Friday, February 25, 2011

Spending Restraint, Part II: Lessons from Canada, Ireland, Slovakia, and New Zealand

Nations can make remarkable fiscal progress if policy makers simply limit the growth of government spending. This video, which is Part II of a series, uses examples from recent history in Canada, Ireland, Slovakia, and New Zealand to demonstrate how it is possible to achieve rapid improvements in fiscal policy by restraining the burden of government spending. Part I of the series examined how Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton were successful in controlling government outlays -- particularly the burden of domestic spending programs.


  1. Although I should have made this comment on the previous post, I don't think Clinton gets enough credit for the amount of spending he cut. There's a reason he was able to balance the budget. Economically, he really seemed to know what he was doing.

  2. New Zealand was always one of my favorite examples. The free-market reforms the did in the 80's were very successful. Regretfully, that lesson was lost on later governments.

  3. Roshawn,

    I'd argue that Bill Clinton is one of the luckiest people on the face of the earth. If he had his way with the economy he'd have been another Jimmy Carter. However, circumstances (the 1994 election) and split government forced a budget discipline on him that wasn't part of his plan, but to his credit he adopted to save his own political skin and will ironically go down in history as a fiscal conservative who benefited from a booming post-cold-war economy and restrained spending.

    101 Centavos,

    I cringed a little at the Ireland example since their economy is in dire straits at the moment due to excessive government spending. Ironically, a number of these countries revert to their old ways of government excess when times were good and are suffering for it now.