America’s debt –Who Will Pay?

America-is the sun rising or setting?
America-is the sun rising or setting?


America’s debt –Who Will Pay?

America is in debt. We are not broke. We have borrowed too much money. Someone has to pay it off. The real question that our Congressmen and Senators are struggling with is who will pay off America’s debt?

Let’s make this simple. If you found yourself in debt, how would handle it? You would look at your income and your expenses and you would do what you had to do to pay off your debt. If you could increase your income by working overtime or holidays you would do it. If you could cut expenses by reducing your cable bill or eating at home or driving less you would do it. You would use the extra money to pay down your debt. This is not complicated. It is hard and requires some changes but you know how to do this.

Now let’s say that you decide that you are not going to increase your income. You don’t want to work the extra hours. The only choices are on the expense side. Now you have to do something more drastic like sell your car and bike to work or taking your child out of baseball. You have to give up more. You have to make harder choices. No matter what you decide you and your family pay the price.

Now move back to Washington. Because of how Washington works something simple is made difficult. Washington will decide who will pay off the debt. The Republicans say they will not agree to anything that increases income like increasing taxes on the richest Americans. By not taxing those who have most of the money the burden falls on the rest of us. We did not receive the benefit of the expenses like bailing out the rich bankers and brokers on Wall Street but we will pay America’s debt.

Let’s put this in perspective, the richest 20% of Americans own about 84% of the wealth/assets while the remaining 80% of us own only 16%. The rest of us received less of the benefit from the excessive spending and we will pay more of the debt caused by the excessive spending.

This is not a fair solution for the majority of us but it is good for the politicians who will get re-elected because of their efforts to protect the wealthy. And the wealthy can afford a new fence around their horse farm. Maybe you will be lucky enough to dig the fence post holes for them. And the Republicans can tell you how the wealthy create jobs with your money.

It makes no sense to exclude those who have benefited the most from government spending from paying their fair share of America’s debt. It makes no sense at all, but if common sense were common, we would all be better off.


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Comments 38 comments

GNelson profile image

GNelson 5 years ago from Florida Author

hazelbrown, I couldn't agree with you more. You took the words right out of my mouth. Thanks! The GOP is willing to harm this country just to make the president look bad. I think that is un-American.


hazelbrown profile image

hazelbrown 5 years ago from Central PA

It's been proven over and over that the wealthy DO NOT circulate vast amounts of money in the economy. Millionaires do not go create jobs with their money, or spend it - they HOARD it. We need to tax them! How is cutting education, social security, medicare, programs for women and children, etc. going to solve ANY problems? You will create a million more problems by doing this. The only reason the GOP doesn't want to tax the wealthy is because a) they themselves are wealthy and b) all their friends and supporters are wealthy too. I don't see how regular Republicans have been brainwashed into believing the GOP rhetoric.

ALSO - the people who think the Gov. should stay out of people's business are misguided. Taking away abortion rights is very intrusive, a government overreach. And people who don't like government actually DO like government. Do you like public education, roads, national parks, etc? I think you do.


GNelson profile image

GNelson 5 years ago from Florida Author

Will, We will disagree on that. Bush will go down in history as one of the worst Presidents ever.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

"Will, I see you didn't mention doing away with corporate welfare."

I would stop all subsidies immediately, including corporate subsidies. It is not the business of government to subsidize anyone!

And let's stop the BS! This recession, as we now know, is a direct result of Fannie, Freddie, and the Democrats urging and even threatening banks to make bad housing loans to those who could not pay it back.

It had little or nothing to do with Bush.


GNelson profile image

GNelson 5 years ago from Florida Author

Will, I see you didn't mention doing away with corporate welfare. Got to keep them boys happy to get re-elected. Taking from those who don't have will fix everything. Right? I agree we need to stop spending money we don't have and we won't have any if the people with the money don't pay their share. Didn't Clinton have a surplus and didn't Bush give it all away? His tax cuts created so many jobs that we have the highest unemployment since the Great Depression. How much did the Bush wars cost? Your road is the road that got us here. Take the Left fork!!! We might have a chance to get out of debt.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

If 'the rich' were taxed at 100%, it still wouldn't be enough!

Here's a thought for you, GNelson...what if we stopped spending money we don't have?

What if we phased out the social programs that are bankrupting us (just like Greece!), and actually shrank the size, scope, and power of government?

What if we made government adhere to the Constitution and stay out of things that clearly aren't authorized by the Constitution?

We've tried it your way, and all around the world, socialism is failing...as always!

Give up your socialist pipe dreams, get out of the way of the private sector, and watch America roar back into life!


GNelson profile image

GNelson 5 years ago from Florida Author

Will, don't hate the rich. Just think they have the wealth to help America out. I don't even think they would mind. Those who have the wealth can afford to help. The bottom 50% don't have squat. Get down off your horse and look at the numbers.


