THE PRICE OF DOING NOTHING
By: Wayne Brown
The debate fires are burning brightly in America as they have since the 2008 elections. In fact, they have barely had a chance to die out so that the public could pay attention to other factors in life. The disasters our political system creates in this country now dominate the news on almost a daily basis. This should be of great concern to America but apathy allows far too many of us to ignore it. The desire to feel that “everything is great” keeps a portion of us convinced that we are on the right track if we can just attack world hunger, world peace, and paint everything environmentally green…you do that by throwing money at it.
Sadly, we have very few among those serving in elected office today either willing to face the truth, understand it, confront it, and offer a viable solution to the actual problem. They occupy themselves with attempts to mask the problem in issues of their own creation in order to make themselves look good and feather their bed for the elective process. Considering the gravity of our current situation, I would say these are truly Americans without a conscience and possibly without a soul. These are people willing to sell America down the river to win an election, to gain power, or to benefit personally. You can call it want you want but it’s not public service by any means.
Our current national debt load towers around $14 trillion dollars. That debt has increased over $4 trillion dollars since just the 2008 elections. Liberals controlled both houses of Congress from 2007 through 2010 and also controlled the Presidency from 2008 to 2010. Like it or not, this spending spree is on their dime. They have had the power, the vote, the opportunity, but they simply lacked the discipline and initiative to do a damn thing about it. Their efforts went into finding or creating more social programs to fund. There was no loss of creativity to fund public broadcasting, Planned Parenthood, and organizations like ACORN with America tax dollars.
This is about the point where one of the left jumps up and says something to the effect that they were only trying to right all the wrong created by the George Bush tax cuts. Okay, go ahead and ride that tired old horse around the arena for a while. We have all heard it until we are sick of hearing it. Plain and simply, the George Bush tax cuts did not bring us to this brink of financial ruin in America. Runaway spending did it and the evidence is quite clear that much of that spending took place between 2007 and 2010 while the Democrats had the watch.
Of course, we need to stop and cry about the Stimulus Package which the Obama Administration was “forced” to enact to save America from total ruin. There was no time for discussion or debate on the issue. Have you noticed that one line seems to be the legacy of his administration? “There’s not time to examine the evidence or debate the fact, we must act and act now”. We heard that for Stimulus; we heard that for Healthcare; we are beginning to hear it again now on immigration reform; we heard it on the Bush tax cuts; we heard it on the budget and on and on. Now we are hearing it with regard to the debt ceiling. The Obama Administration lives off of disaster. It cannot accomplish anything that it desires without having a disaster to support it. Does that not bother you as an American voter? It should.
We have just been warned by the S&P that our overwhelming national debt appears to be out of control. We were also advised in the process that the debt ceiling which is looming ever so close was not the central issue to this concern. The concern is the unchecked continue spending habits in place in America today. If the current spending levels continue at the same rate, America’s national debt will exceed over $18 trillion dollars before the Obama Administration completes a second term, if there is a second term. Here’s the bottom line. Whether Obama is in office or not after 2012, if spending at the current rate continues, America will not have the opportunity to accumulate that much debt…it will fail long before. The writing is on the wall and only those blinded by the lies cannot see it.
Obama wants to suggest a delaying action. At best, he wants to essentially raise taxes on the rich. That’s raise taxes on the rich, not on corporate America, which is getting quite the free ride at the moment tax-wise. Now, let’s assume he is sincere in his suggestion and not just beating his gums for votes and stalling as the spending continues. The government will have to tax every household that has income of $100,000 a year or more to even have an inkling of making any headway toward reducing the deficit or creating any surplus funds to apply to the debt. Still, even if those taxes are imposed, the chances for success are minimal.
One thing does not seem to be getting across to the American public and the politicians love it. We can talk about “deficit” spending and we can talk of “national debt”. But you might notice that no one in elected office spends much time attempting to make sure the public can differentiate between the two. Here are the facts, plain and simple. The “national debt” equates in household terms to the amount of money that your household already owes to the credit card company. It is real and established debt. “Deficit” spending means that your household actually spends MORE money that it takes in on annual basis. That “excess” spending has to land somewhere thus it lands on the credit card increasing the “outstanding debt”. One cannot lower the “outstanding debt” as long as “deficit” or “excess spending” practices are taking place. In order to lower the actual debt, we must first create a “surplus” in our spending…money over and above what we spend annual. That “surplus” can then go toward reducing the debt. At the present, Obama and his minions care nothing for the idea of reducing the “deficit” spending but are parading around attempting to show their concern for the growing national debt…the two go hand in hand and those hypocrites know it.
Obama is suggesting that we first raise taxes without any real suggestion of significant reductions in current spending. So what happens if we follow that scenario? Well, at best, the “deficit” narrows but is not eliminated so the accumulation rate of “increasing debt” slows but continues. Without any previsions in place to reduce or even cap spending, it is highly likely that the increase taxes collected would simply be put into the money pile and new spending alternatives would be found essentially washing out any improving effect of a tax increase.
