To raise or not to raise the debt ceiling? At present that is the question we are being confronted with each time we tune into any kind of media.
But what does it all mean? Let’s see what we can learn without throwing mind-numbing figures around.
In a nutshell, the federal government is spending like the proverbial drunken sailor on shore leave. While this isn’t anything new, what has changed is the rate at which this has been happening. Over the last decade, we’ve seen the sprawling spread of beaurocracy, more agencies to control you and me. Paying for these agencies hasn’t helped the national debt at all.
Regardless of who may be at fault, we’ve been borrowing unfathomable amount of money from China and other nations and then doling it out in foreign aid to counties and peoples that in actuality, despise us. At home, we are pouring money into entitlement programs both for those who need it and for those who simply refuse to work.
And as a result of this out-of-control spending, we have reached an impasse. According to our own self-imposed rules, we have borrowed all the money we can borrow unless and until we raise the limit, which is known as the debt ceiling.
Raising the debt ceiling is not anything new. At least twice during the administration of George W. Bush, the limit was raised.
So why is this anything new?
Again, trying to keep the issue simple, this time is different because unlike other presidents, Barack Obama has been spending money at an alarming rate, at a rate millions of times higher than any other chief executive. And he doesn’t appear inclined to slow down, either.
It is this issue that has alarmed conservatives and others who are reading the handwriting on the wall that is pointing towards a national collapse, a bankruptcy of epic proportions. Rather than raise the debt ceiling, many on the right are advocating a cut in spending. On the left, liberals are crying racism and claiming not to understand why anyone wouldn’t simply vote to raise the debt ceiling.
So what is the answer?
First, in the short-term, the debt ceiling simply must be raised. But we cannot hand a blank check to the executive branch, or anyone else for that matter, to continue spending at a mind-numbing rate.
The alternative to keeping the debt ceiling at its present rate is to radically cut spending. We like the idea, but it would be well nigh impossible to cut the necessary amount and keep our fragile economy from faltering. With nearly double-digit employment, great care must be exercised in all matters economic.
Secondly, spending simply must be cut. The saying is that charity begins at home. We must halt a goodly percentage of foreign aid. The nation of Pakistan would be a good place to start. For a decade, they used our money and sheltered Osama bin Laden. Cut ‘em off.
At home, it’s time to cut funds to those who will not work. We’ve no problems with helping those who cannot help themselves. Those who have spent their adult lives working and cannot find a job at the present time should also be supported until our economy returns to its former state. But those who are simply drawing a check and have the ability to work simply must be weaned off the national teat.
The rallying cry of the left is to raise taxes on the wealthy. On the surface, that sounds like a great idea. Let’s soak the rich; they have so much money, they’ll surely never miss some of it, right?
Sadly, it doesn’t work that way. Both sides want to stimulate the economy so as to bring about more jobs. What segment of the population is likely to give rise to these new positions?
If we tax the wealthy, the federal government will reap more money, but we will also watch the economy shrink even further as the wealthy quite naturally find ways to absorb the new taxes. So it is that if we attempt to make money by taxing the rich, we will hamper any economic recovery plans.
If this nation is to be salvaged—something we’re not so sure will ever happen at this point—we must come up with a lasting solution to our financial situation. We favor something we call the “Confederate Solution.”
No, we’re not talking about soldiers in gray singing “Dixie” while waving rebel flags. Nor are we talking about the secession of certain states from the Union, although losing some of our northernmost localities wouldn’t terribly hurt our feelings. Rather, we favor a return to the values of the Founding Fathers, who began this nation as a confederacy and then, with the writing of the current constitution, transformed it into a republic.
The Confederate Solution would return powers to the states rather than vesting all power in the federal government. It is a fact that the various regions of this nation do not share the same values and as such, should not be treated the same. By allowing states to make and enforce their own laws apart from each other and therefore keep most of the money at home, we would see a renewing of America. Liberal states could have cradle to grave entitlement programs if they so choose. Those with a more conservative bent could have programs that favored putting their citizens to work.
Those who are argue that such a system could simply not work have only to go back 150 years in history and understand that until President Lincoln began consolidating power during the war, this was how our nation operated. In fact, a cursory reading of the Constitution shows that is how the United States was intended to be administered.
At any rate, we’ve seen that allowing the nation to be controlled from 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue has been a dismal failure to the past 150 years. Liberal or conservative, that much is something upon which we can all agree.