GNelson profile image

GNelson 5 years ago from Florida Author

The top 20% had 85% of the wealth in 2007, the top 1% had about 33% of the wealth. Those figures have gone up since then. That leaves 15% of the wealth for the bottom 80% of us. Those who have benefited the most from our system need to carry their share of the load. They have benefited most from the deficited spending and should not complain about paying their fair share. Not taxing them puts the burden on those of us who have the smallest slice of the pie. Start by taxing the top 20% at the Clinton rates and use the money to pay the debt down. We have had the lower Bush rates for 10 years and 20% of us need a job. Which 20% can help America out of this mess?


CMerritt profile image

CMerritt 5 years ago from Pendleton, Indiana

I'm just jumping in here, but GNelson, WHAT do you think the "fair share" of the wealthy should be? Who do you consider, "wealthy"?


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

As long as we soak the hated rich, nothing else matters.

Spend us into oblivion...that's fine.

Run the country into the ground...no problem.

Drive companies overseas...who cares.

As long as we make the rich pay their fair share!

The top ten percent already pay most of the taxes, but that's not enough for the left. 50% of Americans no longer pay income tax at all, but that's not good enough either.

The rich must bear all the burden, until they are no longer rich and the people they used to hire no longer have a job! Only then will the left finally be happy.


GNelson profile image

GNelson 5 years ago from Florida Author

Will, As long as the wealthy pay their share.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

"True, we are not getting out of this mess with the same thinking that got us into it."

For once we agree. Get government the hell out of business and out of the way. Pass a balanced budget amendment and stop the insane borrowing and spending that got us into this.


GNelson profile image

GNelson 5 years ago from Florida Author

Debby,

True, we are not getting out of this mess with the same thinking that got us into it.


Debby Bruck profile image

Debby Bruck 5 years ago

Hello G [is that George?] Nelson ~ I like your attitude and the calm rapport with which you riposte. We're in a pickle, that's for sure. How do get clean, or is that clean house and preserve our nation ~ that requires new ideas, as Neil has suggested. A New Deal and A New Way Of Thinking, that we haven't invented yet. Blessings, Debby


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

"Will, just like you ignore Goldman Sachs and Wall Streets role in this mess. Flip the coin over. You remember them. We bailed them out."

All part of the same Freddie and Fannie scam! All part of the same toxic debt stupidity brought to you by the Democrats.

BTW, the Obama administration is full of ex-Goldman Sachs execs!

Without Freddie and Fannie buying up bad paper, those loans would never have been made, there would be no recession, and our homes would be worth twice what they are today.


GNelson profile image

GNelson 5 years ago from Florida Author

Neil, It takes an open mind to accept or create new solutions. Your are right we are not getting out of this mess with the same thinking that got us into it.


GNelson profile image

GNelson 5 years ago from Florida Author

Will, just like you ignore Goldman Sachs and Wall Streets role in this mess. Flip the coin over. You remember them. We bailed them out.


Neil Sperling profile image

Neil Sperling 5 years ago from Port Dover Ontario Canada

WRONG - Malcolm Forbes once said that the purpose of education is to replace an empty mind with an open one.--- An open mind is empty and free to think and create on it's own.... way too much information in the world already and no NEW solutions. Education is cramming us full of more outdated theories. We can not expect to make the world better with information and knowledge that was responsible in getting us in this mess in the first place.

Back to Zero is where we need to go... see my hub on that topic.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

You completely ignore the fact that the Democrats got us into this mess by creating Fannie, Freddie, and the Community Reinvestment Act, and then encouraging (and even threatening!) banks to make bad loans to those who obviously could never pay it back!

It had zip to do with tax cuts. It had everything to do with corrupt Democrats buying votes with bad debts!

Why do you ignore that fact, GNelson?


GNelson profile image

GNelson 5 years ago from Florida Author

BobbiRant, What is great about this county is that we can have these discussions and not end up in jail. If we all agreed it would be very boring. Malcolm Forbes once said that the purpose of education is to replace an empty mind with an open one. We need to open some minds.


GNelson profile image

GNelson 5 years ago from Florida Author

Will,

The bush tax cuts were 10 years ago and we have the highest unemployment since the 30's. They did not work. Look up the numbers on income, Will. The very rich earn most of the income, they should pay most of the income tax. That would be fair and proportional. Otherwise we are taxing those who can afford it least and giving it to the rich as a tax break. I don't know why that is so hard to understand. Many of the wealthy agree with this simple solution. We are not taking bread out of their mouths or stopping them from creating jobs. They are not paying increased taxes right now and right now they are not creating jobs. Just like they didn't under Bush.


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

So now the despised wealthy are swindlers?

(sigh)

(And they claim conservatives are the haters!)


BobbiRant profile image

BobbiRant 5 years ago from New York

Will, you need to STOP standing up for the swindlers. Do YOU own some big business? One might think so. Check MY latest hub!!!!!!!!!!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

"But we do need the richest Americans to pay a little more."

No, no, no, no! We need to keep that money in the private sector, so the economy can recover!

WHAT WE NEED IS FOR GOVERNMENT TO STOP SPENDING AND BORROWING!

