Lefty: Why not wait to negotiate austerity? Growth is more urgent, and we both know how hard it will be to reach agreement on solving our long-term fiscal problem.
Righty: A weak short-term economy is not a valid excuse for delaying the legislative enactment of policy changes that would solve our deficit and debt problem. It is an excuse only for beginning the immediate implementation of those policy changes, and we can delay that implementation to address short-term growth concerns. Long-term austerity can be proposed, negotiated, and enacted while the short-term economy is weak and even if it is getting weaker.