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It is not controversial to state that after a full two trillion dollars in various stimuli have been injected into the economy that sooner or later at least some of the injection will have to be reversed. It is also not controversial to state that any fiscal contraction is likely to result in a certain amount of economic pain. Given that the so-called “fiscal cliff”, or slope, whatever we wish to call it totals only about 30% of the prior largess and that the economy has been expanding for almost a full four years, the question must be posed: if not austerity now, then when?

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