A February 7th AP article quotes Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner as saying the U.S. government ‘will never‘ lose its sterling credit rating despite big budget deficits and a newly increased debt limit that now tops $14 trillion.” The AP report explains:
The cost of borrowing would increase significantly if the ratings service lowered the credit rating, also known as a bond rating, for U.S.
Listening to Geithner use the word “never,” I was reminded of Inigo Montoya from the movie The Princess Bride. Montoya is a Spanish swordsman who calmly listens to his evil leader protest repeated setbacks with exclamations of “that’s inconceivable!”
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In an ABC’s This Week interview, Geithner explained that in times of economic troubles, international investors will actually continue to buy U.S. Treasury bonds because the bonds are such a safe investment. Sounds like Geithner’s saying it’s inconceivable that the U.S. credit rating could ever be downgraded. Yet, according to the AP:
Moody’s Investors Service recently issued a warning that the United States government’s credit rating could eventually be in jeopardy if nation’s finances don’t improve.
I can practically hear Timmy screaming “That’s inconceivable! It’ll never happen.”
Mr. Geithner, to quote a certain Spanish swordsman, “You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.”