Thursday, April 28, 2011

Debt and Security

With the national debt growing with no sign of slowing, will it become a top security threat to this country?

The U.S. is increasingly borrowing more and more money every day to cover its expenses and obligations to the American people. A large portion of that money is being borrowed from other countries whom we do not have the best ties with. China is our largest creditor to date and they are also our largest trading partner.

When your retailer starts lending you money to buy their products, the retailer becomes the dominant one of the two. China holds nearly a trillion dollars of our debt.

Is our debt becoming the single biggest national security threat to our country? Well if you take into consideration of all the money we owe several countries and our own citizens, then the answer is a solid yes. Debt can be a good thing as it can keep a counrty running when in an emergency. But when you dig deeper in debt year after year just to pay the light bill, then red flags should start to wave.

The debt affects everyone. When the debt bubble bursts then all of us will feel the pain. And this pain will last a long time. Being the most powerful nation in the world, there would be no one to bail us out. Our collapse would cause a domino effect to the majority of the world's economies.

Just remember, we can change our course. All it takes is a vote.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

No more "Pursuit" in the Pursuit of Happiness

Debt is a powerful thing. It can help create the greatest nations in the world, and it can also be the cause of their destruction.

The American way of life went from "the pursuit of happiness" to "I'm not happy unless I have it now." The "pursuit" has been replaced by debt, which is fed by greed. The government begs us to consume anything and everything. It tells us that we can have an endless supply of debt as long as we spend and consume.

When we try to cut back and save our earnings rather than spend them, we are told that it is unpatriotic, and that we are the reason jobs are so low and the economy is still lagging.

When we have a federal deficit of over a trillion dollars, we should be prioritizing what the needs are before the wants. A deficit that large and we are informed that over 50% of taxpayers don't have to pay taxes. Big business is blamed for not doing their part and paying a larger share.

I find it comical that during tax-time, most folks that you talk to can't wait to file because they are going to get a big refund. Yes, because like mentioned before, over 50% dont have to pay taxes. When I wa young I was always under the impression that everyone was scared of tax season in fear of owing. Now, somehow, people are getting upwards of 7, 8, 10 thousand dollars. It's like Chrismas comes twice a year now.

Our government always seems to say they have an answer, but they are not very quick on acting on anything. Will they ever get their eye on the ball. Why does it always have to be about either special interests, re-elections, businesses, or unions? Why can't it just simply be for the country? Or for everyone? Why doesn't the government instill the the act of "pursuit" back into us rather than consume?

The United States is at the edge of the plank, about to fall in an ocean of debt, and there's no life jacket floating nearby. Wake up America.

Monday, April 25, 2011

A penny for your Thoughts

With the national debt in the tens of trillions of dollars, and next to nothing costing under a buck anymore, is there really a need for the penny? Remember the days of saving your pennies to get that candy bar or soda. Anymore, if you see a penny on the ground, the most that you do with it is kick it around for entertainment.

With Pennies costing more to create than they are worth, why keep them around. According to Coin Update News, the material to produce them has cost more than the face value since 2006, and it is now 2011. In January, 2011, the average cost per penny was $0.0179. That is nearly double. And you wonder why the nation is in so much debt. Pennies are costing us money. Don't you just wish that it was the other way around where once you were handed a penny, the value would double? Well keep wishing.

With the widespread and trending use of plastic, the use of coins is diminishing rapidly. It also doesn't help that the amount of goods available for some pocket change is getting even smaller. Getting rid of the penny would save money, and would get rid of the denomination altogether. It would bring everything to increments of 5, which could do a lot of good, and make things less complicated.

How many people tell the cashier at the register to keep the pennies. Or even better, how many cashier have told you not to worry about the extra three or four cents that your trying to find in your pocket or purse. It's seems like it is just a nuisance and not worth the time.

Just think about for a moment, what it would be like without one cent. Would it really be such a culture shock if we did without? Would it even be noticed, or missed? What would the economic consequences be? there are several questions that would arise with discontinuing the penny.

A penny for your thoughts, anyone?

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Why the Fuss Over the Debt Ceiling Increase?

The decision is nearing its deadline of whether or not the debt ceiling should be raised. The republicans say no to raising the debt limit unless there are certain conditions met. These conditions are to cut more spending. The democrats on the other hand are accusing the right of holding the economy hostage by trying to attach strings to the vote.

Either way, the bottom line is that the debt limit is going to have to be increased regardless. Both parties know this and they know that the final days to act are here. In less than a month the U.S. government will reach their limit and if nothing is passed to increase this limit, then the government will have to default on its debt payments, causing damage to the economy that could be irreversable.

Those in office know what they are doing. The right is going to try their hardest to cut the debt, claiming not to vote for an increase, yet they know just as well as everyone else does that in the end they will have to vote for it regardless. The left is trying to mark republicans as holding the country hostage. The blame game continues.

