This math isn’t fuzzy, part II

A few days ago, we laid out some basic facts about the financial situation in America for our Federal Government here.

What makes this even more difficult to swallow is that although the population of the United States is more than 309 million, that number includes many children and older retirees – America has only 110 million taxpayers. This translates to a national debt per taxpayer of more than $118,000.

Remember, all of our elected representatives, Republican and Democrat, have spent this money and left you with the bill. I can personally verify that paying back money borrowed to enjoy something in the past with present dollars is not pleasant. I can testify to the pain of using currently earned dollars on old expenses.

There is no solution to the problem that is painless. Either we continue on the path of higher taxes, more spending, punishment of the producers, increased federal control of business, and excessive intervention into our daily lives, OR we make a conscious decision to make a change in our spending, saving, and personal responsibility for America’s financial situation.

Will some citizens complain about the lack of compassion because we have to reevaluate many of the entitlement programs? Absolutely. However, the reality is truly frightening. These are facts, not opinion. We are in a very deep hole as a nation. Though it feels good to spend money to do good things for people, the fact is our government can not continue to spend money it does not have because We the People can not afford to pay the bill.

Long-time incumbents like Rep. Jim Cooper, who first went to Congress in 1983 when the national debt was just $1.6 trillion have added literal trillions more in debts. The Congressional Budget Office says that the recent health care reform bill, which Rep. Cooper voted for, will add more than $1 trillion to the national debt over the next 10 years.

There are many other examples of massive overspending that are equally problematic and equally damaging to the American way of life. Business-as-usual politicians, addicted to being re-elected, have made millions of Americans dependent on federal programs for which we no longer have the money to support. There is no painless way out of this crisis but perhaps there is good to come from it down the road.

Perhaps by slashing funding for many of the federal programs we can encourage our citizens to look more to their state and local governments to address community needs. Perhaps our churches and community organizations will become more engaged with local needs. Perhaps our citizens will get out of their homes and engage their neighbors through service and participation in their local communities. Perhaps people will learn to be more self-reliant and more involved in helping their families, friends and neighbors.

This is not a dream-world. This is a very possible reality. We are going to have to make a choice very soon; either we chose a reality based on responsibility, entrepreneurship and capitalism, or we can go the way of European socialism. We have a clear picture in Greece, Russia, and other countries, of where that road leads.

Each of us has more than 42,000 reasons to vote for a real change. If you are ready to help us fight to turn America away from the coming fiscal catastrophe and head in the right direction, please join our campaign at http://www.hartlineforcongress.com.

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2 Responses to “This math isn’t fuzzy, part II”

  1. Pete Porzitski Says:

    Sir:
    I see no particularly interesting or innovative solutions listed here, rather a repetition of platitudes and blame-casting. As what I might legitimately interpret as a relatively blank canvas, you may be informed of a specific strategy that would buffer our communities from the ever-encroaching tide of larger and less responsive government and business interests. Yes, thoughtless as government actions can seem, my perspective includes a view of unresponsive and mixed-up multi-national businesses that exist only to perpetuate and enlarge themselves at the expense of local concerns.
    The answer is of course to focus on local production and distribution of goods and services beyond current arrangements. If we as a people are able to turn our backs on the companies that perhaps once were American but who now transcend national borders or interests, we might have a greater say in our present as well as our future, and help bring our nation’s attention to the welfare of the people rather than (apparently) anything but.
    I hope you find some useful point in this note.

  2. Jeff Hartline Says:

    Pete: Thanks for the reply. What I hear in your note is someone waiting for somebody else to do something. The private market is a mixture of people who see an opportunity, who are willing to work hard and take risks, and resent others who somehow think that they may lay claim to the friuts of someone else’s labor.

    If you feel that there are interests that seek to enlarge themselves at others’ expense, then actively start a local business and lay claim to the vibrant market that is out there. But to sit back and complain about other people who get up early, work hard, and stay up late is not the solution.

    If that is local, then so be it. But for citizens to complain about business they do not like is not the answer either.

    Certainly, it is not an answer to allow government at any level to pick winners and losers. I trust the market. I do not trust government.

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