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Intergenerational Ethics and Economics

Editorial

Abstract

Debates about the future direction of national spending have swept through Western governments in recent years. Driven by doubts about the long-term viability of past levels of spending, present levels of budget deficits, and future levels of promised entitlements, governments have been faced with hard choices. In some cases, such as in the United Kingdom, some austerity measures have been imposed, often in the face of opposition from intellectuals and the public at large. Proposed alternatives to austerity typically involve increases in government spending and subsidy, intended to catalyze the private sector and restart the sputtering economic engine.

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