With the U.S. government fast approaching its current $8.965 trillion credit limit, the Senate on Thursday gave final congressional approval of an $850 billion increase in U.S. borrowing authority.
The Senate voted 53-42 to raise the debt ceiling to $9.815 trillion, the fifth increase in the U.S. credit limit since President George W. Bush took office in January 2001. The U.S. House of Representatives approved the higher debt limit earlier this year as part of the overall budget resolution and the legislation now goes to Bush for his signature.
Check Google News for "debt ceiling" and see how many hits you get.
Credit limit ... that's like on your credit card. Only the government just ups the limit when it maxes itself out. Don't you wish you could do that?
The problem with credit in general is that it represents money you have to pay back. Given our population of 301 million people (July est.), a debt of $9.815 trillion means every man, woman and child in this country owes ... well, you do the math.
Even on if its an interest only loan (like those wonderful teasers the mortgage industry has been feeding us for the last ten years), the interest payment alone has us all eating hot dogs and beans from now until hell freezes over. And we're not even paying down the principal! (We could have used the Clinton surplus to do that, folks.)
And what do you suppose happens when the value of the dollar drops like a rock ... as it has been through the Coulter Republican regime? (We're 1 to 1 with Canada, fer Christ sake. I'm in my friggin' 60s and I can hardly remember the last time that was true.)
That dollar in your pocket? It's only worth $0.80 in the real world.
The Coulter Republicans (they like to think of themselves as Reagan Republicans) like to frame the debate in terms of "tax and spend liberal Democrats". My disgust comes form the degree to which the the Democrats allow that to happen. The debate could just as easily be framed in terms of "pay as you go" and it would actually be a more accurate description.
So, the Republicans sell a program of tax cuts (which, incidentally, don't really effect the vast majority of tax payers ... just the upper couple percent of tax payers ... the ones who can afford to pay the taxes) and they "leverage" the economy. They say the balance will be invested in the economy and that will result in healthier profits in the private sector and therefore, greater tax revenues. If that's true, how come it never shows up in the numbers? "Leveraging" sounds just peachy keen ... until you realize that "leverage" is just another way of saying "take a loan". Now the loans are coming due. You can only ride on other people's money for so long. You simply can't get rich by taking on debt! Try it sometime with your credit card. You may look rich for a while, but eventually, the debt comes due.
Thank you, Ronnie. Thank you for the legacy of debt up to our eyebrows. The trickle down just doesn't seem to be trickling down. Those wonderful companies have taken the windfalls and invested them in other countries, exported American jobs ... and now the loan taken in the name of the American people is coming due.
And then they have the balls to call themselves"fiscally responsible"!