Since when does someone have to compromise to solve a problem? Why do our elected officials insist that we can solve problems only through compromise? What does compromise have to do with doing what’s best for the country and the current and future generations that are being saddled with the massive debts we’re incurring because we can’t stop spending money?
Well, I guess that’s three questions, but they’re questions that need to be asked.
Sometimes we have to compromise. I get it. Especially in Washington where our elected Representatives are more concerned about their political futures than they are about our country’s economic future. Sometimes that is the only that anything will get done, but it’s usually not the best thing because we water down important provisions to make everyone happy. At some point, however, we have to stop compromising if we ever want to solve our fiscal problems.
Newsflash: Our problem IS a spending problem, not a revenue problem. Don’t believe me? Look at the chart in this post about the debt ceiling. In the last three years, revenues have declined (which tends to happen in a recession), but spending has gone almost vertical. Can you honestly say that life is all sunshine and lollipops because of it? I doubt it.
If we really want to fix something, we have to accept that compromise is bullshit. Compromise is the fastest way to ensure that your solution will not be effective, or at least not as effective as it could be. The left is using the media to paint the right as unwilling to compromise, and thus, not willing to find a solution. I summarily reject the premise of that argument. The reason why we haven’t fixed this problem is because we HAVE been compromising. We, as citizens, and our representatives need to say “STOP”.
Besides, back in 2006 wasn’t it then-Senator Obama that called President Bush’s request to raise the debt ceiling a “failure of leadership”? Didn’t Senator Harry Reid and almost every other prominent Democrat echo that same characterization? Wasn’t it Vice President Biden that in 1984, criticized President Reagan for the same thing? Fast forward to today and those same politicians, in the face of potential economic collapse, are unwilling to cut the same spending that is taking us there. Why not? Simple. Government spending buys votes. They use social programs to bribe the citizens they represent so they can stay in power. But I digress…
Did the Lincoln Republicans finally put an end to slavery by compromising with the Southern States? No. They kicked their ass. Did the Allies win WWII by compromising with the Germans and Japanese? Nope again. They kicked their ass. Do we really think that we’re going to stop the bleeding by allowing the Democrats and the President to borrow more money to pay for more out of control spending? You guessed it. It’s not going to stop until we kick their ass.
Let’s say that you have a teenage daughter. You give her a credit card so she has a little spending money. At first, when you look at your credit card statement, you see a couple of ice cream cones and movie tickets. Okay, no big deal. Over time, however, you see the charges increasing in number and extravagance until your statement is full of charges to Gucci and Jimmy Choo. At this point, don’t you say that enough is enough and take away the damn credit card? Why is that so unreasonable when we’re talking about our nation’s finances, which are funded by taxpayers?
Does the debt ceiling ultimately have to be raised? Probably. We have enough revenues to pay our debt payments and necessary services, including the entitlement programs, but our spending is so out of control that even with the right changes, it will take a number of years to start “living within our means”. As such, the only way to survive without being able to borrow money will be to implement austerity measures similar to what’s taken place in Europe. We can do without the riots.
There’s one other way to survive without an increase and that’s to start printing money again the way the Federal Reserve has been for the last two years with their “quantitative easing” programs. Isn’t our dollar weak enough already? QE1 and QE2 are the reasons why the dollar has lost so much value and why the prices of food and oil have skyrocketed (no, it’s not the “evil speculators”, it’s the dollar). If you want to see how that path will turn out, just do a little reading about the fall of the Roman Empire or the Weimar Republic.
Recent polls (for what they’re worth) have shown that over 60% of Americans want spending cuts, over 70% want a Balanced Budget Amendment and less than 35% would accept a tax increase of any kind (even on the evil rich folks). Do we need to draw a picture for our Representatives to understand what they need to do? The GOP gets it for the most part. The Democrats do not, and it’s amateur night at the White House. This, unfortunately, makes it difficult for a solution to be had when control of Congress is split, but if the GOP stands on principle and does a better job of getting their message out, they will win in the end. If the GOP wins, America wins.
The Democrats have done nothing for years but spend more money and then try to blame the Republicans for it. They don’t have a plan except to point the finger at the other guys. Have you seen any kind of plan from the Democrats? I haven’t. They haven’t passed a budget in over two years even though they controlled both houses of Congress and the White House. The only plan that has been put forward by them in this Congress is President Obama’s pathetic excuse for a budget, in which “living within our means” is defined as doubling our national debt and trillion dollar deficits.
This will not end until we put our foot down, cut spending, fix the tax code and implement a Balanced Budget Amendment to make it a Constitutional requirement that we live within our means. Congress spends like a drunken sailor and has proven that they cannot control themselves when entrusted with taxpayer dollars. They seem to forget that somebody has to work for that money. For Congress to spend money on something, they have to take it from someone else first. They are not good stewards of your money and they never will be unless we make them. 49 out of 50 States have Balanced Budget requirements in their Constitution. Why don’t we as a nation?
Let’s not forget though, that a Constitutional Amendment does NOT have to originate in Congress. Article V of the Constitution reads as follows (with emphasis added):
The Congress, whenever two thirds of both Houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose Amendments to this Constitution, or, on the Application of the Legislatures of two thirds of the several States, shall call a Convention for proposing Amendments, which, in either Case, shall be valid to all Intents and Purposes, as part of this Constitution, when ratified by the Legislatures of three fourths of the several States, or by Conventions in three fourths thereof, as the one or the other Mode of Ratification may be proposed by the Congress…
That’s right! The States can propose Amendments to the Constitution as well. So, definitely write your Congressman and Senators, but make sure you write your State Representatives as well. If Congress won’t do it, that doesn’t mean that the States won’t.
It’s time to draw a line in the sand. It’s time to stand on principle and remind Washington that they work for us, and can only do what we tell them they can do. It’s not their money. It’s ours, and if we don’t stand up to be counted, it won’t be too long before our country becomes Greece.
Compromise is for losers.