Final Word from Wednesday, December 2, 2009

The record budget deficits in the Czech Republic and other countries come as a surprise for some people, but the deficits are merely an accumulation of bad decisions in the past that were plain for all to see. The welfare state has become too generous to those who don't need help and has failed to provide adequately for those who do. Fraud, waste and abuse in government procurement and spending have become institutionalized and have contributed to a widening of the gap between the haves and the have-nots. Government borrowing, too, has disproportionately benefited those who know how to play the system. The only way to fix the deficits is to reverse the bad decisions as much as possible, not to add more bad decisions on top of them. Time is running out, though, and a debt moratorium, rescheduling or other form of default is beginning to loom as the most likely of the possible bad solutions.[Czech Republic revenue expenditures]

Glossary of difficult words

accumulation - a mass or quantity of something that has gradually gathered or been acquired;

plain to see - visible to all;

procurement - purchasing;

institutionalized - established in practice or custom; established as part of an official organization;

haves and have-nots - those who are advantaged by an economic system and those who are disadvantaged;

debt moratorium - legal authorization to debtors to postpone payment;

to loom - to appear as shadowy form, esp. one that is large or threatening; to seem to be about to happen.

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