America’s cable TV anchors and policy experts are paying scant attention to what’s arguably the most damaging and enduring aftershock from the COVID-19 pandemic: the outbreak in deficits and debt to levels not witnessed since World War II. The U.S. was facing a dire fiscal future before the crisis struck, but the economic lockdown, and the gigantic new spending enacted to combat it, brings the day of reckoning far closer. By borrowing multiple trillions at a pace never before seen, the U.S. is endangering the sterling credit that makes Treasuries and the dollar the safest of havens for global investors. It is likely that within the next decade, the U.S. will need to impose monumental tax increases. What America’s leaders aren’t saying is that it’s the middle-class Americans working today, the autoworkers, nurses, and deli owners, and not just their future generations, who’’ll foot most of the bill.
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