Apocalipsis fiscal ahora

Cuando el apoyo al Presidente George W. Bush en los Estados Unidos se ha desmoronado en el último año, tal vez el elemento más sorprendente sea la rebelión de los economistas y observadores de la política económica. La semana pasada, Peggy Noonan, redactora de discursos para el Presidente Reagan y para el primer presidente Bush, declaró en el Wall Street Journal que, si hubiera sabido cuál iba a ser la política fiscal de George W. Bush, habría votado a Al Gore en las elecciones presidenciales de 2000.

"Si hubiera pensado [que George W. Bush] era un republicano inclinado a gastar con creces, al estilo de Rockefeller... no lo habría votado...", escribió Noonan. Bush "sí que se presentó como un conservador... [y] el conservadurismo es hostil, por razones que van desde las abstractas y filosóficas hasta las concretas y prácticas, al gasto y los impuestos elevados..." Y después cae en una desesperación casi total: "El Sr. Bush no tendrá que volver a presentarse nunca más como candidato, por lo que está en condiciones de dar un paso adelante y abogar, aunque sólo sea retóricamente, por la aminoración y reducción del gasto. No lo ha hecho y no hay señales de que vaya a hacerlo..."

Noonan no está del todo en lo cierto. George W. Bush no se presentó como un conservador normal, sino como algo que llamó "conservador compasivo", con lo que preservó cierta ambigüedad. Algunos se centraron en lo de "conservador": esperaban del Gobierno de Bush que la política fiscal controlara el gasto y eliminase muchos programas para financiar unas reducciones importantes de los impuestos.

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