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Saturday, July 30, 2011

I'm back and we're all broke!

I finally have something to say. Like a lot of the news and the news reporters, I am going to comment on the national debt, debt ceiling, and related.

First - if you think the current problem is a Republican problem - you are WRONG!
Second - if you think this is a Democrat problem - you are also WRONG!

One thing I can say about today's politicians, for the most part they are all clueless. The only thing that appears to be motivating most of them is getting re-elected. There is enough blame to go WAY beyond party lines.

One aspect of the debt ceiling/national debt discussion that bothers me is that most average Americans seem only to be concerned about the problem in relation to any monies they get from the government being cut off. This is the problem people! Remember the base rule - THERE IS NO GOVERNMENT MONEY!! It still angers me beyond words when I hear a reporter, politician, or anyone else talking about "federal funds", or "state money". (but that is another subject - it is only relevant because people see their gravy train being shut down) There is going to have to be a LOT of government programs cut off or at least scaled WAY back!

The federal government is spending WAY over $1,500,000.000.000 (1.5 TRILLION) a YEAR more than it has! It does not take a financial genius to realize that is not sustainable!

How about some history relating to the national debt?

Pre-WWII (1939) the debt was around $40 billion dollars. During the FDR/Great Depression years, when HUGE federal spending got really started; the FDR administration took the federal debt from under $17 billion to over $33 billion in 1936. War build up and America assisting our allies in early WWII battles sent the debt to the $40 billion level.

At the end of WWII, in 1946 the debt had skyrocketed to almost $270 billion. FYI, the GDP for that year was around $1.7 trillion. So, the debt was under 16% of GDP - remember that - even after fighting a world war and funding the battle for a large portion of the world!

From 1950 to 1960, even with the funding of the rebuilding of Europe and Japan, the Korean War, the GI bill, the beginning of the Vietnam War, and getting NASA and our space program going; the national debt was in the $255 billion to $290 billion range. Still under the $300 billion level. FYI (for you real numbers freaks like myself) the GDP grew from over $1.9 trillion to over $2.8 trillion. So, under 14% growth for the debt with an over 45% growth in the economy. The national debt actually dropped as a percentage of GDP.

In the 60s with the Vietnam war, Johnson's addition of a LOT of social programs under his Great Society, and sending people to the moon, the national debt grew to around $370 billion. The GDP grew to well over $4 trillion! So, national debt stayed close to the same in percentages - even with all the spending.

The 70s brought the end of the Vietnam war, the beginning of OPEC and our first modern oil crisis. The debt climbed to over $900 billion. We were approaching our first TRILLION dollar debt. The GDP grew to $5.9 trillion. This shows what soaring oil prices and runaway social programs can do. Our national debt outpaced the growth of GDP by a wide margin.

The 80s brought the first Great Recession of my lifetime. It took us until 1983 to achieve sustained growth in GDP over the 1980 numbers.Unemployment was in the range it is now, to a bit higher. The advent of hair bands pulled us out ; ) (seeing if you  are paying attention) We ended the 80s close to our first 3 trillion dollar debt ($2.85 trillion 1989). The 80s saw our first trillion dollar debt (1982), and our first 2 trillion dollar debt (1986).  The GDP went to right at $8 trillion. Again, a decade where national debt outgrew GDP by a wide margin. The effect of oil prices, runaway social programs, and profligate spending were obvious.

Ah, the 90s! Desert warfare, global terrorism, Islamic jihadists, and so much more. The debt grew to over $5.5 trillion. The GDP grew to over $11 trillion. The first decade our debt was more than 50% of GDP.

Now for the REAL scary part. The 2000s. You can see from the previous (or your own research) no matter who was in the White House, the debt has risen ever since we instituted the social welfare programs of FDR. Republicans and Democrats alike cannot stop spending money they do not have!

Watch this:
In 2000 the national debt was $5.6 trillion.
In 2002 it was $6.2 trillion.
2004 - $7.3 trillion.
2006 - $8.5 trillion
Now we ramp it up a bit -
$9 trillion 2007
$10 trillion 2008
almost $12 (11.91) trillion in 2009
2010 - $12.6 trillion
today - $14.5 trillion.

AND GROWING AT OVER $1.5 TRILLION A YEAR!!

To finish the comparisons, the GDP grew from around $11 trillion in 2000 to around $13.2 now. So, with a 20% growth in GDP we have grown the debt by almost 250%  AND GROWING!!

If any of you are left, here is the payoff. WE HAVE TO GET CONTROL OVER SPENDING. Taxes are irrelevant to the problem. We MUST stop spending what we do not have. You can raise taxes all you want. If you are spending the entire GDP every year it JUST WON'T WORK!! Period. You cannot tax more than is made!

Now, this means a LOT of cuts. Cuts to EVERYTHING! Social programs, defense, foreign aid, research, EVERYTHING. It has to be. The value of EVERY goods and services (ALL the money) produced is already in the debt. There AIN'T NO MORE! The federal government has about $3 trillion dollars of revenue coming in this year. We did not spend $3 trillion dollars a year in any year until 2008. (FYI - we are projected to spend over $4 trillion in 2014 if nothing changes!) We need to CUT SPENDING! PERIOD! Should tax increases or elimination of loopholes be part of the discussion - OK, maybe. I am not a fan of taxes. I do not see where penalizing any group of people is good. However, maybe we eliminate some loopholes that allow certain people to pay little or no taxes. But, WE CANNOT TAX OUR WAY OUT OF THIS! One of the things that bothers me the most is the way no one is talking about what we are spending now - well over $3 TRILLION!! THAT IS ENOUGH MONEY!!

Call or write your senator and congressman. Tell them it is time to STOP SPENDING OUR MONEY LIKE IT IS ENDLESS!! Tell the to pass a budget that lives within OUR means - NOW. Stop playing games.