforward things in mind.
First, the fiscal cliff was not created by aliens from outerspace. It is another poor government economic policy created in Washington. But the good news is that, like other bad economic policies in recent years, it can be fixed by a change in government policy.
Second, it will take a bipartisan policy effort, but the policy ingredients are ready. One of the best examples is the work of former Senator Sam Nunn and Pete Domenici who have created a bipartisan group of former members of Congress who have had a series of hearings with economists and other experts. The initiative is called the Strengthening of America–Our Children’s Future and is supported by these organizations and think tanks:
The Concord Coalition
The Bipartisan Policy Center
The Center for Strategic and Interantional Studies
The American Business Conference
The James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy at Rice University.
The Hoover Institution at Stanford
Harvard’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs
Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars
I had the opportunity to be on a policy panel with Alice Rivlin. There were also panels with Martin Feldstein and Lawrence Summers and with Robert Rubin and James Baker.