The national debt is going to drag our nation down into second-rate national status. It is a huge drain on our economy. The massive interest payment alone each year is the second-largest item in our annual budget.
Plus China, Japan, and others — by buying our debt — acquire power over us. Not a smart move.
And of course we are cheapening the value of the dollar.
The rise of the tea party movement, mainly to combat this debt situation, is a sign that American grass-roots organizations are not going to let politicians keep ruining our country.
And now that the GOP/tea party/conservatives have won the 2010 elections, an amazing phenomenon is about to occur: We, as a nation, are entering a multiyear national debate about how to reduce the national debt and finally get our federal fiscal house in order.
Last week’s preliminary chairmen’s report on the deficit reduction commission, co-chaired by Erskine Bowles and former Sen. Alan Simpson, is the first move of many to come to address the systemic problems (entitlements and Pentagon spending) we have.
What this is going to take is national leadership. If President Obama takes hold of this issue he can rescue his otherwise-failing presidency and maybe even get himself re-elected. But if he fumbles it, as he seems to fumble just about everything, then the GOP will capture this issue for the 2012 presidential election, in which the fiscal issues will trump the social issues.
Make no mistake: this is the pre-eminent issue of our time. We are on the verge of bankruptcy, and we must reverse course now. To do so is going to incur the wrath of many of our fellow citizens.
Can we do it? Yes. But it is going to be very difficult and will require tremendous political courage and skill.
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