Yom Kippur, the Jewish day of atonement, generally falls around the end of the federal government's Oct. 1-Sept. 30 fiscal year, as Cato Institute fellow Chris Edwards reminds us. So Edwards, who is also the editor of www.DownsizingGovernment.org, mischievously proposes that to do penance for the sin of sipping—or in some cases, supping—at the government trough, we all try a fiscal fast.
"Let's see if we can go a day," he suggests, "in which we live without the federal government's welfare and services." More seriously, Edwards proposes that "Congress institute a day of atonement during which members go to the floor of the House and Senate and apologize to the American people for making no effort to the avert the fiscal train wreck that threatens the well-being of fuutre generations.
Blame it on heightened passions just before a presidential election. But my annual Yom Kippur poll of analysts on economic sins that should be atoned for has provoked an unusual degree of Old Testament-style anger at both the state of the economy and statements about the economy by the two main presidewntial candidates.
-- Gene Epstein, "Congress, Forecasters Have Much to Atone for" (Barron's, Septmber 24, 2012)