Appalling debt milestone

Appalling debt milestone

March 17th, 2011 in Opinion Free Press

Our federal government set a disturbing record last month: It ran the largest single-month budget deficit the United States has experienced in its 235-year history!

For February alone, the deficit hit almost $223 billion.

That's how much Washington spent beyond what it took in through taxes, which are already higher than they should be.

The total national debt is now more than $14 trillion - and rising! We are paying hundreds of billions of dollars in interest on that debt.

With more huge deficits month after month, is it any surprise that our country faces a total deficit of more than $1.5 trillion this year?

Unrealistically, some politicians are trying to blame our terrible debt on tax relief enacted in recent years. But it is absurd to argue that the American people are taxed "too little" when annual federal tax revenues total more than $2 trillion. Rather, our nation is obviously spending too much.

Opponents of tax relief also ignore the fact that the failed federal "stimulus" and the massive taxpayer-funded bailouts of the financial sector and the auto industry have played a part in increasing our debt.

What should we do?

More taxes plainly aren't the answer. So Republicans in Congress have proposed tens of billions of dollars in budget cuts to begin - just to begin! - getting our national finances in order.

But congressional Democrats are blocking responsible, serious spending reductions, insisting that even more wasteful - and often unconstitutional - spending is needed.

They claim that many of the spending cuts proposed by Republicans "would unfairly hurt education, college aid and support for low-income groups," the Associated Press reported. But won't higher spending and increasing debt cause greater damage? Congressional spenders and President Barack Obama surely should realize that if we do not cut discretionary spending and begin to reform our crippling entitlements, there eventually will be no money for essential and constitutional responsibilities.

Our country cannot continue pretending we can spend money we don't have on programs we can't afford and don't need - without disastrous consequences we assuredly don't want.