Stanford Hoover Institute’s John Cogan shows that rising entitlement spending is the chief reason for runaway federal spending. His graph doesn’t show federal taxation, which has hovered around 17% of GDP since the end of the WWII and where it is expected land after the recent tax cut. By claiming only punishingly higher debt or taxes relative to GDP can finance growing entitlements, Cogan overlooks America’s only realistic antidote for growing entitlements—high-skilled immigration. My recently published WSJ op-ed lays out the case for high-skilled immigration as the only viable solution for financing growing entitlement spending.
Tellingly, Cogan’s op-ed is juxtaposed next to Senators Inhofe and Whitehouse’s plea for increased infrastructure spending, which, as is typical of propaganda, mistakenly makes the case for increased spending without regard for the opportunity cost of reduced spending elsewhere, whether in the public sector or the private. It’s easy to agree on increased infrastructure spending if one ignores the cost. It’s near impossible to reach agreement when we must either trade one form of government spending for another—e.g., infrastructure sending instead of entitlement spending—or take resources from the far more productive private sector.