I’ve been writing about the debt crisis and the budget talks and taxes and various stimulus plans for a bit now and through it all I can’t help but think that the answer is simple basic accounting.
Basic accounting says that if you only earn X amount of money, that is all you can spend.
I don’t know about you, but that’s how it works at my house. We make this much money and what’s left after all of the deductions, is what we have to live on. Sure there are programs and things that we would really like to have and do, but if it costs more than we can afford, we do without.
Most businesses are also run that way. They take in X amount of money. That money has to pay for the facilities, personnel, benefits, supplies, equipment and other operating expenses. If anything is left, it is called profit. If all of the expenses add up to more than what the business makes, then they have to find ways to cut expenses or go out of business.
Our government should be held to the same standards. They take in X amount of money. The year’s budget then should be based upon that amount. Bottom line is if you don’t have it, you can’t spend it.
Our Founding Fathers expected the federal government to remain relatively small, allowing the states to govern themselves for the most part. Unfortunately that is not the case. It has been allowed to grow completely out of control.
Our federal government reminds me of The Little Shop of Horrors plant Audrey 2. The plant demands the blood of the owner on which it thrives and grows. Audrey 2 continually demands ‘feed me’ at which Seymour would do whatever he could to supply Audrey 2 with enough blood. Eventually, Audrey 2 consumes Seymour and his friends, demanding more and more blood.
The federal government is Audrey 2, demanding our blood, yelling ‘feed me’ over and over and growing out of control. And like Audrey 2 if we continue to feed it, it will consume and destroy us. We have no choice but to start chopping away at all of the excess vegetation until Audrey 2 (the government) is pruned back to a manageable size that can be maintained with the blood (taxes and other revenue) available.