The Concord Coalition has been trying to convince President Clinton and his advisers to recognize that "a real plan for deficit reduction is both economically necessary and politically feasible." The coalition wants to reverse the trends of the recent past and, ultimately, to fashion a balanced federal budget, a higher savings rate, and more investment in productive enterprise. It wants to effect great changes in the way the economy is run because its founders believe the United States is headed on a disastrous fiscal course. Last week the coalition was set back.

It is difficult to write yet again about the national debt. Few people in the federal government are serious about change, and too many middle-class voters are dependent upon federal largesse. It's all old-hat, the result of a decade and a half of huge deficits, and so far the country hasn't shriveled up. Why worry?

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