For more years than I care to admit, I’ve started each morning with a cup of coffee and the morning paper.
A CDT headline in Monday’s local news section spoke of Pennsylvania Treasurer Rob McCord’s support for borrowing money solely to invest, using the investment gains to help pay for pension costs.
It’s common for sophisticated investors who are comfortable with risk-taking to use debt leverage to increase gains, knowing that if the market goes bad it will magnify the losses.
But this strategy should never take place in government, and to hear our state treasurer suggest it should scare us all to our bones.
This wacky idea is emblematic of our crisis in Harrisburg. It’s a failure to face and fix our problems for the long term.
We have huge financial problems that require structural change, not gimmicks. If we want big government we have to pay more for it and/or reduce the cost of operating it. Regardless, it will be a process, not a one-time solution. And it won’t be easy.
Our elected officials have a tough job and never more so than now. Each day that goes by without financial solutions will run up the cost of fixing the problem.
It will require courage, wisdom, leadership and bipartisanship to begin resolving our financial crisis through decisions that will clearly be unpopular.
I urge our legislators to get to work and face these issues now.