Good Lord! Why is that so hard for the left to understand?


GNelson profile image

GNelson 5 years ago from Florida Author

ahorseback, It will take something drastic to get people to act.


GNelson profile image

GNelson 5 years ago from Florida Author

Will, The blame is on both sides. But we do need the richest Americans to pay a little more. They pay about 17% of their income in taxes. You probably pay a higher percentage than that!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

GNelson

We aren't in this mess because the people you despise don't 'pay their fair share'. (The top 10% pay almost 95% of all income taxes, and 50% of Americans now pay no income tax at all! What's 'fair' about that?)

We are in it because the Democrats you admire created Freddie, Fanny, and the Community Reinvestment Act!

They then pressured banks to make bad home loans to people they knew could not pay it back by promising them that Freddie and Fannie would buy up the toxic and worthless debts. When Freddie and Fannie finally and inevitably failed, banks were left holding all that bad debt and the whole thing crashed.

Why did your idiot Democrat Party do something so stupid? Because they wanted all those grateful new ‘homeowners’ to vote for Democrats!

Your Democrat Party is directly responsible for the current mess (and the gutless Republicans who refused to speak up before it was too late!) so why should we listen to you try to place the blame on others?


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago

Pres. Obama has met about 60 times since taking office with the pres. of the AFL-CIO , the NEA has control of local and state tax dollars , The feds themselves are about the largest employer with the least ammount of productivity in the country, 90 % of American voters can't tell you who thier congressman or womans name is. Grass roots is right , but nothing will happen until hunger begins to spread its ugly head into the arena. Americans don't have the personal commitment to change anything in an organized fasion. My prediction: we will slowly come out of a longer resession than predicted to the same ole same ole attitude of me fist!


GNelson profile image

GNelson 5 years ago from Florida Author

ahorseback, Government has a role to play but I would like to see more potholes fixed and less social engineering. Unions only represent 10% of working Americans so their role is much inflated. Corporations are way to involved in politics. The American voters need to turn off the TV and pay attention to what their elected officials are really doing. I don't know about revolution but we do need some radical and it doesn't need to be financed by two cokes and a fox. We need grassroots action, less individual debt, local spending and elected officials who represent those of us who work for a living. Maybe that would be a revolution.


GNelson profile image

GNelson 5 years ago from Florida Author

Will, America was much more sucessful when the richest Americans paid their fair share. In the 50's and 60's amd even the 90's.


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago

One other important part of the problem and the solution, is this mentality of "I'm spending my kids inheritance", In America , the voters divisional mentalities question everything , even solutions, and the "I want mine first" attitudes of unions and corporate entities. Hell, Im not sure it can be fixed without a revolution. Like it or not Will Star is right , gvernment has to get out of the way and voters have to awaken there responsibilities.Great hub!


WillStarr profile image

WillStarr 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

If the average citizen in your analogy was stupidly borrowing 42 cents of every dollar he spent, he deserves to go belly up!

Every additional tax dollar taken by government is another dollar taken out of the already stressed, job-producing private sector.

At this point, only dim-witted, socialist ideologues like Barack Obama are stupidly suggesting a tax increase in the middle of an economically strapped, private sector recession!

The government created entities of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac created this mess, so the best thing government can do now is get the hell out of the way.


GNelson profile image

GNelson 5 years ago from Florida Author

HSchneider, I think we need to put a housewife in charge of the budget talks. She would have them taking action instead of talking because she would have to pick up the kids from school by four o'clock because they cancelled the school buses..


GNelson profile image

GNelson 5 years ago from Florida Author

Peter, I believe we are seeing the fight for a middle class in America. I am not sure who will pay the bills after we are sucked dry. But anyone who would hold America hostage as pretty much given up on us.


HSchneider 5 years ago from Parsippany, New Jersey

I do not understand why the Democrats have allowed the GOP to totally hijack this debate. I wrote 2 Hubs putting forth my plans to solve the budget deficit and grow America. Why won't Democrats do this? We need additional taxes especially from the wealthy in addition to expense cuts. Instead they allow the GOP to talk of killing Medicare. We must change the conversation. The Tea Party is not the majority or anything close.


GNelson profile image

GNelson 5 years ago from Florida Author

tony0724, I like Ron Paul. He speakes his mind and doesn't follow party platforms blindly. He should be an Independent. Don't know Van Jones but I'll look him up.


PETER LUMETTA profile image

PETER LUMETTA 5 years ago from KENAI, ALAKSA

Yes your right! We all must share in the pain not just the ones who can least afford it. Tell the republicans and anyone else that we must be fair and we can do it. Don't believe that crap about them creating jobs because they don't. They get the profit but pay no bills. Isn't this why we got rid of the English? The Tea Bags are working for the wrong side! Save America, Peter


tony0724 profile image

tony0724 5 years ago from san diego calif

According to the commie Van Jones we have plenty of money here. But I am of the opinion that we are so deep in the hole that neither side really has an answer. But it would not be politically expedient of them to say so. Ron Paul may be our only hope.

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