All the while you are having to sit at home and watch as all this goes down. I am quite surprised that the left hasn't used the excuse of the vote "being needed" for "humanitarian reasons" as they do on every other issue. This is just like the healthcare, where if you do nothing then the world is going to end and it is so urgent that you the entire system has to be redone and socialized NOW, in order to survive.

The debt limit has to be increased. There is no other way around it when you have a left president and senate. Spending will rule the debate until atleast, and hopefully, the next election. Maybe then we can get the government under control and have the spending issue resolved. Until then, vote for the increase, and focus more on getting jobs, and work on decreasing regulation for demestic energy. In other words, focus on the economy in ways that don't increase spending. Limit the millions of overlapping regulation and let businesses breathe. Then you will see the full power of capitalism.

Friday, April 22, 2011

The National Debt Clock

Ever wonder how much money the government owes? What about how much of that amount is your responsibility? It's a scary thing to see when you realize that sooner or later, you will have to start making your share of the payments.

Most people don't think anything of our debt, and there are some out there that assume they are not responsible because they didn't spend it. Well if you are one of those then you better sit down for this, because YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE!

If you want to know where to go to see exactly how much debt we are in,  where the debt came from, who owes what, what the state debts are, how much is borrowed from social security, how much interest we are paying for the debt, and more, well then here are a few websites you should look at.

 1. This is very detailed, live, and categorized

2. This is less detailed and a more basic clock.

Thursday, April 21, 2011


Express your feelings toward our government, starting at the local or state level. Various organizations all over the country are holding rallies every week to spread the word about the wasteful spending, bad politics, state budgets, and of course, the national debt and its counterpart, the annual deficit.

Step up to the plate and head to your nearest rally. After all, it is you who can make a difference.
Band together with others that share the same beliefs and show the government that you do notice and that you do care.

Upcoming Local Area Event

Capital Rally
April 28, 2011
10:00 a.m. until 2:00 pm
Topeka, Kansas @  the State Capital

For more details check out: Topeka Capital Rally Event

Attend this if you want to hear about the budget, healthcare overhaul, government charity, and what we can do about it NOW!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

A Sense of Entitlement

Will the United States end up like Greece? My guess is yes, and probably worse off than them or any other country that is currently going through financial turmoil. If you ask yourself, "how did we get here," the answer is quite clear. What costs us the most amount of money? That would most likely be entitlements and war. But war is inevitable, in most cases. (unless your us and want to invade everything that moves)
Entitlements are good in their purpose, and can even be good for the overall economy. It sure doesn't hurt the standard of living either. In fact, the entitlements we have are mainly for increasing and sustaining a minimal standard of living. Social Security is a paycheck for when you can't work or are retired. Medicare and Medicaid are just what they are, medical coverage. And then there are the smaller ones, like the food stamps and the low income benefits.
The problems with these entitlements are not that they are bad programs. It's that we are too used to them. We become sort of greedy and want more. And a bad thing about them is that once they are in place, they will never go away because that would be political suicide. No one will vote it out. And when they are put in place, no one thinks about how they will be paid for during an economic downfall.
Someone needs to take a poll to see if the entitlements we currently have are good or bad, between all people who are currently using the benefits, and all the people that just pay for the benefits. I think that we would be surprised at the results. I believe that, by a two-thirds margin, the people using the benefits would be the ones complaing the most. It just seems that whatever the benefit may be (food stamps, welfare, SSI, Social Security, etc.), most people aren't satisfied with basic necessities and coverage. They want more. I see it everyday. I hear it everyday. People complain constantly that the benefits they get are not good enough. So naturally, why would someone who doesn't use the benefits want to pay for them. All they hear is constant complaing. What's worse is if you get caught saying that we should get rid of entitlements, then you are labeled as the devil, when half of the ones using them hate them.
I will assume that by the time I retire, Social Security will be nearly wiped out, if not already. By then we won't be able to borrow to keep it going. Who will help me then. Maybe at that point our mentalities might change somewhat, and they will be telling me "you should have prepared." But as long as this sense of entitlement is around, people are going to think that they need more for less because they deserve it. They are Americans.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Land of the Free Things

