A Well-Fed Beast; Or The Revenge Of Stockman

Howard Gleckman demonstrates the failure of starve the beast theory, i.e. that the "best way to cut government spending is to cut revenues":

Delinking spending from taxes made all those new programs appear free, thus encouraging more of them. Bill Niskanen, president of the libertarian Cato Institute and former economic adviser to President Reagan, figured this out years ago. Bill concluded that if 20 percent of spending is financed by deficits, people will perceive that government programs cost only 80 percent of their real price. And, not surprisingly, they will be more popular at the perceived discount than at their full cost.