The debt ticking time bomb

Ron Hart Ron Hart is a libertarian humorist and author who can be reached at Ron@RonaldHart.com.
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“Politicians will always spend every penny of tax raised and whatever else they can get away with.”

–Milton Friedman

The bipartisan debt commission headed by Democrat Erskine Bowles and Republican Alan Simpson was tasked with recommending ways to reduce the national debt. These seasoned Washington insiders came up with some reasonable recommendations which will be treated like most smart decisions in Washington: they will be totally ignored.

Both sides will, no doubt, talk about cutting spending in their speeches, but rest assured the commission is all for show. As we know, all politicians do is act like they care about an issue and ask for money. Then they consider the problem solved.

Obama has one solution for our financial problems: raise taxes. What Washington is saying is give the government more money via tax increases and it will spend less. That is like Kirstie Alley saying if you give her more food, she will eat less.

The notion that we can spend our way out of debt is like thinking you can eat your way out of obesity. Cutting spending is never done without some pain, but we can either have a little pain now or a lot of pain later.

Historically, each new dollar in taxes results in between $1.17 and $1.81 in new spending. We have to starve the monster that is Washington, not feed it. The more we feed it, the more it will want later.

Aside from the debt it racks up, the more money the federal government takes from us, the more we cede our power and our freedoms to politicians. Entitlement teaches dependency.

Politicians squander money. There was even an excuse by the Obama administration and its auditors that the dispensing of stimulus funds was held up because there were not enough federal workers to administer the spending. In short, there are not enough government bureaucrats to spend money we do not have to “create” jobs that have not materialized. And now we are out of stimulus money. So you tell me: should we give these Bozos more money?

It is clear that neither Obama nor many in his administration understand business and how it has been responsible for the standard of living improvements enjoyed by Americans over the last two hundred years. He has twice slandered Las Vegas by telling people not to go “blow their cash” there. In reality, at least in Las Vegas you have a chance of getting some return on your cash. By contrast, Washington is a financial black hole.

Taxes take money from the most productive part of society (the person or business who made the money in the first place) and redistributes it, after government’s nefarious hands take their cut, to the least productive part of society. The moochers take money from the producers, distributed by politicians who grease the hands of their cronies in the process. Money in private hands is always better for the economy.

Greece almost went under from massive government spending and unsustainable entitlements. Most of Europe is cutting spending to get their act together. Our president was treated like a pariah on his overseas trip to the G20 Summit for demanding that everyone else spend money in order to stimulate the economy. There has not been a worse trip overseas since the Griswalds’ trip with Chevy Chase in the 1980’s. We now have President Obama-adopolis, who is better suited to have been running Greece into the ground, rather than implementing a sane economic policy.

I am reminded of a story that best summarizes what needs to be done here. Two farmers are going broke and one says to the other, “I am going to have to get rid of my blue tick hound dog.” The other farmer asks why, and the first farmer says he cannot afford to feed the dog. The second farmer says, “Why don’t you do what I did? I started feeding my dog poke salad. It grows abundantly in the field, it’s nutritious, and it’s free.” The first farmer says, “I don’t think my dog will like eating poke salad.” The second farmer says, “You know, my dog didn’t like it much either for the first few days.”

Ron Hart is a syndicated op-ed humorist, author and TV/radio commentator. Email Ron@RonaldHart.com or at visit RonaldHart.com