"The debt, the debt. Please don't bore me with debt talk! It simply does not matter! Our kids (or grandkids) will take care of it!"
These days it is rare with everything else going on, to hear about our debt. And due to the magic of accounting, it recently even grew higher just by an action of the Federal Reserve. By raising the interest rate just a smidge, the cost to service our debt also went up. Oh, by the way - as much as we like the fact the GFY 2016 bill put the device tax and the Cadillac tax on a two year recess, it will add billions to our debt. In other words, the GFY 2016 bill addressed curtailing revenue for ObamaCare, but not the costs.
Here comes the real shocker. I have finally figured out what the largest factor is in growing out debt. Not the Federal Reserve. Not the President. Not even the Democrats. Ready? It is cooperation. Reaching across the aisle (so to speak). Getting along. This is what happens when principles are left at the door in exchange for a handshake. Republicans acting like Democrats. Acting like RINOs. Wanting to be like Santa. Wanting to help. Helping by growing government.
Here is the irony. Many Republicans are hard over on holding the line on taxes. And that is a good thing. But that is after the fact. These good folks have allowed government to keep on growing. And where do those dollars go if not offset by higher taxes? Bingo - the debt.
This may surprise some of my conservative friends. I don't care about raising the debt ceiling. It does not mean anything. The money has already been spent. Raising the debt ceiling just allows us to pay for what we have charged. I AM HOWEVER, quite concerned about spending. How every year we spend more than we take in. How nobody in government seems to give a tinker's dam about this unsustainable growth.
So, how do we keep growing the debt without really trying? Simple answer - just keep on keepin on. Don't change anything. However to change the game, to change the outcome, to change the future for our kids and grandkids, we need to have lower spending every year. Not the same as the previous year, but lower. Figure out to get more bang for the buck from our government. Wring out some of the 20% waste, fraud and abuse.
If we can't all join hands and agree to that path, let's just forget about the future and enjoy the party. This could be New Year's Eve all over again. Only this time the hangover is going to be a whopper.
ps. In today's paper, Jim Abeler was endorsed by the editorial board for the SD35 open senate seat. One of Abeler's strengths according to the paper - reaching across the aisle. Get the message?