In a little publicized news item late last tear, President Obama let it be known that he soon wants to raise the nation’s debt limit another $1.2 TRILLION. This comes on the heels of raising the debt limit $1 TRILLION back in August, only about five months ago. Unfortunately, since then, neither Obama or anyone in Congress has come up with a plan to rein in out of control government spending, preferring to blame each other for the failure and the impending financial disaster and destruction that will occur shortly unless we get our debt under control.
To illustrate how inept both the executive and Congressional branches of our government are, even the formulation of a Congressional Super Committee, whose only job was to come up with some reasonable expense cuts for the Federal budget, walked away with nothing after four months of trying.
This failure is all the more telling when just in this blog, we have identified TRILLIONS of dollars worth of necessary and sane spending cuts that would have minimal impact on the average America. However, these cuts would have substantial impact on defense contractors and lobbyists, the size of the all-all-to large Federal workforce, and the criminal elements that defraud the Federal governments’ programs (e.g. Social Security, Medicare, etc.) of hundreds of billions of dollars a year.
Many different American organizations have already done the legwork and analysis on how to efficiently and compassionately cut spending, including Obama’s own deficit reduction commission They have all identified more cuts than twelve members of Congress could do with their extensive staffs over a four month period, a sad commentary on our political processes, members, and situation.
And President Obama does not get off scot free in this calamity either. He has chosen to stay in the background of this whole crisis, lest it cost him some votes for his precious reelection, hardly a leadership position. He ignored his own deficit reduction commission’s findings and recommendations. The long term, ten year budget he proposed back in the spring was so ridiculously expensive that the Senate UNANIMOUSLY rejected it.
But let’s get back to his request for another $1.2 TRILLION worth of debt ceiling relief and try to make sense of it at the household level. If his administration has already burned through the $1 TRILLION relief that was granted to his administration just five months ago, I think is safe to assume that he will conservatively require at least another $1 TRILLION worth of relief, in addition to the $1.2 TRILLION, by the end of 2012, a total 2012 debt relief ceiling number of $2.2 TRILLION.
If his $1 TRILLION from last August only got him five months or so of breathing room, the $1.2 TRILLION is not going to get him through the rest of 2012. It is also a good bet that given his traditional lack of leadership, he will not propose any budget reduction initiatives in 2012, no matter how necessary, in order to not risk losing any votes prior to the November elections.
Some simple math shows that if he does need another $2.2 TRILLION worth of debt ceiling relief in 2012 added on to our national debt and there are about 113 million households in the U.S. today, then this $2.2 TRILLION would burden every American household with an additional $1,600 worth of debt expense every month in order to pay for his $2.2 TRILLION debt increase.
How does this additional debt load compare to what U.S. households pay every month today in order to just operate their own lives? The Bureau of Labor Statistics tracks household spending on an annual basis in their Consumer Expenditure Survey. According to their 2010 report, the average American household earned about $62,000 a year and had average monthly expenditures of the following:
- Monthly housing expense = $1417
- Monthly transportation expense = $633
- Monthly food expense = $500
- Monthly health care expense = $258
- Monthly entertainment expense = $217
- Monthly clothing expense = $142
Thus, the theoretical $1,600 monthly expense that Obama’s 2012 requests for debt relief will impose on every U.S. household is larger than what the average American family pays for ANY other typical expense. It is equivalent to about what an average household spends on food, transportation, health care, and entertainment COMBINED. This onerous household burden does not include the TRILLIONS of debt the Obama administration has already run up in the first three years of this administration.
As you can see, the above list does not include what an average American family pays every year on income taxes, sales taxes, property taxes, social program taxes (e.g. Social Security), excise taxes, gas taxes, etc. Putting all of this information together, it becomes obvious that we are quickly losing our freedom since you cannot be living in a free society where the biggest expense and burden in your life is the burden of keeping an ever growing, wasteful government functioning.
You cannot have political freedom if you do not have economic freedom. By continuing to increase the debt load of the country, a load that has to be paid by every American via increased taxes, we each have less freedom to send our kids to the schools we want, less freedom to contribute to our favorite charities, less freedom to own the home we want, less freedom to enjoy life.
To Obama, it is just another TRILLION or two. To us, it is a loss of freedom today and for many future generations who will have to pay for the folly of Obama’s TRILLIONS.