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Obama's Spending Fantasies: Taking Us Over the Cliff?

  


Deficits and debt have become iconic words of late connoting the general dysfunction of a government and political leadership that have given up all pretense of fiscal plausibility, with deficit spending verily mushrooming into uncharted waters as we speak.  It is frequently accompanied by another catch phrase, devastating in its implications, that being "unsustainable," as uttered regularly, say, by the non-partisan, Democrat controlled Congressional Budget Office or CBO, when referring to current spending levels, and, particularly, in regards to projections on Obama budget proposals for 2010-2019.  

What that means, in simple English, is that the nation cannot afford its government, and that anticipated yearly deficits and total debt load will be hazardous to the country's fiscal health.

And yet little about this is heard from Congressional lords and barons who allegedly "control" the government's purse strings, and certainly not from the denizens in the White House who seem intent on transforming their country from a nation founded on individual liberty (and - its prerequisite - personal responsibility) into something else, say, a European style welfare state with Obama as first Prime Minister.

Deficits though had been of supreme importance to Democrats when Bush was in the White House.  Then, the caterwauling was endless over the "fiscal irresponsibility" of the Republican President, which, by the way, I would not disagree with.  They decried his "tax cuts for the wealthy" and the costs of the War in Iraq, a war, mind you, that 27 Democrat Senators voted to authorize including Senators Kerry, Edwards, and Clinton, who could not wait to show their toughness so soon after 9/11.  

But after January 20, deficits no longer seemed to matter.  Obama's "stimulus package," for example, eagerly embraced by Democrats (and three Republican Senators), the largest spending bill in our nation's history, has easily eclipsed the Iraq War with change left over. And there have been other spending geysers too including the $410 billion "Omnibus" bill with its 9000 ear marks and 8% increase in discretionary spending, far outstripping the rate of inflation, the $33 billion increase in children's health insurance, and a $3.5 trillion 2010 budget proposal.  This final item, as bloated as it is, does not include Democrat plans for a new $1 trillion middle class health care entitlement.

What a difference a change in administration makes!  Now former Democrat deficit hawks are all atwitter over yet further prospects for fiscal hemorrhaging, deficits be damned.

And, so, more than any foreign threat we may face from such as Iran or North Korea, we find that it is the gluttony of our elected leaders that will undermine the nation.  For the fatal flaw of democracy occurs when legislators realize they may indemnify their political careers by taking from one group and giving it to others: also referred to as buying votes.

What evolves, in effect, is extreme wealth redistribution, which becomes a powerful tool for commandeering the elective process, until, of course, its ill effects become better known.  But even then, perhaps not, given the corrosive influence on individual will that accompanies government dependency, not to mention an idolatrous and partisan media that has long downgraded its primary duty from that of overseeing government to that of actively promoting a liberal agenda.

The dynamic leads irrevocably to a shrinking productive element in society, a gradual decline of the private sector.  The habit of taking more and more from fewer and fewer for the benefit of many that have now fallen into soporific entitlement causes the apparatus to become top heavy and unwieldy, eventually tumbling and, perhaps, shattering, as the stubborn numbers refuse to add up, and the profligate nation falls into permanent decline.  And with that decline, the loss of the economic machinery that had heretofore provided so well for so many through the Republic's two hundred plus years.

It is frightening, but not inconceivable, to wonder about the financial solvency of the nation; what with horrendous deficits looming as far as the eye can see, the inevitable collapse of entitlements as the baby boomers retire, the grand and vulgar promises given out to so many by cynical politicians that cannot possibly be met.  

The outcome unless proper measures are taken will unavoidably be confiscatory tax rates, reduction in government benefits, economic stagnation, and, who knows, perhaps real calamity: bankruptcy, government failure, a breakdown in law and order, social upheaval.

But the numbers do not lie.  Federal outlays this year will surpass $4 trillion or 28.5 % of GDP, a level not seen since World War II.  The deficit approaches $2 trillion or 13.5% of GDP. The CBO projects that the Obama budget for 2010 will add an additional $9 trillion over the next ten years, more than doubling the nation's debt. The current unfunded liability for entitlement programs stands at $56 trillion!  By 2050, Medicare and Medicaid will consume the entire federal budget with nothing left for defense, Social Security, infrastructure, anything.

The narrow self-interest of the political class is astounding.  The compulsion in both parties to expand government beyond its means is the real crisis confronting the nation.  If not addressed, we shall bequeath painfully limited horizons to our children.



Comments

  • Ken Larmore

    June 30, 2009

    Dr. Moss,

    You are absolutely correct. Your assertions that that the United States is in great jeopardy, on so many levels, given the socialist/facist agenda of the Barry Hussein Obama administration. In a short 120 days, or so, Obama has taken monumental measures to destroy all of the principals and freedoms upon which that this great nation was founded. The "annointed one's" agenda will ruin life as we know it and has already compromised the values with which so many, and I, were raised.

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