Democrats and Republicans share blame for the nation's staggering debt, soon to top $16 trillion. But because their party controls the White House now, few Democrats in Congress seem anxious about deficit spending.
Erskine Bowles, who is both a Democrat and former White House chief of staff, is an exception. Bowles and former Sen. Alan Simpson, R-Wyoming, chaired a national commission that recommended ways of reducing the debt. Few of its ideas were implemented.
By refocusing attention on the debt and the need to address it, Bowles and Simpson reminded Americans of one of the major political, economic and social issues of our time. The delay in addressing it has serious consequences. How serious? Consider: When the Bowles-Simpson commission began its work in April 2010, the national debt was less than $13 trillion. Debt growth at that rate is a clear and present danger to Americans.