As I follow the discussions here I am constantly inspired by the strong underlying current of sensibility that is found in the comments of the participants. I am cheered beyond words. I try to be worthy of the discussions and the portent that they bring. At times I worry that there may be topics or issues that are both crucial and critical that we are not discussing, for I am certain beyond reasonable doubt that the Americans engaged in the discussions here and involved in the "Great Debates" will be the ones solving the formidable problems our nation faces in the coming months and years ahead.
I am also working to be worthy of these talks. I am woefully unfit to compare my scant knowledge of certain subjects with the vast and daunting knowledge some of you hold. I cannot fight the feeling that a great sea of willpower moves us forward, empowered by the sense that what we do is both right and just. And yet there has not been a discourse, or should I say, I have not seen a discourse as of yet that covers the following point.
For years, nay, decades, those whom we elected to guide our ship of state and to look after the affairs of state have been derelict in their duties. They have betrayed a sacred trust handed down to them by their forefathers. When this offense took place it was never corrected and has been perpetuated until now, and it threatens the very existence of this nation. If all of this sounds melodramatic rest assured, there is no way to emphasize enough the peril we are in nor the dreadful, brutal choices we will have to make to correct the problem.
Everyone you know knows that debt should be avoided whenever possible. The second president of the United States knew that govt. debt was bad policy and also morally unacceptable, effectively making our children responsible for what we've bought. Quite simply we are swindling our posterity.
The interest on our $11 trillion debt is $26 billion an month! That's over $300 billion a year. What does $26 billion buy?
- Annual budget of the Center for Disease Control ($6.1 bln)
- Annual budget for the Coast Guard ($8.7 bln)
- annual budget for the Dept of Interior ($11.1 bln)
That's just one month of interest. What's a year's worth of interest buy?
- Dept. of Commerce ($8.1 bln)
- Dept of Education ($68.0 bln)
- Dept of Homeland Security ($42.3 bln)
- Dept. Of Housing and Urban Development ($52.3 bln)
- Dept. of Energy ($23.2 bln)
- Dept. of Labor ($49.6 bln)
- Dept of Justice ($25.0 bln)
According to Glenn Beck's book, Common Sense
, by 2019 the annual interest payment will be $809 billion. That's the interest payment, not a dime on the principal. That's more than we spent last year on Defense, ($583 bln), Veterans' Affairs, ($86.6 bln), Transportation, ($68.7 bln), and State, ($18.9 bln) combined
Even if you taxed the total profits of Exxon Mobil, GS, Wal-Mart and IBM it would only generate $87.61 billion. That's taking their very last penny of profit.
How big is our debt? If you took every single dime of personal income tax revenue from every last American taxpayer for a decade
you could not pay off the national debt, even if you exclude the interest!
A Ponzi scheme is described as a fraudulent investment operation that pays returns to separate investors from their own money
or money paid by subsequent investors, rather than from any actual
profit earned. Bernie Maddoff pulled one for about $50 billion. Maddoff was a piker compared to the federal government though. We, in the form of the federal government, run several Ponzi schemes. Let's discuss some of them.
The first one is Social Security. You work, the feds take some of your earnings and "invest" it in Social Security, right? Wrong. The truth is the money isn't "set aside" until you retire. If you drop dead before you can collect, the government keeps most of it. Did you get the feeling the government doesn't want you to get to a "ripe old age"? In the meantime the government puts an "IOU" in the trust in the place of real money and goes off and spends it! Currently the government owes about $13.6 TRILLION to future retirees they do not have. So where will the politicians get the money? Why, from the money put in by our kids! The problem is that millions of boomers will soon be retiring and there is not enough money to pay them. Well, not without doubling or tripling payroll taxes anyway! Is this starting to sound like a Ponzi scheme now?
If that was the only hustle going on then maybe we could deal with it, but there's more. Another out-of-control entitlement is called Medicare/Medicaid. It comes in three flavors:
- Medicare Part A - Pays for hospital admissions and visits.
- Medicare Part B - Visits to the doctor.
- Medicare Part D - Pays for prescription drugs.
Medicare Parts A & B have an unfunded liability of, hold on to your hat, $68 TRILLION!
Despite Congress being fully aware that Medicare was hemorrhaging this badly they passed the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement and Modernization Act in 2003
. In less than 3 years Part D ran up unfunded liabilities of over $17.2 TRILLION!
Your portion of this, not the aforemention ever growing debt but just the Medicare part is equal to $330,000. Same for your spouse, same for your children. $1.3 MILLION for a family of four.
It doesn't matter how frugally you live. It doesn't matter how well you guard your health. Don't think this was just Democrats. Republicans, many still serving today, are guilty
of passing this crime.
Please remember that at the same time our great nation is loading down with this debt the same SOBs, (sorry for the language, ladies), these S. O. B. s are bailing out the carmakers, the banks, their buddies on Wall Street, namely everyone but YOU
. You dumb, fly-over country, uneducated, guns and Bible huggin' boob!
Whew! I apologize folks, but I'm more P.O.ed than a wampus cat. Look how close they have come to passing Cap & Trade and Obamacare. Now it's up to us to clean up the mess.
We all have known personal sacrifice in our lifetimes. Whether it was a financial one where you did not purchase an item simply because you could not afford it, or harder ones where one family member did without so others could have something they either needed or deserved. I drive a fifteen year old pickup. I also have two daughters in private colleges. You get the picture. In some families it was a young man or woman who went off to serve their nation in a foreign land and never returned. Some returned but were forever changed.
In the next few years we as a nation must confront the financial illness that plagues our great nation. Not by smoke and mirrors, not by increment and parcel, but by overhaul. We should not look at just Medicare and Social Security, but how and who we tax and for what. We need to understand where the monies are made in this country and where they are spent. It is absolutely insane that we export $40 billion dollars a month to foreign nations just for energy when we have an internal source that is cheaper, cleaner and whose supply is infinitely more secure than the whims of dictators abroad.
Sadly, all this will not be enough to balance out the Ponzi schemes. We, the Tea Party Nation, the everyday, working folk of this nation are going to have to stand up and say, "No, we can't afford this. It must come to an end. I will not pass this debt on to my children, or their children."
To do that will require some to do without. Think of what the implications of that mean. Before you rise up in arms and wish to find tar and feathers for me ask yourself this. When did this notion that it was your government's responsibility to ensure that you could see a doctor? When did it become your burden to pay for how other folks saved, (or didn't save), for a rainy day? It is one thing for you to reach out through your church or synagogue to help someone in your community, it is a completely different thing for it to be mandated to you by some long-dead elected official. By the way, yes, that long-dead elected official was a progressive.
Sarah Palin correctly railed against the concept of "death panels" in the Obamacare bill. The government has no business in deciding who lives and who dies. They have no business there by act or by omission of act. It is not for the government to make sure you get the pills to extend or insure your quality of life. They likewise have no business playing piggy bank for your rainy day, if for no other reason than that they are incapable of being trusted with the money. They've already proven that.
Now we get to the part that weighs on me terribly. It is the realization that it is incumbent on us, on this generation, to stop the fiscal irresponsibility that was started eighty years ago. It's time to balance the ledger. Of the need that we must do it there is no doubt. That it is going to hurt us and hurt us wickedly, well, there's no doubt about that either. If you are one for gallows humor, you could say it'll kill us, literally. But if shutting down Medicare, Social Security and the federal debt literally shortens our lives but will render our children a country that is free of our debts then that is what we must do. Anything short of that dishonors us and condemns our children to indentured futures. Personally, I'd rather die than to see that happen. The question becomes, how do you instill that
in an elected representative?