Yes, No or as a option?
As an option
Yes, No or as a option?
Deficit spending would make the game quite interesting.
To clarify: The poll is asking if we want a negative treasury or deficit spending? I see these as different things.
Deficit spending to me requires other nations: Economic Diplomacy, if you will. That, indeed, would add depth to the game. Countries borrowing from other countries, interest, etc. Not paying bills could lead to negative diplomacy points, decreased culture, etc. And for the countries loaning money, they would get positive modifiers related to greater influence.
A negative treasury to me is simpler: Have less than 0$ in the treasury, am continuing to lose money, but where you are forced to sell off assets within a few turns to 'balance the books'.
Important though would be that if deficit spending were to be implemented, that it be done in a way where it adds depth without adding micromanagement, which I think would spoil game feel and flow.
No, your treasury should not be allowed to become negative (although borrowing is fine), but you should be allowed to have negative gold per turn (fiscal deficit). If you have negative gold per turn, the following steps should happen:
1. The fiscal deficit should be paid out of the gold in your treasury. You can sell buildings or borrow/trade for gold with other civs to boost your treasury.
2. Once your treasury is depleted unit maintenance should reduce by however much is necessary to balance the books. This will lead firstly to low morale for your army (like when you become very unhappy) and then, if the situation continues, they should start to disband.
3. If stopping unit maintenance is not enough to balance the books, tile maintenance should reduce, leading to roads being removed.
4. If this still is insufficient, buildings should be sold to reduce city maintenance.
You might disagree with the order of 2, 3 and 4, but you get the idea. Clearly if the situation gets that bad, one (or many) of your neighbours would no doubt kindly relieve you of the difficult task of running your economy
This is different to borrowing from other civs, which is iffy and somewhat outside your control.
Were I designing Civ, you would be able to borrow quite early in the game, first from "the moneylenders", later from "the banks" and eventually from "the international market". The interest rate you get might depend on your reputation (whether you keep agreements).
With judicious use, you could push your development a little faster. If you get too greedy and overreach then you would be subject to the nasty repercussions described by craig123 above.