The national debt has finally reached the point of abject irresponsibility. The unpaid debt accumulated in the past decade exceeds that accrued over the 220 years between the Constitutional Convention and 2007. According to the U.S.Treasury <link> the total recorded debt on September 30, 2007 was $9,007,653,372,262.
Each citizen now owes approximately $61,900 to the country in addition to any personal debt. Each taxpayer has an individual obligation to the federal government in the amount of $168,000 (that is after normal taxes are removed from your income, interest and dividends).
Eh, a few billion here, a few billion there…What difference, at this point, does it make?
When an individual decides to accept debt in exchange for satisfaction of their needs or wants, he or she must generally provide collateral to the lender. That collateral might be in the form of a mortgage on their home or other real estate or a provision allowing the lender to access a portion of their income commensurate to not-less-than the amount of regular interest on that loan. Most frequently, the terms include the interest plus the termed pro-rata repayment of principal. In either or any case, the lender wants an assurance that the loan will be repaid.
No such requirement is made of governments.
When an individual or entity such as a company or corporation defaults on their debt, the courts may act on a declaration of bankruptcy and remove a portion or all of the existing debt. However, the borrower is obligated to offset as much of the debt as possible by liquidating physical assets and providing the proceeds to the court. That individual or entity must then resume life without. He, she or it must start from nothing with only a possible ongoing subsistence income to survive. Friends and family may choose to help out for a time, but eventually the particular debtor must assume the burden for their lives, livelihoods and actions.
If and when a federal government defaults on massive outstanding debt, their recourse is to take as much as necessary from the citizens therein to cover the obligation. That might mean converting our businesses, our real and personal property as well as our income and savings to cover the obligations made by our elected officials. We, as a citizens and taxpayers, have no choice at that point.
We had choices when we elected our presidents and representatives over time. We had the choice to re-elect or reject them. We allowed them to fritter the tax money we worked to earn. They did so in often irresponsible ways and against our wishes and principles. We allowed it. We created this problem. At the point of default, we have only us to blame.
That, my friends, is how Communism comes about. Once the government controls the economic infrastructure of a country, the citizens become chattel. Once the government has complete control over our lives and livelihoods, it is a long and tough fight to regain what we now have and complain about.
It is time to make some major changes. There is no longer a defining line between conservatives and liberals when it comes to government spending…it is all liberal spending. The line must be redrawn by making a rapid and colossal change to the failing congress and their process.
It is okay to have two (or more) parties with differing viewpoints offering input to policies and procedures for the nation. However they both, or all, must be reasonable and responsible for the decisions on which they arrive. There must be a cost/benefit analysis done, not just a cost analysis. The Congress must explore and debate the potential consequences of the laws and conclusions as well as the perceived benefits without indicting the opposition or depicting them as evil or insane. But we must accept the responsibility to elect sane and reasonable people to represent us.
Good luck handling your portion of the debt. *BTW, the median household income according to the New York Times on September 12, 2017 <link> is currently $59,039.
Just because a congressional candidate has a (D), (R), (L) or (I) behind his or her name doesn’t mean they always have you in mind when they spend your tax dollars. They, in fact, most often exempt themselves from accountability for inclusion in the laws they write no matter what affiliation they proclaim.
Our current president most likely falls into the Independent category. He is attempting to effect changes from the norm. However, the established and entrenched members of Congress, of all dispositions, are fighting him simply because he is not a homogeneous Washingtonian. They would rather scuff the toes of their wingtips kicking the can (National Debt) down the road rather than taking charge and disposing of it. It might be time to replace the whole team with members concerned for future generations.
The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author and are not not necessarily either shared or endorsed by iPatriot.com.