Now the downside of that suggestion is part of the recurring argument which goes back to the stifled economics we find ourselves in at the present. The economy is not moving forward at any significant rate. Part of the reason behind that is small business is scared to death of where the tax situation is headed and what the effects of ObamaCare will be in terms of their ability to survive over the next decade. Consequently, if they have surplus funds, that money is going into CD’s keeping the business as liquid as possible rather than investing it back into a business which may not pay a return on the short-term. Coupled with that, small business owners are abstaining from hiring new workers or filling jobs which have been vacated. This keeps the unemployment high and further contributes to a sagging economy which then, in effect, deprives the government of certain revenue streams tied to business transactions. Obama’s suggestion to raise taxes does not fly in terms of being a viable solution to the current problems facing America.
It does buy him the class division he desires to create for election time as it paints those who pay the bulk of the taxes in America as selfish and greedy people and sends votes running to the left side of the aisle.
Congressman Paul Ryan is seeing himself demonized by the left and various media outlets as in the execution of his duties as a member of the House Finance Committee; he has offered a proposal to address our growing problems. Ryan’s proposal, mind you, is estimated by most pundits to only go far enough to address 40% of the growing problem in America’s financial situation. In the eyes of the left and some media types, this man is a monster bent on taking away everything the elderly of America have to live on. This demonizing and decrying of Ryan’s plan leaves little or no time to examine the merits of the proposal or to debate it. It becomes nothing more than a left wing platform plank to point across the aisle and say, “we are the ones here to save you, and those folks over there are evil.” Unfortunately, too many of the senior citizens of America will actually believe that rhetoric and vote on the left in fear of loss. The left stops short of saying, “oh we’ll just continue what we are doing and you won’t feel a thing when you lose everything.” Ryan may not have it right in terms of how we approach Social Security and Medicare but he does have it right in pointing out that we cannot fix our situation without a viable discussion as to how we can downstream structure those programs when they do begin operating in the red and pulling the nation future into the red ink of debt. For those who do not recognize it by any other name, it’s called “future planning” and Mr. Obama would be advised to figure out what it is if he so desires to continue to use the word “investment” in his misleading speeches.
Politicians on both sides of the aisle in America have done a damn fine job of misleading the public for far too many years. Some of America has listened and lapped up all that was offered to them as the absolute truth. Far too many have slumbered in their apathetic comas and let the politicians do whatever the hell they wanted for decades upon decades without the least bit of accountability. Red flags should have gone off all over America when LBJ threw the Social Security funds into the federal revenue mix but we sat back and let it happen. Our government has essentially mismanaged those funds and they have been squandered. The incoming receipts can still cover us on the short-term but there is no surplus money in the fund that rightly should be there to cover the downstream workers as the workforce shrinks in future years. The surplus has been squandered but your elected officials certainly do not seek to have any “accountability” in the matter. They are far too concerned with perpetrating the lie.
Social Security and Medicare are viable programs which much of the American public has paid into for decade upon decade of their working life. This is not a “gimme” offered up by the government although over time both of the programs have certainly been abused in that manner. Americans were required to participate in these programs, they were not elective. They paid their money and they have the expectation of getting something back for that “investment” to use Mr. Obama’s word. So, let’s end the talk about “entitlements” and “freebies” designed only to make America feel guilty for taking the money that is right theirs to start. In hindsight, we never should have been put it in the hands of government officials to manage or to safeguard, but that’s water under the bridge now. Once we get past that discussion, then maybe we can move forward and still discussing viable ways to keep these programs out of the red in years to come so that members of today’s workforce will have something there when their time comes to retire.
If we continue to raise taxes, increase debt ceilings, and contribute to the growth of the massive national debt through deficit spending in this country, we are on a path that can lead to nowhere but bankruptcy. Even if the debt ceiling continues to rise, we eventually surpass the value of our Gross Domestic Product or Output on an annual basis with debt. At that point, we owe more than we are worth. Who wants to loan money to anyone in that position? At that point, our currency becomes unstable on the global markets. Inflation runs rampant and investments which have taken a lifetime to accumulate literally disappear faster than a dot-com stock. The price of doing nothing but kicking the can down the road is a looming disaster and we all know that no one but the Obama Administration can capitalize on a disaster.
The price of ignoring our problems is not bearable as a nation. The efforts to demonize those who raise the flags and ask to address the problems now in order to put in place viable solutions need to stop. The efforts to divide America over the issue need to stop for the efforts themselves are nothing more than deception designed to capture votes in an election. The efforts to raise the debt ceiling in order to kick the can down the road need to stop for they are nothing more than a stalling technique on the way to nowhere. If you love your country and the way of life it has provided to you, then you must stand among those who want to be counted and hold those who control our government accountable to address this issue with the greatest of priority. Our future as a country depends on it.
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