“Figures don’t lie, but liars figure.” 

It is likely you have heard the admonition that is the title of this opinion piece, but you won’t be bored or confused here with a mountain of statistics.

Truth is, the United States is broke, dead broke. Every dime the Federal Government spends is borrowed. The result is a spiraling out of control debt that will soon be $20 Trillion Dollars!

“It’s the economy stupid!” Remember that from a presidential campaign several elections ago? It is as true now as ever. Regardless what you see or hear on the news, the economy is NOT robust. Sure, some segments are beginning to show improvement, but hasn’t the damage to the average American already been done?

Here are some things to consider:

  • A huge segment of those who were laid off in the recent economic downturn are now occupying jobs that pay less and are far below their skill level. How else could they keep body and soul together?
  • Fast food chains have been the beneficiary, able to hire high quality workers because that person cannot get a position for which they were trained. High skills, low pay.
  • The pressure of an increased illegal immigrant onslaught at the border further exacerbates the demand for jobs. Illegals can garner the simple jobs at lower pay.
  • The Congress and sitting President have not been unable to come to grips with the bloating Federal Bureaucracy for the past 50 or so years. Government spending is totally out of control.
  • There was a great deal of talk in the Washington Beltway this past month or so about cutting Social Security benefits, in order to shore up spiraling government spending. Sure, penalize the old to pacify the incompetent!
  • Government must take its hand out of the affairs in every state. What, for example, would be the result if the Department of Education was dissolved in favor of a simplified system of block grants based upon enrollment? The initial impact would be a colossal reduction of control over our schools by those in Washington. Or, how about dumping the entire tax code in favor of a “fair” or “flat” tax? To be sure, laid off federal employees would shoulder a big part of chopping block action.

Our elected officials in Washington, DC, have become a growing “political class”, seemingly working more to pad their own power base and greed than for the good of the People. Have you ever wondered why every member of the House of Representatives and Senator is essentially set for life once they have served a term or two?

Government cannot dictate wages! Why? It’s simple, really: The more a business has to pay for workers, the fewer workers it can afford, or, it must set higher prices for its goods and services, perhaps both. Simple economics. Too, it is a no win situation. The business must find a fair balance for its costs versus income. A business is NOT a charitable institution.

The bloated Federal Government, is populated by employees protected by Civil Service rules and a union that cares not for anything other that control! Those rules and union contracts are part and parcel why the VA’s hospital efficiencies are failing, with more than 300,000 veterans having passed away waiting to see a physician!

It will be difficult to solve even a minute portion of the debt problem. Hard decisions must be made. A reduction in the Federal workforce must be made. A cut in those departments with duplicated effort is mandated. In short, simple kitchen table economics like you and I practise in our home budgeting, has become a necessity.

But, what do I know? — D. C. ‘Dan’ Lee

Crying Baby 3