Imagine if the Berlin Wall were to be reconstructed with stacks of $100 dollar bills. If we were to use the US national debt, we could build this wall twice.
Pundits have been using odd metaphors to describe our country’s dire financial position ever since we starting attempting to grasp the intangible numbers associated with the debt and deficits. Most people haven’t even seen $1000, much less $1 million.
The Berlin Wall metaphor offers more than just a visual representation of a monstrosity of money 67 miles long, 12 feet tall, and eight inches thick; it symbolizes the amassing barrier standing between us and the future of American exceptionalism.
As Barack Obama adds to this $13 trillion wall, our freedoms will continue to erode and the “road to serfdom” will start resembling a superhighway.
Over the last ten years, our government has entrapped us in a state similar to East Germany. We are not a Soviet satellite by any means, but the taxes resulting from our debt could be equally restricting.
Even if we choose not to pay for the principle on the debt in the short term, the interest on the debt alone has the chance to cripple our economy. We are approaching a pivotal time in history where we will have to use similar methods to reverse one of the longest standing trends in our nation: increased government spending.
Unless we roll the current interest into the old debt, you and I — the old and the young — will be forced to pay for this interest. This sort of a tax hike would paralyze this country’s small businesses and investors, ultimately leading to much higher unemployment.
The American people have consistently voted in politicians who stay popular by providing extensive government services to their constituents. Earmarks are the most commonly used example, but Social Security, Medicare, and Obamacare were all enacted for that common purpose.
At times like this, our situation can seem irreversible, but we must remember that we are Americans. Ever since 1776, the odds have been consistently stacked against us, and yet we’ve prevailed because our people have had the courage to battle for the values we believe in.
Ronald Reagan helped stop the world trend of communism by demonstrating the advantages of freedom and liberty. We are approaching a pivotal time in history where we will have to use similar methods to reverse one of the longest standing trends in our nation: increased government spending.
For too long, we have allowed our politicians to buy votes by ignoring the intent of the founders and creating a slew of federal programs. Ben Franklin wisely forecasted, “When the people find they can vote themselves money, that will herald the end of the republic.” We’re guilty as charged.
The American people have consistency voted in politicians who stay popular by providing extensive government services to their constituents. Earmarks are the most commonly used example, but Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and Obamacare were all enacted for that common purpose.
Governments are supposed to serve their constituents, but setting the country on a course for bankruptcy is not exactly service.
Washington politicians, especially those currently in power, have felt noble about spending other people’s money for years, and — worst of all — Americans have endorsed this behavior by granting them reelection. This must stop this November.
At this point, balancing our budget and paying off our debt while meeting our contractual obligations will be about as easy as putting a camel through the eye of a needle. The good news is that we can stop adding to our symbolic wall by rising up and demanding action from our politicians. The bad news is that we cannot precipitously bulldoze entitlements.
Tons of people have been promised services from the government and planned their lives around receiving benefits like Social Security. Our entitlement programs will have to be reformed gently enough to not hurt our seniors but quickly enough so that we don’t tank our economy with national bankruptcy.
The key will be to begin disassembling our wall brick by brick by endorsing plans like Rep. Paul Ryan‘s “Roadmap for America.” This map, instead of leading to economic serfdom, leads to keeping America as that “shining city upon a hill.”