Since it began to give credit ratings to nations in 1917, Moody's has rated the United States triple-A. U.S. Treasury bonds have been seen as the most secure investment on earth. When crises erupt, nervous money seeks out the world's great safe harbor, the United States. That reputation is now in peril.
Last week, Moody's warned that if the United States fails to rein in the soaring cost of Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, the nation's credit rating will be down-graded within a decade.
Our political parties seem oblivious. Republicans, save Ron Paul, are all promising to expand the U.S. military and maintain all of our worldwide commitments to defend and subsidize scores of nations.
It's not that they are oblivious Pat. It's that their world view is such that preserving and strengthening the status quo can only involve the continual expansion of government. Even among the GOP candidates, except for Paul and Fred (to a much lesser degree), the idea of reducing bureaucratic interventionism is remarkably absent in word (McCain, Huckabee) and deed (Huckabee, Romney, and Rudy).