To the Readers' Forum:
What if your family handled your money like the federal government does?
For the sake of argument let's say you have the median US family income of around $50,000 but you chose to spend over 70,000 a year. You do this, by borrowing the balance on credit, to the tune of 20,000 per year. Let's also say you do this for years. During that time you use more credit to pay the interest on the first loans, never reducing the principal. Over time you would rack up a debt of $325,000.
You laugh, and say a family could never get that much uncollateralized credit. You would be right of course. But this is exactly what the federal government has done. The proportions of income, to spending, to debt, are the same only the numbers are much bigger.
How we got here can be the point of another discussion. The question is; what to do now? Do you continue on the inevitable roll toward bankruptcy, which is the only outcome if we change nothing, or do you balance things? As and individual you might get away with resorting to bankruptcy. As a country that mentality has very grave consequences.
As citizen members a nation, for those with a family, or something to live for, or even just a nagging conscience that you should leave the world a better place than when you came in, there is no alternative. We must take a longer view and realize that when the house of cards comes tumbling down, it will be very bad indeed.
The things we could not begin to give up when spending beyond your means - bridges to nowhere; funding for energy that costs four times that which is readily available; legions of bureaucrats, controlling everything that moves; Las Vegas parties for government workers at the government expense - will seem pretty petty if we can't afford food, shelter, or to defend ourselves from others who wish us harm. The government can't save us if it is in worse shape than we are.
Many prefer not to hear this reality. We can be a nation of opportunity again, but only if we stop looking at what government can do for us, and start looking at what government we would be better off without, or completely restructured.