Kunst: Federal debt is the real problem
Ryan Summerlin January 8, 2013
The most crucial issue facing Americans is the bankrupt state of our economy where we currently find ourselves living under a $16 trillion deficit. Post-election, many of my fervent but clear-thinking liberal friends are willing to concede that our primary problem is not revenue, but reducing our debt and they concede that the most reasonable approach to reaching this goal is to substantially reduce government spending.
Nevertheless, our incompetent Congress just passed the Taxpayer Relief Act which also increases spending over revenue by an additional $4 trillion. I wish we would all look at this unchecked spending on a per capita basis. In that way, Americans might be able to understand what our government is doing to us as individuals. Each of us will owe our government $64,000-plus to eradicate this debt. My four grandchildren, ages 4 through 12, collectively owe our government over $256,000 and they won’t reach working (taxpayer) age for another 9 to 17 years.
Over the past four years, the impediment to sanity in Washington has been the extreme demagogues at either end of the political spectrum in the House, the Senate and the presidency. Congress realizes that whatever bill the House and Senate can agree to must survive a presidential veto. President Obama campaigned on a platform that insisted on an extension of the Bush tax cuts for the middle class while asking the wealthy to “pay a little bit more for debt reduction.” He has said, repeatedly, that he will only support a “balanced” plan between new revenue and debt reduction. Last week, he announced that he was “pleased” with the new legislation that increases the national debt by an additional 25 percent. Pray tell Mr. President, what your definition of “balanced” is?
Three weeks ago, I asked SDN readers who voted for Obama to explain, factually, how their lives would be healthier, wealthier and safer under Obama policies. Alan Ruffel was the only respondent who took exception to my label of Obama policies as “socialistic” and pointed out that those who do not pay federal income taxes are teenagers, children, students, unemployed, retirees and stay-at-home moms who pay state, local and other use taxes. These were points well-made but not persuasive or responsive to the federal deficit dilemma.
I am still befuddled and the fact that the president is “pleased” with the imposition of $4 trillion more in spending/debt suggests that I need to ask the question differently. So, to Obama supporters, what is it about an individual tab of $64,000 that you deem desirable? More importantly, please tell me why Obama is pushing us well beyond bankruptcy while insisting that he wants the sole discretion to determine what our nation’s debt ceiling should be? Where is the “balance” when spending exceeds new revenues by $4 trillion? What is the president’s motive for bankrupting an entire nation with the complicity of an incompetent Congress? I want to know.
Jon M. Kunst Jr., Fairplay