THREE POWERFUL WORDS: "WE THE PEOPLE"
September 27, 2010
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton recently stated "I think that our rising debt level poses a national security threat and it poses a national security threat in two ways: it undermines our capacity to act in our own interests and it does constrain us where constraint may be undesirable. And it also sends a message of weakness, internationally."
I suspect that Thomas Jefferson would have agreed with Secretary Clinton. It was Thomas Jefferson who stated: "We must not let our rulers load us with perpetual debt." So far in fiscal 2010, the Federal government spent over $1.169 trillion more than it made. The national debt now stands nearly at 14 trillion dollars. The Federal deficit has seemingly whirled desperately out of control.
Our children and grandchildren are being crushed with future indebtedness in which their future is already burdened with burgeoning national debt. How could we let this happen? Where is the power of "we the people"?
The first three words of the United States Construction are "We the People". Our Country was the first in the history of the world to reverse the course of government with these three cutting edge words. It is "we the people" who determines the course of government. Almost all of the constitutions of other countries are documents in which the governments tell the people what are their rights. Our Constitution is a document in which "We the people" tell the government what it, as a government, is allowed to do.
There seems to be a relationship between increasing indebtedness and government growth . Many believe that limited government, at all levels, is best. This was the clear intent of America’s founding forefathers. The question is how small is small? Is 10 percent of the economy which goes to the government enough? How about 20, 30 or 40 percent? In other words, what share of our economy’s national income should be controlled and dominated by federal, state, and local government? Many will answer that between "10 and 20 percent of the economy for spending, with near zero debt" is about right. Today however, I am told government consumes about 44 percent of the economy by its spending, plus another 13 percent for its unfunded regulatory mandates. Thus, less than half of the economy is left for the free market private sector. Think of it, 4.5 trillion dollars are controlled by federal, state, and local governments, which now is costing nearly 15 thousand dollars per man, woman, and child. For a family of four, the costs are now just a little less than $60,000 annually and increasing with pending new legislation and expansive government.
The American voter overwhelmingly values a debt free economy, growth in jobs, limiting public spending and lowering taxes. Point in fact, an increase in taxation drives more and more capital out of the market place and strangulates production and growth. In fact, raising taxes on the people who create jobs, kills jobs! There are those in government who wish to confiscate even more monies from hardworking middle class Americans, from small business entrepreneurs and from productive industries and, by so doing, imperil the jobs of millions of American workers. And that is what weakens the entire fabric of our American society. It was Alan Greenspan who said, "Tax increases become self-defeating by absorbing purchasing power and reducing work and investment incentives." In fact, raising taxes during a recession is suicidal.
We challenge every political candidate for public office to start putting balanced budgets ahead of their own agenda, to put the financial health of the nation above political ambitions, and to recognize that government cannot continue compounding deficit after deficit. Immediate attention must be given to creating job growth and job security and economic stability. But now, more than ever, both parties and candidates for public office must address the serious risks of unsustainable deficits and develop plans to reduce the size and reach of the federal, state, and local government agencies. The day must come when every political official is aware of and acts on reducing the debilitating effects of deficits on future generations. Our elected officials would do well to heed the words of Hillary Clinton "I think that our rising debt level poses a national security threat."
As I see it, freedom works over-bureaucracy strangulates. Adam Smith said it well, "It is the highest impertinence and presumption, therefore, in kings and ministers, to pretend to watch over the economy of private people, and to restrain their expense... They are themselves always, and without any exception, the greatest spendthrifts in the society. Let them look well after their own expense, and they may safely trust private people with theirs. If their own extravagance does not ruin the state, that of their subjects never will." And Ronald Reagan had it right, "You can't be for big government, big taxes, and big bureaucracy and still be for the little guy." And after all "We the people" are the powerful little guys all across this great land of ours. And that is how we see it FROM THIS PERSPECTIVE.