Economics 011: For Those Needing a Prerequisite

$16,700,000,000,000 Debt Is No Childish Squabble

“There are two ways to conquer and enslave a country. One is by the sword. The other is by debt.” ~John Adams

Economics is not my field. It may have been the discipline of the man Obama claims is his father—Obama Sr had an AM in economics from Harvard—but that does not mean that Obama Jr knows anything about economics. Obama’s field is Socialism.

According to the US Constitution, Congress, not the President, controls the purse strings. Obama knows this. Before he became President, he was a Constitutional lawyer.

The national deficit is the amount the country is in the hole for a given year. In 2009 the country fell short over $1 trillion. In 2010, over $1 trillion. In 2011, over $1 trillion. In 2012, over $1 trillion. In 2013, over $1 trillion. Those deficits pile up or accumulate.

The national debt is accumulated deficits or shortfalls. Right now, the country has accumulated debt of $16.7 trillion. Continuing to accumulate debt is not good.

“The principle of spending money to be paid by posterity, under the name of funding, is but swindling futurity on a large scale.” ~Thomas Jefferson

The government’s fiscal year begins in October.

By the end of September 2012, the country was suffering its fourth consecutive year of $1 trillion deficit, which meant the national debt was escalating.

October 2012 Congress gave Obama a debt ceiling of $16 trillion. By mid-November 2012 the newspapers were talking fiscal cliff. After the debt reached the then-$16 trillion debt ceiling 31 December 2012, the US Treasury, using special accounting maneuvers, began shuffling funds to pay the bills. By January 2013 Obama was out of money. He had maxed out on his annual credit in three short months.

Wednesday, 23 January 2013, Congress voted to extend the government’s borrowing power, but only until 19 May.  This led to a national debt ceiling of $16.4 trillion ($16,400,000,000,000).

After 19 May 2013 Obama wanted another extension: more credit. This brought the new debt ceiling to $16.7 trillion, which was maxed out by July. Afterward Obama began printing paper money—with no gold to back it up. That money is not part of the $16.7 trillion debt—it is unaccounted for.

All summer accountants were juggling the books, playing with figures, making things look good on paper; but even they knew there would be a reckoning day.

During the budget battle in September 2013 Congress offered to make cuts. For starters, defund ObamaCare. Obama said that was not going to happen. As a matter of fact, Obama was unwilling to cut much of anything. He needed enough money not only to keep on doing what he’s been doing but to cover some of the shuffling of funds at the Treasury.

What could Congress do? Dealing with Obama was like dealing with a wayward son who was squandering his daddy’s money. He thought it was free. He thought he was entitled. And when he didn’t get his own way, he began acting out.

To assert his authority, Obama closed the National Parks. That may be fine out West, in the big wilderness areas, with great swaths of land. But in DC the parks are nothing more than monuments and sidewalks, open areas where people can walk. There was no need to barricade these sites—on an ordinary day they were open and unmanned. The Obama Administration closed them anyway.

Angry vets broke through barricades around the World War II Memorial. These vets had waited so long to get that memorial, and now the government was keeping it from them.

There is no simple resolution for the budget impasse. Government cannot restart as it did in the Reagan and Clinton years because the national debt is out of control. Congress cannot authorize more and more spending. There has to be fiscal responsibility and accountability.

Despite everything, the US has the biggest economy in the world—well, naturally, with a $16.7 trillion debt. If it defaulted on its loans, it would mean losses for pretty much every bank on the planet. “Of course the worst probably won’t happen. Congress will probably swerve the car a few seconds before it plummets over the cliff” (Robert Peston).

No one knows what’s gonna happen. But $16.7 trillion is no childish squabble.

“We don’t have a trillion-dollar debt because we haven’t taxed enough; we have a trillion-dollar debt because we spend too much.” ~Ronald Reagan

“To preserve our independence, we must not let our rulers load us with perpetual debt. We must make our election between economy and liberty, or profusion and servitude.” ~Thomas Jefferson

Copyright © 2013 Alexandra Lee

Photo Credit


About Christseekerk

Minister, Editor, Writer, Senior Citizen, Grown Children, Grandchildren. Interests travel, writing, reading, walking, golf.
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