Tuesday, September 01, 2009

So, what are you willing to give up?

You’ve no doubt heard that the government “revised” the estimated deficit from $7 trillion up to $9 trillion for 2010-2019. The current health care package being debated and argued ad nauseum will add another trillion to the total.

Why do I have a funny feeling the number will grow?

The cause for all this is a no-brainer. The government is spending way more than it takes in. To be clear, this all started well before most of us even heard of Barack Obama. In Washington, D.C. fiscal responsibility is an oxymoron.

So, how do we solve all this? There are only two choices, or perhaps a combination of both: cut spending and/or raise taxes.

What happens when you overdraw your checking account? You get a nasty note and penalty from your bank.

What happens when the government does the same thing? Well, think what it would be like for the Chinese to foreclose on the White House. Wouldn’t that be a proud moment? China holds over a trillion dollars of our debt, and I do believe they expect to get paid back—and not in Monopoly money.

But when you have a government accounting system that deals in “rounding errors” in the billions, it’s a recipe for financial disaster.

Oh yes, the market seems to be humming along. It’s no wonder. The companies making money have two things in common. They didn’t take bailout money and they’ve cut expenses to the bone, most notably employees—a difficult decision for any company to make.

Don’t let Washington fool you; our national unemployment rate is well north of 10 percent.

We are stuck in a national “catch-22.” A line-item veto would certainly be a good start, but the folks who could vote on that are the same ones who love to tuck millions for pork into legislation for the folks back home not remotely connected to it.

The Balanced Budget Amendment? Never gonna happen. Look at the health care “reform” debate. It would amount to a pimple on a hog’s rear end compared to the debate over balancing the budget.

So, we have to ask ourselves how much more in taxes we are willing to pay. Are we willing not to have our streets plowed, or those potholes on the Interstate fixed?

If the government isn’t willing to fly coach like we do, then it’s hard to expect us to give up driving on a decent road when we go to the airport.

I’d suggest you call or write your elected representatives, but they’re not listening. They stopped listening a long time ago.

Hence the $10 trillion deficit.

Just think, a child born today will do so automatically being $5,000 in debt.

A child born tomorrow will be in even more debt.

And so it goes.


John W. Scherer

John Scherer is CEO & Founder of Video Professor, Inc.

You can reach him at ceo@videoprofessor.com.