Over the past 30+ years, the Left—and Progressives in particular—have been overwhelmed by the powerful Right Wing Messaging Machine, which has defined Progressive policies using their terminology and their frames. If Progressives want to not only win this election, but rally the public at large to support our policy initiatives, it's imperative that we clearly (and truthfully) define our own policies, and that we do so in a way that speaks to the moral decision-making centers in listeners' brains. In this installment of The Winning Words Project, we're getting a head start on what is almost certain to be another knock-down, drag out brawl over the next debt ceiling vote. If Progressives can get ahead of the game, any attempt by the Right to control the narrative will be lost and the country as a whole will win. So let's get started ...
Economist Jared Bernstein examined the evidence from the failed European forced austerity experiment. His conclusion:
Regimes that pursue forced austerity—lowering spending by reducing benefits and public services to the working class—despite its pervasive and predictable inadequacy, have political—and not economic—motivations.
Looking at economic data from both sides of the Atlantic, Bernstein, former Chief Economist and Economic Adviser to Vice President Joe Biden and executive director of the White House Task Force on the Middle Class, points out that the forced austerity scheme not only fails to deliver any economic boost, it even fails at its very purpose—to reduce the burden of national debts relative to Gross Domestic Product.
Gross Domestic Product, or GDP, is the market value of all goods and services produced in the country in a given period. GDP per capita is often considered an indicator of a country's standard of living.
Simply put, the forced austerity scheme Republicans are pushing on the working class is a dangerous solution for addressing our country's debt.