The United States will not continue its world leadership unless it grows economically, former President Bill Clinton said in a speech Sunday.
Clinton said the balanced budget during his administration helped achieve "the longest economic expansion in history."
He said President Bush's tax cuts are causing huge deficits and threatening the retirement benefits of average Americans. He warned that the deficits would have to be repaid by today's children.
"They are giving me $87,000 in cut taxes from some middle-class guy's Social Security benefits and borrowed money," Clinton told a crowd of about 2,000 who paid up to $250 to hear the former president. "This is crazy."
Clinton said the United States should learn to cooperate with other nations on everything from trade to health care, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel reported.
He criticized the Bush administration for rebuking international agreements such as the Kyoto Protocol to fight global warming and the treaty to ban nuclear tests.
"I believe we cooperate when we can and act alone when we must. The other party believes we should act alone when we can and cooperate when we must," he said. "There is a significant difference."
Cooperation between the United States and foreign security services produced most of the victories in the war against terrorism, destroying 20 al-Qaida cells since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, he said.
Clinton said he will not endorse any Democrat running for president until after the party's nominee is picked, because they all helped him while he was in office.