The phrase ‘debt ceiling’ has probably been used more often on the airwaves and in print over the past two weeks than it has been in the past two decades. The public seems to be more in tune with the political wrangling over this issue than it has ever been in the past, which is making it pretty difficult for our elected officials to simply pass something for the sake of doing business-as-usual.
As observers to the strange dance that is going on in
, it surely seems that everyone there has lost their senses and that nothing will ever be accomplished. In order to fully appreciate what is going on however, there are a few things we must keep in mind. Washington
Few of us can remember a time that Congress has debated and argued as much as they have in the past couple of years. Understandably, people get exasperated by watching this process and the news media continues to seek ‘compromise’. Don’t fall into that trap. What you are actually seeing is a rarity, elected officials making a stand on principle and keeping their campaign promises.
As is usually the case, the news media tends to report that Republicans are unwilling to compromise with the President to reach a deal and threatening default rather than reporting that the President is holding out for tax increases and threatening default if he doesn’t get his way. Fortunately, an increasingly aware public sector is less likely to fall for such rhetoric. This increased awareness is making a real difference in
, giving newly elected members enough support to allow them to make principled stands that we are not used to seeing. Washington
A case in point would be the recent vote in the House on Cut, Cap and Balance. While the bill did pass, there were some Republicans who voted against the measure. Rep. Morgan Griffith was one of those who opposed the measure. In response to my questions regarding the issue, Rep. Griffith responded: “It’s clear that
has a serious spending problem. I support a Balanced Budget Amendment, but if we want to make Washington better for our children and grandchildren, that must be coupled with significant spending cuts now. The reason I voted against Cut, Cap, and Balance was because, in my judgment, the year one cuts did not go far enough.” America
While I certainly agree with Rep. Griffith that the currently proposed cuts do not go far enough, I will have to agree with President Obama that we need to bring in additional tax revenues. Where the President and I part company however, is in the right way to generate those additional revenues. The best plan the President can come up with seems to be higher tax rates, despite his assertion less than two years ago that “You don’t raise taxes in a recession”. I prefer Sen. Marco Rubio’s position that the best way to raise tax revenue is to increase the number of tax payers.
We currently have a vast untapped source of tax revenue in this country, and the President is doing his dead level best to make sure those revenues remain out of reach. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 25.3 million people are either out of work or underemployed. By moving the majority of these people from the ranks of the unemployed to the workforce, we will create new taxpayers and allow them to contribute to the economic recovery. The problem with this solution will be to find a way to create this shift in employment status.
As was recently reported at Business Insider Steve Wynne, CEO of Wynne Resorts spoke out in a conference call about the reasons for the weak economy:
“And I'm saying it bluntly, that this administration is the greatest wet blanket to business, and progress and job creation in my lifetime. And I can prove it and I could spend the next 3 hours giving you examples of all of us in this market place that are frightened to death about all the new regulations, our healthcare costs escalate, regulations coming from left and right. A President that seems, that keeps using that word redistribution. Well, my customers and the companies that provide the vitality for the hospitality and restaurant industry, in the
, they are frightened of this administration. And it makes you slow down and not invest your money.” United States of America
The answer is pretty simple. We know that the government does not create jobs that will help the economy, but it is intuitively obvious that government policies can have a profound effect on the private sector’s ability to create jobs. It is also abundantly clear that the policies of the Obama administration are having a major negative effect on job creation. How hard is it to understand that we need to change those policies in a way that will reduce the burden from the job creating machine that our nation depends on?