Incoming NTA president Diane Lim Rogers of the Concord Coalition explained that the fiscal cliff is the combination of federal spending cuts and tax increases that are scheduled to shrink the federal deficit to $641 billion from $1.1 trillion in the current fiscal year, a decline of $487 billion in one year. . . .
Rogers closed the discussion by asking the 300 or so economists whether they thought that Congress would deal with the fiscal cliff by the end of the year. Roughly 60 percent said yes, which, of course, would be the rational outcome from an economic point of view.