It Is Time to Fold up Congress’ Spending Circus

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We all know it is difficult to teach an old dog new tricks, but apparently it is even more difficult to teach an old politician new ideas. They are still rearranging furniture in their office in preparation for this session, and the new batch of beltway babblers are acting more like Bozo the Clown than fiscal hawks. But government should not be conducted like a circus.

Raising the so-called debt ceiling will let the government continue to spend like clowns while they distract the people with their dazzling spending ability. The reality is that the spectacle has become somewhat nauseating for some and conservatives are saying that the show is over.

New Speaker of the House, John Boehner has indicated he is ready to lead the charge to immediately cut spending in an effort to avoid hitting the latest arbitrary debt ceiling. Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner says that Congress has to vote to raise the debt ceiling or incur financial disaster when creditors to the US will no longer be willing to loan us money.

The Facts

Politicians have raised the debt ceiling 74 times since March of 1962. They have raised it 10 times in the last 10 years. The debt ceiling stands at almost $15 Trillion, and increases around $19 million every hour.

The Problem

If you are a creditor to the US Government, you assumed some level of risk. It is no secret that the US Government is paying off the debt with Chinese money, not American. So the argument that we somehow lose leverage with our creditors is nonsensical. If you were a creditor, would you rather extend your AAA ratings to someone who got a new credit card from another company every time he hit his credit limits, or someone who refused the temptation, made tough choices, and took responsibility?

Democrats talk of ominous implications resulting from cutting spending. Conservatives know that if the lights have to be turned off in some bureaucrat’s office, or some pork is denied, life will go on.

The Reality

Speaker Boehner has acknowledged that America need not default on her debt in order to live within her means Refusal to raise the debt ceiling is not tantamount to fiscal ruination, it is merely an immediate and firm resolve to cut spending, as this Congress promised to do. Senator DeMint says this is “The Showdown” we have been waiting for.

Politicians love to draw false parallels (if we don’t raise the debt ceiling, then our economy will collapse) in order to elicit fear in people to act as they would have them act. But this is a show. Not raising the debt ceiling simply means our government won’t borrow any more money. It doesn’t mean we won’t honor our obligations for what we’ve already borrowed. The American people are wise to this tactic now and won’t be partaking in the kool aid any longer, thank you.

The Politics

America elected Conservatives to fix the problem of spiraling debt and spending insanity. America no longer believes the threats of the left when they promise tragic results if conservatives don’t act in accordance with the spending they need to buy off the pet constituencies that they know they need to maintain their power base. Democrats know if serious cuts in spending take place, they will lose their base. That might be the only real “tragedy” here.

Those asking us to consent to raising the debt ceiling are asking us to trust them—again. This smacks of giving a heroin addict a syringe as they promise not to actually use it. They are asking us to trust the untrustable. This is our childrens’ debt. Americans are done with that and ready to fix the problem, not prolong it.

The Call

The American voters who just flipped Congress are ready to flip who ever else continues in this spending circus. Almost everyone agrees that if we can’t borrow the money government will have to cut spending. We are asking our government to:

1) Pass a Balanced Budget Amendment

2) Cut spending

3) Leave the debt ceiling at $14 Trillion

And this should highlight our conviction and spell it out for you if no one else has: Conservatives are asking if it is possible to lower the debt ceiling.

This debt ceiling is fake—it is really no ceiling at all. Raising it is more like raising the big top of a circus tent. Now if we can just fold up the tent, get the clowns out of there, then we restore our vision of the ‘Shining City on the Hill’ with economic stability and fiscal solvency. This is one show we just cannot let go on.