Growing up in the rural part of Kansas, I learned through my parents the values of working for the things you own. I learned that nothing in life is free and there is no “living above your means.” If you wanted something you couldn’t afford, you either saved for it, or you worked your butt off to get it.
As I got older I became more intertwined with the urban and inner-city lifestyle. I saw a difference in the way people thought. The small town people I was used to believe just what my family did; nothing is free in life, and you worked hard for what you have. Many,  but NOT ALL, of the big city folks “in my opinion,” assume that simply because they are an American Citizen that they deserve healthcare, retirement, financial security, bailouts, welfare checks, etc. courtesy of the U.S. government.
Yet those same people think that living above their means is normal and that monthly payments to the bank can get them whatever they want, as long as they can make the payment each month. Notice I said “want” in that sentence. People are more than happy to pay nearly double for a big screen television or the new shiny car that they “want” by making payments, but when it is something they NEED, like health insurance, or retirement savings, they do not “want” to pay for something like that, and assume that it should be given to them because they work for a living in America.
This is the “Land of the Free,” not the “Land of the Free Things.” That means we are free to make choices. So if we choose to buy a new car instead of healthcare, and we get sick, whose fault is it as to why we went bankrupt? Well people seem to believe that it’s America’s fault and not their own. That’s where they are wrong. When it came to the car or the health insurance, most of us chose the car. Why doesn’t the government say “STOP, that’s a nice car, now show me your health insurance card,” or “Oh, you don’t have health insurance? Well you better downsize and get rid of the big fancy house and car so you can get some.”
 All our lives we are encouraged to spend. What’s worse is it’s our own government telling us to do it. Why not to save? Why doesn’t the Government make it mandatory for Social Security to hand their earnings over to private companies so that the money can be managed properly?  This way retirement is privatized and the government doesn’t have the liability anymore. But the government refuses to do anything. “It would take away from the economy,” they say. Well what does S.S. do? Social Security is a giant Ponzi scheme and everyone knows it. Instead of keeping the money in there for the future baby boomer shortfall, the government borrows the surplus funds. Funds that it has no plan of action of paying back. How is this even constitutional?
Why don't state governments make banks require consumers to have health coverage before they can get a loan? Think about it. A consumer is a liability to a bank without health coverage because if they get sick they can be overwhelmed with debt overnight leading to a default. If the bank gave insurance holders the normal or slightly cheaper rates and gave the non-insurance-holders higher rates, the difference in interest could nearly pay for the healthcare premiums in most cases, and encourage people to buy health coverage to get the lower rates. Especially on mortgage loans where 1% can equal hundreds of dollars. This would also help to eliminate risky loans. But the government has too many friends working at the banks and they will probably think that this is a bad idea. They would claim it violates equal opportunity rights. How? You can’t get a car loan from a bank without auto insurance. It’s the same thing. They do not need to know your health problems either; just proof that you have coverage.  
The government needs to persuade Americans to do things the right way, not force them and take on huge liabilities. If people want coverage for all, then coverage needs to come first before new cars and homes that are twice the size you need. Why should I, who works to live within my means, have to pay for Joe’s health coverage when he is driving a brand new car that he got because of a “Cash for Clunkers” deal courtesy of the government, yet he doesn’t have insurance? I would like to know how many people bought a new car with the “Cash for Clunkers” program that didn’t have health insurance.
This is why conservatives are angry. More money keeps disappearing out of our paychecks so that it can go to people who can’t manage money and who rely on the government for assistance. I think that if Congress paid more attention to what the uninsured used their money on instead of healthcare, they may have been able to work hand in hand to get a “health for all” plan without costing the taxpayers a single dime. It seems like this whole debate on healthcare has been about nothing but politicians being able to put their name next to the words “health coverage” in our children’s school history books. And they will do whatever it takes. They need to look at the big picture and see that we are Americans, we are mentors to the world, and we need to be able to take care of our own future.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Why the Debt Matters

Hmm... The National Debt. Does it matter? Of course it does people. Right now the the average debt per citizen is $45,973. The average debt per tax paxer jumps clear to $128,639. Let's be honest here. When we have to pay back this monstrous 14 trillion dollars, the ones that are going to be paying it are the taxpayers. So the latter of the two numbers is the amount that will be paid by people who pay taxes and do the right thing for a living.
Congress is in the works for an increase in the limit of debt that we as a country can take on. The current limit is estimated to be met by May 16. The only way to avoid this would be to raise taxes or cut nearly 800 billion from the annual budget. Wha... Either way someone is going to pay, whether that be from paying taxes or from not getting a service that you once took for granted.
Today, S&P announced that if nothing is done soon to fix and sustain the federal deficit, there could be consequences that could become devastating to the U.S. economy. If the debt rating lowers even the slightest bit, it will cause irreversible damage to everyone's standard of living, and the American way of life.
Many people seem to be more interested in when the next "Cars for Clunkers" is going to take place, or when they can get the next handout from the taxpayers. We see no harm in what the debt can do. Today's society looks at the next few hours, not the next few years. We want everything now and that is why we are okay with the idea of debt. It has become socially acceptable to build a life around borrowing, and what better than to seemingly borrow for free. When we can borrow and not worry about when we have to pay it back, or just push the payments further down the line, we detach ourselves from all consequences that go with it. And it does not help that the government is always saying that we are just fine. It's nothing, really!
Come on people, when has the government ever known what they were doing with money? They can't figure out where most of the money they have is going. They just assume that since they have the right to print money, they might as well take advantage.
Let's step up to the plate and say no to more debt. Let's balance the books not only for ourselves, but for our children. Let's start today!