… is from page 142 of the original edition of James M. Buchanan’s and Richard E. Wagner’s great 1977 book, Democracy in Deficit: The Political Legacy of Lord Keynes:
The events of fiscal history strongly support the hypothesis that unconstrained access to public borrowing will tend to generate excessive government spending.
Public borrowing allows citizens-taxpayers today to spend the money of citizens-taxpayers tomorrow, many of whom aren’t yet even born, and much less of voting age. And when people are able to spend other people’s money, they do so irresponsibly and excessively. This irresponsibility and excess only grow when today’s citizens-taxpayers are falsely assured by some prominent economists that the burden of government indebtedness on future generations is nothing, or at most negligible, to the extent that this debt is held by fellow citizens.